Wednesday, December 13, 2017

The plant sitter by Gene Zion illustrated by Margaret Bloy Graham

First off a warning - The Plant Sitter is a very old (1959) book and so it is out of print.  Many months ago I stumbled across this illustration by Margaret Bloy Graham and I liked it so much I used it as my ipad screen image.  I knew Margaret Bloy Graham from her glorious Harry the Dirty dog books but until today I did not know which book contained this picture.

With Summer holidays approaching this is a book to share.  "You said I could do whatever I liked this summer because we weren't going away on holiday."  Tommy is an enterprising boy.  He finds a job as a plant sitter and he gets a penny a day for each plant.  You can see in the picture above he will be making lots of money!  He also a boy who knows how to care for plants :

"He put those that needed shade on the shady side - and those that needed sun on the sunny side. He watered them carefully - some a lot - and others just a little."

The plants grow and grow and take over the house but Tommy is also a problem solver.  He heads off to the library, reads a book or two about plants and comes home knowing how to propagate cuttings.  When the plant owners return from their holiday they collect their thriving plants and Tommy is able to give baby plants to all the children.  His father has not coped with having a jungle in his house but when it is gone he realises he liked them.  "It was like being in the country ... How about a holiday ... And the very next day they went to the country."

Here is a generous review with many of the pages.  On this blog the author links three books together with a gardening theme.  Here is the Kirkus star review.

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