The Green Truck Garden Giveaway: A Neighborhood Story and Almanac

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Overview

This celebration of all things green offers gardening tips, garden lore, and recipes, too!

The neighborhood around Second Street is littered with trash and overgrown with weeds, and the residents of Second Street stay secluded in their gloomy houses. One day, a green truck drives down the block. "We have gardens to give away!" shouts Hastings. "And Green Truck Almanacs!" adds Lura.

This picture book chronicles the blooming of neighborhood ...

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Overview

This celebration of all things green offers gardening tips, garden lore, and recipes, too!

The neighborhood around Second Street is littered with trash and overgrown with weeds, and the residents of Second Street stay secluded in their gloomy houses. One day, a green truck drives down the block. "We have gardens to give away!" shouts Hastings. "And Green Truck Almanacs!" adds Lura.

This picture book chronicles the blooming of neighborhood gardens and neighborhood friendships, and features illustrated pages from The Green Truck Almanac, an easy-to-use collection of gardening tips, ideas, history, resources, and recipes.

When two people pass out seeds and gardening supplies, neighbors who claim to have no interest in gardening are transformed into a community of gardeners. Includes information on gardening and related topics.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Martin (Grandmother Bryant's Pocket) is on familiar, green territory in this environment-friendly neighborhood story. One Saturday morning, a truck rolls down a quiet street and incites a small revolution among unsuspecting residents. The people in the truck offer free soil and seed gardens, as well as "Green Truck Almanacs" brimming with "vegetable stories" and gardening hints. The green warriors cajole three recalcitrant neighbors into accepting rudimentary gardens in buckets and wooden frames. The result is a flowering community. Colorful blooms inspire yard clean-ups; overflowing lettuce leads to neighborly sharing; the grouch who wanted only thornbushes discovers raspberries and bakes a batch of muffins. Gilman's (Toad or Frog, Swamp or Bog?) mix of watercolor and colored pencil brightens from dingy blues and reds into a happy range of yellowy greens as the story progresses. The almanac pages have an old-fashioned botanical quality that contrasts lightly with the broad gestures and smiling faces of the characters, who are depicted in an edgy mix of retro settings, contemporary dress and freeze-frame-like postures. Illustrated snippets from the almanac weave through the story, including a Pueblo prayer for rain, recipes, instructions for planting bucket gardens and tidbits of horticultural history. The enthusiastic narration and lively, varied layout will prompt black and green thumbs alike to plant small and reap big. Ages 5-9. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3Hastings and Lura are two modern Johnny Appleseeds who travel around in their old green pickup searching for ugly towns to beautify with their giveaway gardens. Descending on litter-full Second Street, these do-gooders give their gardening pitch to three odd neighbors: McDermitt, a grouch; Aunt Olive, a ballroom dancer; and Freddy Junior, a bored, freckle-faced kid. Although all three are resistant to adding color, dirt, or excitement to their selfish lives, Lura and Hastings find that the trick to making converts is simply to match the plant to the personality. So McDermitt gets "thornbushes and brambles" (roses and raspberries); Olive gets marigolds and salad vegetables; and Freddy gets pumpkins. Plus, they each get a free copy of The Green Truck Almanac. Once the seeds take off, the three novices are hooked and the whole neighborhood is magically transformed by a clean-up campaign. Sidebar samples from the almanac include folktales and myths surrounding agriculture, natural "bugs-hate-it" potions, and plans for creating butterfly gardens. Garden Giveaway is a bit busy, and Gillman's watercolor and colored-pencil people are reminiscent of the Duracell-charged folks in the campy TV ads. But the excitement of growing plants is undeniable. As long as young readers grasp that a handful of "The sun came up. The sun went down" incantations translate into seasonal timelines and don't become insufferably impatient, they should be inspired to plant something.John Sigwald, Unger Memorial Library, Plainview, TX
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780689804984
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
  • Publication date: 3/11/1997
  • Edition description: 1 ED
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 9 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.86 (w) x 11.33 (h) x 0.42 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2001

    Teaching Kids the value of neighborliness

    This is a wonderful book, it is down to earth in more ways than one. We really like the fact that the charactors giving away gardens from their green truck encourage our kids to think beyond themselves, to the out-of-doors and the others around them. When the neighbors start sharing their gardens and keeping the neighborhood clean and talking together it helps my kids to see that Gardening gives us real connection to what is important in life; sharing our joy and possetions with others and enjoying and respecting our surroundings. These things produce quality of life for the charactors in the book and can do the same when we apply their attitude of generosity and joy to our own lives. Not only is the content excellent, but the pictures are really big and colourful and real-like too!

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