Ultimate Book of Small Gardens
Reviewed by Gordon Roberts
GRAHAM RICE, author of
22 gardening books and Chelsea Flower Show judge, grew up in a small
garden, his own first garden was tiny and he has created gardens
in small spaces ever since. In a phrase, he's well-qualified on
Here, then, is a master
class offering practical advice on designing a small space to meet
your needs, whether in an existing garden or an empty plot.
As Rice puts it, the
one thing the size of a garden should not restrict is your imagination.
The book strolls through
structural features, the practicalities (such as weed prevention,
pruning and composting), garden styles and stocking the garden.
There's a brief chapter, too, on preventing problems; looking at
pest and disease prevention and control.
Where Rice's eye and
experience really excel is in the final chapter entitled Plants
His advice is to the
point. On hedging, for instance, he says: "planting hedges in a
small garden is a risky business because they can take space that
can be better used for more attractive plantings"; on water gardens:
"Even the smallest garden has room for a water feature of some kind
but, when planting, it is important you choose varieties carefully."
There's also a useful
plant list for difficult situations, but remember to reverse the
two poles for New Zealand conditions.
Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH