Garden Library

 As well as social prescribing and offering flowers for all, the Friendship Garden next to the village hall has been fortunate in acquiring over 40 books with which to form a small gardening library, free for anyone to use. Many people from Fontmell Magna Parish and beyond have generously donated or lent books and The Potting Shed in Swan’s Yard, Shaftesbury has very kindly contributed others. Thank you all.

The variety of the books is testament to how diverse gardening can be. Subjects range from how to make a wildflower meadow to the great trees of Dorset, memoirs to handbooks for garden design. There are amongst others, books on pests and diseases, ground cover, using polytunnels, rejuvenating a tired garden and gardening in an allotment. Also, manuals and encyclopaedia, books by well-known gardeners and others by specialists and an extensive range of gardening magazines collected over years it seems. The library really does cover most needs. Below is a list of what is available - it was up to date at the beginning of June 2021.

Library books are numbered with three digits (the numbers don’t have a system) which is just inside the cover. They are grouped into four categories at the moment:

  • General gardening related texts
  • How to and specialist skills
  • Design
  • Encyclopaedia

The books are on the shelves of a lovely wooden cabinet, also kindly donated, in the committee room of the village hall. Anyone can use the Friendship Garden Library. All that is needed is for borrowers to write the number of the book they are taking in the small floral notebook in the cabinet, along with their name and the date borrowing began. It would be helpful to check the book back in within a fortnight by writing the date the book was returned.

The village hall will be open during the summer on Wednesday afternoons for the Pop-Up Café between 2 and 4pm and this would be a very good time to browse or borrow. Other times can be arranged by emailing

Please do enjoy looking at what is available and if you have any other volumes that you could lend to the garden or donate, they will be most gratefully received.

View the books available from the library here.