Green Green: A Community Gardening Story

"Green green/ fresh and clean./ Brown brown,/ dig the ground." With a little digging, raking, planting and watering, a garden can grow just about anywhere--even in a cramped lot between city buildings. Green Green is husband-and-wife team Marie Lamba (What I Meant) and landscape architect Baldev Lamba's ode to a greener world, gorgeously illustrated by Barcelonian Sonia Sánchez (Here I Am).

The picture book opens with children frolicking in verdant meadows, butterflies and bees like confetti flung among them. With each passing page, though, the concrete and steel of a city encroaches, shrinking the "green green" to tiny spaces "in between." The city is growing and the children are in danger of losing their green play spaces altogether... until they see the potential in a vacant lot: "Squirrel gray,/ pigeon blue,/ weeds and wildflowers,/ litter, too." They ask the adults, "Brown brown,/ dig the ground?" and soon neighbors join together to create a beautiful community garden that pushes back against the gloomy gray of the city.

Sánchez's illustrations are full of sweet-faced multi-ethnic families in cozy cardigans and mixed-patterned outfits. There's always something new to catch among the pages: a watering can on a fire escape, an old refrigerator in the yard, gardening gloves hanging out of one mom's pocket. The final spread provides ideas to "Make Your World More Green Green" and explains how we can help bees and butterflies. With its simple text and lush artwork, Green Green serves as pure inspiration. Readers of all ages will want to run for their spades and seed packets as soon as the last page is read. --Emilie Coulter, freelance writer and editor

Powered by: Xtenit