We have a floor-standing piece of sculpture with an old woman watering flowers, all of which have faces. It always such a delight for us to see these beauties smiling and laughing, so we really appreciate this children's book.

William Lach is an enthusiastic gardener and editor who has worked with a number of botanical gardens. Young boys and girls will enjoy traveling through the pages here with a bumblebee who introduces his flower friends (each with his or her own distinctive personality). Among those we meet are Marigold who scares bugs away, Sunflower who likes to bask in the sun, Hollyhock who dresses in black, Camellia who has no scent, Apple Blossom who loves bees, and Franklinia who's a late bloomer. After this edifying journey, Lach presents a glossary of flowers with step-by-step instructions for growing three flower-friend gardens.

Parents and grandparents who are eager to enlighten their children about the importance of ecology and a reverence for nature will want to purchase this picture book illustrated by Doug Kennedy. Gardens are special places — spiritual places — because they engage our senses, evoke our sense of wonder, bathe us in beauty, and connect us to a wider nonhuman world.