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  • #76
    ran across a copy of THE COTTAGE GARDENER & COUNTRY GENTLEMAN'S COMPANION 1853 for sale on Ebay, and thought it would probably like a new home with me. (it is a little the worst for wear but still usable after over 150 years)

    Having just received it today, I found this valuable nugget of information in the first few pages on preparing a new Fruit garden - the author decries the practice on some people of having their ground dug down to a depth of more than 5 feet and removing the sub-soil, to have it replaced with a better sort, as being very wasteful of effort - so anyone contemplating this sort of excavation on their allotments should be warned :-)

    (It always amazes me the amount of labour that was invested in gardens of bye-gone days considering all the digging was done by hand - I mean how much would it cost to hand dig a new lake these days ?)

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    • #77
      Just bought a couple of Nigel Slater books - about cooking the veg that he grows in his garden.
      I read his childhood autobiography "Toast" many years ago and enjoyed it. His writing style appeals to me, when he writes about "toast" I could taste it, smell it, yearn for a slice - so I thought I'd read more of his writing - "The kitchen diaries" and "Tender Vol 1".
      They arrived this morning - and the postman staggered away, clutching his back. They're not the slim paperbacks I expected, something to read in bed to send me to sleep dreaming about food and gardens.
      Oh No!! Kitchen diaries is big enough at 400 pages - "Tender" is a 600 page hardback and weighs a ton!! If I fell asleep reading that it would break my nose.
      I've just read the chapter on courgettes and feel inspired by several of his quick and simple recipes - and to pick them the size of my index finger.

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      • #78
        I'm a big Nigel fan
        Cheers

        Danny

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        • #79
          I don't really have any gardening books, and the two I have aren't really about gardening. However, they are nice books about gardens. One is 'In and Out the Garden' by Sarah Midda, it's more a coffee table book of garden whimsy, beautiful little illustrations, snippets of gardening folklore, the odd recipe.

          the other is 'Rhapsody in Green' by Charlotte Mendelsson, wonderfully written (am currently reading again). No real info or knowledge to impart, more waxing lyrical about her love of gardens. If you're a gardener who likes shoving random plants into unsuitable spaces in the hope they will get something exotic to eat, or foraging on roadsides, or peering into other people's gardens to have a good neb, then you may well like this!

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          • #80
            Because of this thread I've ordered four books, I'll never learn.
            What do you think of "Dig for Victory" and similar wartime books? They would be interesting but are they worth it?
            Any recommendations will be eagerly investigated.
            Thanks

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            • #81
              I find Dig for Victory books and other "historical" gardening books very interesting. Just finished reading The Garden Cottage Diaries https://www.amazon.co.uk/Garden-Cott...ct_top?ie=UTF8 about life in 1790. Growing her own food, living without running water, cooking on the hearth and so on. Gives you an appreciation of how difficult it was to survive then but also how wasteful we are with our modern resources.
              I've read it twice now and enjoyed it each time.

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              • #82
                Thanks to reading this thread 5 books have arrived for a total of less than a tenner. the stand out one for me is The Country Railway saying that many lines were closed as a result of fiddled passenger and freight numbers and Like the Somerset and Dorset by rerouting goods to other lines.
                On the recommendations here the Readers Digest book 2.77.and looking through earlier lots of good advice for different vegetables, well worth reading.
                Others are 101 Ideas for Veg in small places, a quick guide and not a lot of detail, quite good.
                Growing Food in Small Gardens, more generalised and again a good read.
                Lastly Ration Book Cookery with history too. Love this, how about Mock beef rissoles...rice, stock, mustard,
                horseradish, marmite. Must try that.
                Will read these and get Dig for Victory shortly.
                Best book I have ever read, Tale of Two Cities

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                • #83
                  Two more books arrived today, How to Grow Food, a wartime guide. Not great, a section on keeping pigs and chickens, I'll read it through but it isn't a go to book.
                  Percy Thrower, Fresh Veg and Herbs from Your Garden.1974. Photos of him gardening in a suit, shirt and tie and never looking mucky. Easy to follow, good information and old favourites recommended.
                  Clearly written, I swear I could hear his voice reading along with me.

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                  • #84
                    Huge fan of gardening books, Joy Larkcom above all for information and inspiration, Jekka herb book, Mark Diacono on unusual edibles but also, for more general inspiration/armchair gardening, Beth Chatto Garden Notebook, Eleanor Perenyi Green Thoughts. Anyone read that? @veggiechicken I think you might like it. I share your inability not to buy more...love Ken Fern Plants for a Future too. Help.
                    And always recommend Rhapsody in Green too.

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                    • #85
                      Originally posted by robbra View Post
                      Two more books arrived today, How to Grow Food, a wartime guide. Not great, a section on keeping pigs and chickens, I'll read it through but it isn't a go to book.
                      Percy Thrower, Fresh Veg and Herbs from Your Garden.1974. Photos of him gardening in a suit, shirt and tie and never looking mucky. Easy to follow, good information and old favourites recommended.
                      Clearly written, I swear I could hear his voice reading along with me.
                      Heard on the radio the other day that one of Percy Thrower's old gardens in Birmingham which appeared so immaculately kept when I saw it on TV in the 60's, is now part of a wild area in the botanic gardens there - not sure if Percy will be rotating in his grave or not :-)

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