Best Coffee Table Garden Books…

I love a good garden book.  Especially one that’s filled with all kinds of lavish English garden photos, particularly if they’re from the Cotswolds ~ one of the most quaint, garden-filled & old-fashioned corners of Britain.  But here, as we search for the “Best Coffee Table Garden Books,” we won’t just narrow our search to England: we’ll cover gardens all over the world…in America, Mallorca, Spain, Italy, & all over Europe, to give you a book to reach for when you’re looking for a little bit of beauty…or simply some new garden design ideas.  And what could be better than to have it close to your favorite perch?

Best Coffee Table Garden Books, Girl Who Gardens

From the formal splendor of Highgrove’s gardens to the rustic chic of Patina Farm in Ojai, California ~ these garden books will provide endless hours of inspiration…

The Prettiest Coffee Table Garden Books…

  • Adventures in Eden: An Intimate Tour of the Private Gardens of Europe: This is the beautiful garden book that sits on my coffee table ~ I love the sea of tulips surrounded by manicured hedges.  It’s a WOW kind-of-cover.  And unlike many garden books, which focus solely on British gardens: this book roams from Scotland to Germany, to the sunny isle of Mallorca, giving you garden inspiration across all of Europe’s varied climates.
  • Highgrove: An English Country Garden: Next up are the private gardens of Prince Charles, also known as the Prince of Wales.  Some say he loved his gardens more than he loved Princess Diana….& whether that’s true or not, he has long been a pioneer of organic gardening ~ & this book takes you thru 30 years of his process behind creating one of the most famous gardens in Britain. 
  • The Layered Garden: Design Lessons for Year-Round Beauty from Brandywine Cottage: Just the name “Brandywine Cottage” serves up such delicious connotations.  This is the perfect book for anyone who seeks to create a garden that looks beautiful in every season: the concept of “layering” means placing plants next to each other that bloom at different times of year…to create a non-stop, year-round kaleidoscope of color.
    Best Coffee Table Gardening Books, Girl Who Gardens

    Prince Charles’ gardens at Highgrove grow some of the tallest foxgloves I’ve ever seen!

Best of British Garden Books…

  • Sissinghurst: Vita Sackville-West & The Creation of a Garden: If you love historic British estates & want to see the evolution of a single garden over many years ~ this is your book.  Part history lesson, part practical advice: this book takes you inside one of England’s most visited gardens.
  • The English Country House Garden: If one garden isn’t enough for you ~ take a glimpse inside twenty-five of England’s most gorgeous grounds.  Some are grand & imposing, while others are more quaint & cottage-like.  It takes you inside Hidcote Gardens in the Cotswolds, Rousham House, & the fairy wonderland that is Exbury, to name a few.  Great if you’re looking for a wide overview of English gardens.  
  • Secret Gardeners: British Creatives Reveal Their Private Sanctuaries: I love the title of this one.  And if you’re curious to see what Sting’s gardens look like, or Rupert Everett’s (Julia Roberts’ best friend in “My Best Friend’s Wedding“), then you’ll want to nab this book.  Combined with essays that explain the inspiration behind these private gardens, this is a coffee table book you’ll reach for time & again…

Best Coffee Table Garden Books, Girl Who Gardens

A photo of Sissinghurst’s gardens in June. Photo by Country Life.

Best of American & Lifestyle Garden Books…

  • Patina Living: Now, we’re headed to some American gardens…& the first book takes us to Brooke & Steve Gianetti’s gorgeous gardens in Ojai, California.  There’s a rustic, almost French-country feel here ~ & don’t be surprised to find some of their goats or sheep wandering into the photos.  If you enjoy their style, you’ll also enjoy their other books: Patina Farm & Patina Homes.  
  • French Country Cottage Inspired Gatherings: If you’re wanting to gather inspiration for creating beautiful outdoor settings this summer ~ think: bohemian tables set up underneath oak trees, with delicate string lights overhead…then pick up this book.  I’m partial to romantic French country style, so every image in this book makes me want to re-create it.  A great book for aspiring hostesses & backyard entertainers…
  • The Gardens of Bunny Mellon: Bunny Mellon is one of America’s most famous home & garden designers, representing the ethos of the East Coast ~ having designed gardens at her homes in New York, Cape Cod, Virginia, & even at the White House!  This book contains over 300 photographs, & grants us access to her private journals, sketches, & correspondence: a true insider’s look at one of America’s most famous, untrained designers.

Best Coffee Table Gardening Books, Girl Who Gardens

One of the best things about “Patina Living” is its inclusion of beautiful sketches such as these, which give you a behind-the-scenes feel of their planning process. Photo by Patina Living.

Best Coffee Table Garden Books…

Gardening is one of my new passions….click here for more articles on gardening & garden inspiration!  And if you’re curious about creating your own English cottage garden, read this article

xoxo Noelia

Read Next: How to Create a French Country Garden

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Best Coffee Table Garden Books, Girl Who Gardens