Day-by-day journal jottings are usually of interest only to their author, but Page's notes to herself aren't private: they were written for the listening audience of National Public Radio. Casual, brief and commonsensical, her comments best serve the needs of the beginning gardener hungry for facts and plainspoken reassurance, hints for initial success or information on unexpected quirks of nature (e.g., a pie plate filled with water will lure bees to a garden). In particular, Page, a former editor of National Gardening magazine, coaxes novices to take the plunge into vegetable gardening, advising on how to grow prizewinning pumpkins and maintain "woodchuck control" (nasturtiums planted around the garden, or a good dousing of "the family urine" at its edges, are recommended methods). Though well-known flowers (irises, daylilies) are discussed, they are not Page's consuming interest, nor are yuppie fantasies of backyard paradises. On slugs, Page remarks, "Yuk"; endearingly, she admits making mistakes, and consults other experts when in doubt. Hers is an easy book to pick up, put downand pick up again.