on 13 June 2002
As a hapless owner of a diminutive, north-facing, crazy-paved, patio garden, I rely on luck and terracotta pots to grow my herbs. Thus a special section on container-growing for each herb in this book is a god-send. The other good thing is the inclusion of more exotic sub-species eg. Thai Horapha and holy basils, which are indispensable to any enthusiastic oriental cook. All in all, this book is a treasure-trove of information and invaluable advice; it is well-written and filled with fantastic photographs and illustrations. It even contains some tempting recipes (but sadly none for Thai green curry - Ms McVicar may note the inclusion of my email address - hint, hint). I don't think I will ever need another book on herbs and I can't wait to get a bigger garden.
on 6 November 2001
This book is invaluable. I am an amateur gardener - the sort who notes the names of plants which look magnificent in someone else's garden, goes and buys the seeds/seedlings/potted up plant and then has not really got a clue what happens next. For years I have been trying to have a successful herb garden but nothing ever quite worked out. No instructions told me what was going to happen in year 2, year 3 and so on. What I should do the season AFTER I has planted/sown the herb. This fantastic book does just that and tells me what will grow where, the best way to propagate, whether the plant will work in a container, whether it needs to be brought in during the winter and then - oh joy - it gives lots of ideas of what the herb can be used for. It is a real must-have for any gardening shelf.