Deep Rooted Wisdom

Jenks's latest book, Deep-Rooted Wisdom, is a critically-acclaimed keepsake. Read more below and get yours today!

"Don't just pick this up as a gardening guide; as you pick this man's amazing brain, and read between the lines for glimpses of his wry humor… feel his loving heart as well."

  • Fleder Rushing, one of America's most respected gardeners and founder of the Slow Gardening movement


Gardening used to be simple. It used to be a sincere and meaningful part of life. It was done to feed the body and soul, to get in touch with yourself and the earth. But it’s changed rapidly and drastically over time.

Nowadays, gardening has become stylistically competitive. It’s been whittled down to a marketing tactic, a shopping experience. And this change has had drastic effects on our planet, including contributing to the problems of pollution and resource waste. 

This book is a plea for us to take gardening back from the marketing companies and to return to traditional-organic gardening, told through stories of old gardeners, farmers, and country people.

Building on old-school lessons, Jenks Farmer weaves stories from wise gardeners with the most modern science and artful design toward gardening and living more gently for the earth and ourselves.


Each chapter of this book is organized into four sections. First, Jenks introduces two experienced gardeners - their homes as well as a specific lesson to be learned from them. Second, through narrative, he analyzes the history behind that lesson, including how modern horticulture deals with it. Third, Jenks describes how he's merged old and new on his own farm, in various botanical gardens, and in private landscapes. He also shows how these methods can work for anyone. Finally, each chapter ends with a contribution from a nationally known gardener explaining how he or she sees the topic at hand.

Most of Jenks's gardener mentors interviewed in the book are self-taught, dirty-handed gardeners and include Ruth Knopf, Francis Parker, David Haskell, Linda Proffitt, Jim Martin, and Ryan Gainey.



Garden and Gun Deep Rooted Wisdom made their list of only three "must read", plant books for the summer!

GardenRant! This is a very trendy, thoughtful gardening website.

New York Times Here is a mention of the book in a gardening article which featured our farm and gardens in photographs..

Weekly Hubris Most gardening books seem to fall into one of two categories: pretty books filled with photographs of unattainable gardens, or how-to tutorials on a particular technique or style. Jenks has done something rather different here. Deep-Rooted Wisdom urges a different way of thinking about gardening.

LowCountry Weekly I love this one because it was one of the first reviews, and it's from one of my mentors, featured in Deep Rooted Wisdom in the chapter on design, from Beaufort, SC. This journalist interviewed me while I was distracted in an ICU waiting room at University Hospital. She captured my hopes for the book.

Free Times This interviewer has been such a great supporter of gardening for decades in Columbia.

The Nature of Things This is a blog about birding. It's cool to recognize the connections between all things living.

Jasper The arts magazine that recognizes that garden-making is an art. There are so many people in the modern-art world who no longer understand this.

Publishers Weekly This is one of the few links on the Amazon review list.

 It's Not Work It's Gardening! Here's one from great plant and garden blogger from Saint Louis, Missouri.

Want to learn more? Explore the images below for a sneak-peek at what topics Deep-Rooted Wisdom explores: