Set down the smartphone and tablet, turn off your TV and computer (after you read this article, of course), and pick up one of these tangible books found on Houzz, a platform that connects homeowners and professionals. These nine books will give you some inspiration for a new project, make you laugh, or give you great examples to share with clients.

1. “Urban Farms” by Sarah C. Rich
Have a client that’s interested in taking their edible garden a bit further? In this book, Rich profiles 16 innovative urban farms in major metropolitan areas across the country and includes basic how-to tips for such activities as composting, canning, beekeeping and growing vegetables.

2. “Private Landscapes, Modernist Gardens in Southern Californiaby Pamela Burton & Marie Botnick
The authors, a landscape architect and interior designer, profile 20 gardens and their houses with mid-century modernism. Photographs show the original garden alongside new images of updates and renovations.

3. “Gardens Are for Living” by Judy Kameon
Kameon shares inspiration and ways to bring interior design outdoors and to extend a home’s living space. These garden spaces will encourage gathering, entertaining, interacting and relaxing.

4. “Lawn Gone!: Low Maintenance, Sustainable, Attractive Alternatives for Your Yard” by Pam Penick

This book serves as a resource for more information on landscaping with less lawn, including how to remove existing areas of lawn. The guide goes over the basics of replacing lawns with a wide variety of plant options for different regions.

5. “Edible Landscaping” by Rosalind Creasy

With a growing interest in eating healthy, fresh, locally grown foods, edible landscaping is becoming a common request from homeowners. Alongside 300 color photos, Creasy explains how to beautifully incorporate edibles into any landscape.

6. “Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn, 2nd Revised Edition by Fritz Haeg

Another option for clients looking to lose the lawn, this book tells eight stories of regional prototype gardens across the county incorporating edibles into their landscaping and their front yard, instead of solely having a lawn.

7. “Room Outside: A New Approach to Garden Designby John Brookes
Inspiring contemporary garden designs should expand and enhance the living space of any home. In “Room Outside,” Brookes focuses on the importance of gardens and landscaping and advises how to fit the garden design to the space available — no matter how big or small.

8. “The Abundant Garden by Barbara J. Denk & Debra Prinzing
Each of the 9 chapters identifies a different aspect of an “abundant garden” (according to the authors, “one that is effusive, emotional, demonstrative and unrestrained”) and then visits a specific garden that fits that particular aspect. The photography serves as inspiration but the book also features knowledgeable captions with plant identification and the methods used in the image.

9. “The Drunken Botanist” by Amy Stewart
This quirky book is a great conversation starter to add unique herbs, flowers, trees, etc. into a client’s yard. Stewart explores the plants that have been fermented and distilled to make into alcohol over centuries. Recipes included!

What books do you use for inspiration? Share some ideas with us in the comments below.