UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA
University of California
UC Master Gardeners, Santa Clara County, CA

UC ANR Publications

Garden Help

A wealth of invaluable reference materials are available from University of California's Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) Publications.

  • Both print and electronic versions are available for most.
  • Many smaller publications are free or low-cost.
  • Use the promotion code PRCLA43 at check out for a 10% discount and to support our local program.

Below are some of Master Gardeners' favorite, Golden Trowel award-winning reference books.

General gardening

The 2nd Edition of the California Master Gardener Handbook Second Edition is here, with updated tables, graphics, and color photos throughout. The California Master Gardener Handbook has been the definitive guide to best practices and advice for gardeners throughout the West and is an invaluable reference tool for all California gardeners. Also available in a variety of e-book formats.

Drip Irrigation in the Home Landscape
Make every drop count! Drip irrigation can increase plant performance and water savings, and its easy automation can make irrigation simpler while reducing weed and pest problems. This easy-to-use reference guide on Drip Irrigation in the Home Landscape answers common questions about components, materials, design, installation, maintenance, and troubleshooting. Note: this publication is no longer available from the  ANR Catalog but much of the content is viable via Google Books.

Sustainable Landscaping is a gardening approach focused on matching the plantings and design to a plot's native complement of soil and water resources and local climatic conditions. In the long run, a sustainable landscape costs less and takes less time to maintain. Free publication for downloading.


Trees and shrubs

Use Healthy Roses, a best-selling guide for the rose enthusiast, to get sound advice on how to control pests and diseases using alternatives such as beneficial insects, traps and barriers, and less toxic pesticides such as soaps, oils and microbials. Learn about preventative measures such as careful selection of varieties, site selection and planting, proper watering, how and when to prune, and weed management.

Oaks in the Urban Landscape offers a comprehensive look at the management of oaks in urban areas. Oaks are highly valued in urban areas for their aesthetic, environmental, economic and cultural benefits. However, significant impacts to the health and structural stability of oaks have resulted from urban encroachment. Learn how to effectively manage and protect oaks in urban areas.

Developed especially for backyard orchardists, rare fruit growers, and small-scale growers, The Home Orchard offers an insiders look at both standard growing methods and unique innovative practices. Learn which species grow best in different regions and soils, which varieties to select, how to plant, water, fertilize, prune and graft your tree, how to diagnose problems, control pests, and more.


Pests and diseases

This classic handbook adapts scientifically based pest management techniques to the needs of the home gardener. Pests of the Garden and Small Farm covers insects, plant diseases, and weeds of fruit and nut trees and vegetables using minimal use of broad-spectrum pesticides.

Carry this pocket-sized set of 32 laminated Tree Fruit Pest ID Cards as a handy field guide for identifying major pests and diseases in California deciduous tree fruits and nuts. Each card includes a description and close-up photographs of life stages, with references to the appropriate UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines. Also includes information on important natural enemies.

The Natural Enemies Handbook is a comprehensive guide to help you understand how natural predators, parasites, pathogens, competitors, and antagonists can control pests in your landscape. The Quick Guide allows you to easily match natural enemies with specific pests in your crop or landscape. Beautifully and profusely illustrated.

Wildlife Pest Control Around Gardens and Homes will help you determine when a control method is necessary and what your options are. The integrated pest management guidelines offer the widest range possible of both preventive and population reduction methods for common bird, mammal and reptile pests. From cliff swallows to rattlesnakes, bats to voles, deer to woodpeckers, this volume will help you identify, appraise, and monitor your wildlife pest situation.

Pests of Landscape Trees and Shrubs is the ultimate guide to managing insect, mite, weed, plant disease, and nematode pests. You will get valuable information on how to use environmentally safe, ecologically based IPM methods; landscape designs that prevent pests; how to select resistant varieties; advice on the use of less-toxic pesticides; and tips on planting, irrigating, and other plant-care cultural activities that help in avoiding problems.

This set of pocket-size, sturdy, laminated Landscape Pest Identification Cards are a handy quick reference covering 80 common insects and mites, 40 diseases, 20 beneficial insects, and a variety of other disorders and invertebrate pests. Each pest is identified by a description and excellent close-up color photographs of important symptoms and life stages. Also includes descriptions of natural enemies and suggestions for least toxic management options.

Abiotic Disorders of Landscape Plants contains a wealth of information to help you diagnose disorders caused by environmental, physiological or other nonbiological factors. You will learn how to diagnose disorders such as nutrient deficiencies, salinity, pH, sunburn, air pollution, herbicide, mechanical injuries, lightning, wind, and hail.



Weeds of California and Other Western States: This encyclopedic yet easy-to-use guide is the most comprehensive guide to weed identification in the West ever published. Covering 262 individual entries, including a full description of 451 species and another 361 plants compared as similar species, representing 63 plant families yet organized so the information you need is easy to find.

Based on the bestselling Weeds of California and Other Western States; this set of 48 Weed Pest Identification and Monitoring Cards is a handy field companion covering the most common weeds. Each is identified with a description and excellent close-up color photographs, along with habitat, distribution and management tips.

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