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The Gourmet GardenerBOOK REVIEWS

The Gourmet Gardener

Bob Flowerdew
Kyle Cathie
Distributed by Reed
Reviewed by Graeme Rainey

BRITAIN'S Bob Flowerdew has made a name on his home turf as an organics advocate. He appears on British television programmes like Muck and Magic, on radio gardening panels and has written several books espousing organics.

His latest offering is a stylish repackaging of old wisdom between new and trendy covers. He writes with panache, drawing on his own wide experience to detail specific tips for growing veggies from garden to table. As the title suggests, freshness and taste -- not just size or quantity - is the aim of gardening.

The author's golden rule for veggie growing is to give every plant "a very generous amount of space" before answering "the needs, and tricks" of each vegetable to make the difference between a good crop and an excellent one.

Besides veggies, fruits and nuts and berries, herbs and salad offerings and oddly, given the title, perfumed flowers are covered chapter by chapter. He weighs up favourite varieties while a final chapter gives various methods of preserving produce.

There are some useful tips as well as eccentricities. Readers may judge for themselves which category using snails as recyclers in a similar way to worms falls into. The preponderance of pictures of Bob must be testament to his British popularity (but some may find a full-page portrait of the author biting into a peach less than appealing).

Much of this rather pricy book's content will be second nature to WG readers.

Weekend Gardener, Issue 183, 2005, Page 37

Reproduced with permission from the former Weekend Gardener magazine. The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH

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