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How to Grow Your Food: A Guide for Complete Beginners (Green Books Guides) [Paperback]

Jon Clift , Amanda Cuthbert
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
RRP: 5.99
Price: 4.89 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

7 April 2011 Green Books Guides
Perplexed by potatoes? Baffled by beans? Confused by courgettes? Home grown food means fresh, organic, tasty meals, less money spent in a supermarket, lower carbon footprint and best of all, fun! But how do you do it? If you've never opened a seed packet before, and want to grow your food but don't know where or when to start, this book is for you. With advice for the new gardener, covering everything from how to plant seeds, when to pull up the carrot and how to harvest potatoes, this book will sort you out - whether you have a balcony, bare concrete, a patio or a larger patch of ground.

Frequently Bought Together

How to Grow Your Food: A Guide for Complete Beginners (Green Books Guides) + Vegetable Growing Month-by-Month: The down-to-earth guide that takes you through the vegetable year + Gardeners' World: First Time Veg Grower
Price For All Three: 13.67

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Product details

  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Green Books (7 April 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1900322684
  • ISBN-13: 978-1900322683
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 16.2 x 15.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 474,788 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

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Product Description


Lovely size and feel. Clear layout, distinct headings, plenty of photos for each plant, drawings where needed, e.g pinching out tomato side-shoots. Excellent illustrative photos and clear information about what to do. Just 6 headings contain all you need to know answers: Plant or seed? Planting/Sowing, How do *** grow? Looking after your ***, Harvesting, Now What? For me, this is the winner. The information is straightforward, concise, to the point and very easy to understand. I've even picked up a tip or two myself and found myself wishing I'd had this book three years ago when I started the Veg Patch. Forget Dr Hessayon (for now), this book contains excellent clear advice, does not patronise the newbie gardener and I believe (and hope!) it will give beginners the confidence to get started (whether from seed or plant), to succeed and therefore keep going and to explore other varieties in the future. I say again: 9½ out of 10. (And a bargain at only £6.95 cover price!) --UrbanVegPatch blog

About the Author

Amanda and Jon have previously collaborated on other environmental subjects, and have written other titles in the Green Books Guides series: Water: Use Less Save More, Energy: Use Less Save More and Climate Change: Simple things you can do to make a difference.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good basic guide to growing your own vegetables 29 July 2011
If you're a complete gardening novice then you can make a good start with 'How to Grow Your Own Food: A guide for complete beginners'. It's small enough to fit in your bag or your pocket, and printed on 100% recycled paper.

In 128 pages it manages to explain the basics making use of whatever space you have, choosing tools and deciding whether to sow seeds or buy plants. Soil preparation, feeding and watering, weeding and composting and even crop rotation are explained - in enough detail to get you started but not enough to overwhelm.

The common and popular crop plants are then covered - first vegetables, then fruit and finally herbs. Helpful icons indicate quickly whether a crop is grown from seeds or plants, will thrive in a container or needs to be out in the garden, or even grown indoors. All of the crops chosen are described as 'easy', but as any experienced gardener will tell you, that's a matter of opinion and situation. We all have things we can grow without effort, and things we struggle with.

The only vegetable which they recommend not be grown in containers is sweetcorn, which I have successfully grown in pots; they also say you can grow purple sprouting broccoli and broad beans in pots, which you can, but they are not particularly easy or productive grown that way. But then which plants will thrive in containers is also a matter of personal preference in some cases - it depends on how large a container you can use and how committed you are to feeding and watering your plants.

Each plant gets one or two double-page spreads, with everything you need to know to sow, plant, care for and harvest your crops. There are colour pictures for each one, too.
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5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT BOOK 24 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
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5.0 out of 5 stars good 29 July 2012
This book is very useful for a complete novice I have successfully planted and seen grow a number of different types of vegetables so far.
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5.0 out of 5 stars GROW YOUR OWN FOOD 11 Dec 2011
By wbb
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.2 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bountiful harvest for the novice gardener 5 Dec 2011
By buchens - Published on
I just love it when a book delivers what its title promises. This is a true primer for the novice gardener who wants to grow a bountiful harvest of veggies, fruits and herbs. The authors touch upon everything you'll need to know to prepare, plant and harvest your bountiful garden. It's filled with easy to read guidelines and instructions. Another plus is the book's small-sized format which makes it a very portable reference to bring out to the garden or the nursery/plant center. After the first reading, you will feel confident enough to 'dig' right in and begin. All the essentials are covered in a few pages and the additional information on sowing, buying, watering and feeding - handy quick go-to references are quickly accessible thanks to the colored shaded text boxes. Each plant is a 'chapter' accompanied by several photos. I found this book to be the much needed 'helping hand' a novice longs for. Enjoy !
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Illustrations and guidelines 8 April 2014
By maty knapp - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Though this book is small, it's big on illustrations and information especially for a beginner. It walks you through the beginning stages of preparing to plant through harvesting. I would recommend this book to any beginner wanting to achieve success in growing their own food.
3.0 out of 5 stars Very informative, but not what I was looking for 19 May 2013
By Mama Rikki - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book has great information on each vegetable featured in a concise one-page format. If you would like to know how to choose and care for the best vegetables for your home garden, this is your book. I, however, was looking for information on how to set up my home garden - prepping soil, setting up the garden, gardenbox vs. in ground vs. potted plants - and that wasn't really there. Once I get myself set up, I'll probably use this book to choose and then care for my garden.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good for beginners 21 July 2013
By S. Martin - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have not finished reading it yet but I like what I have seen so far. I can't wait to start planting my garden.
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