Jennifer McConkey Library Columns Sebring Public Library

Learn New Hobbies With The Library: Natural Beauty by Jennifer McConkey

mask 3
Jennifer McConkey

Although many businesses and organizations are open to the public, many people are spending more time outside this year.

If you’re interested in improving your outdoor spaces, or bringing a little nature into your home, you can check your local library for helpful information.

Whether you want to get better at flower arranging, indoor gardening, vegetable gardening, flower gardening or landscaping, the Highlands County public libraries have plenty of resources for you.


Because hobbies that involve nature can be easily affected by location and seasons, research can be important.

The libraries have books to help you learn about gardening in Florida in general and about caring for specific types of plants.

Try one of the books listed below or ask a staff member to help you find a different one:

-“Landscaping With Wildflowers & Native Plants”

-“Step-by-Step Landscaping: Planning, Planting, Building”

-“Rodale’s Illustrated Encyclopedia of Gardening and Landscaping Techniques”

-“Commonsense Vegetable Gardening for the South”

-“Your Florida Guide to Butterfly Gardening: A Guide for the Deep South”

-“Yankee’s Guide to Florida Gardening”

-“Rodale’s All-New Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening: The Indispensable Resource for Every Gardener”

-“Southern Living Big Book Of Flower Gardening”

-“Teeny Tiny Gardening: 35 Step-by-Step Projects and Inspirational Ideas for Gardening in Tiny Spaces”

Online Resources

And if you prefer online learning, the library has options for you.

Universal Class has several free courses about landscaping and gardening:

-“Introduction to Gardening”

-“Vegetable Gardening 101”

-“Tropical Gardening 101”

-“Landscaping 101”

-“Floral Arrangement 101”

To sign up for a Universal Class course, visit, click on “Language & Learning,” and then click on the black button that says “Universal Class.”

Either log in or sign up using your library card number.

Once you’re logged in, click “Course Catalog” at the top of the page and search for the class you want to take. Click on the course and then click the green “Join This Course” button.

Try New Ideas

If you want to expand your horizons and try a related hobby, check your local library for books about these topics:

-Rock painting

-Trash-to-treasure crafts


Many crafts and handmade items can be incorporated into garden or landscape designs, so get creative!

Current Hours

Current hours for all three Highlands County libraries are Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday from 9:30 to 5:30. Curbside and walk-up services are offered only on Fridays from 9:30 to 5:30.

This week only, the Sebring branch will be closed on Friday and Saturday (Aug. 28 and 29) for necessary pest control. The outside book drops there will be closed from Thursday evening to Tuesday morning (Aug. 27-Sept. 1).

The Avon Park and Lake Placid libraries will not be affected by this temporary closure.