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The Allotment Book Paperback – 4 Feb 2008

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The Allotment Book + The Essential Allotment Guide: How to Get the Best out of Your Plot + Allotment Month  by Month
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Product details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Collins (4 Feb. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007270771
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007270774
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 1.8 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 22,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Andi Clevely has spent thirty-five years as a working gardener. After taking a degree in English at Oxford he began his gardening career on the Crown Estate at Windsor Great Park. Thereafter he was for many years employed as head gardener in private service (initially for J.B. Priestley and Jacquetta Hawkes). He now lives in Wales, where he writes about gardening and tends his own hillside garden. His many books include Patios, Water in the Garden, City Garden, Plants in Pots and the bestselling Allotment Garden. As a journalist he writes regularly for The Garden, Homes and Gardens, The Field and BBC Gardener's World Magazine. In 2003 he won the Garden Writers' Guild Award for Practical Journalist of the Year.

Product Description

Review

'It is full of colourful and relevant illustrations…The content is packed with excellent down-to-earth advice. Andy Clevely captures the essence of the allotment, showing how it is a relaxing a socialble way to garden. The Allotment Book is a must for the bookshelf.' - The Garden magazine

'This is an excellent book.' - The Telegraph

'It's the ultimate guide to a bumper harvest.' - Sunday Magazine

'Clear and concise, it will take pride of place in your garden shed.' - Daily Mail

‘This book testifies the new vibrancy of allotment culture, and provides all the knowledge needed to turn a patch of soil into a lifelong adventure.’ - The Northern Echo

‘This is a book you’ll want to return to again and again.’ - Garden Answers

‘This book is excellent, rising above the usual dutiful trek through chores and cultivars and capturing the life-expanding possibilities of a new plot.’ - Optima Magazine

About the Author

Andi Clevely is one of Britain’s most renowned gardening writers, and has written over 20 gardening books. He is also a regular TV presenter, appearing on Granada’s Cook’s Garden and From the Ground Up for Carlton.


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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

93 of 96 people found the following review helpful By Ms. H. R. Gibbon on 1 Sept. 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have always wanted to grow my own, but I've never had the confidence to go for it.

This book gives you detailed tables of sowing and planting times, seasonal guides,advice on sellecting what to grow and even the odd recipe too. It is written in a clear and concise fashion, with lots of helpfull (and pretty) photographs.

I particularly like the seasonal guides as they have "Sow Now; Plant Now; In Season Now" in one quick reference column at the start of the "chapter".

It answers every question that a virgin allotment holder could ask. I would highly recommend it.
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143 of 148 people found the following review helpful By I. M. Foreman on 12 July 2006
Format: Hardcover
I've had an allotment for years and got this book as a present but I've never put it on the shelf since. Andi Clevely is a great read and the book is laid out so well I can dip into it so easily to find the right information. It has definitely inspired me to try some crops which I haven't grown before, like aubergine and chillies. The calendar section is partciularly useful for its 'last chance to sow' and 'planning ahead' features, and has some useful recipes. I would recommend this book for allotmenters new and old, as well as kitchen gardeners.
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71 of 74 people found the following review helpful By K. James on 10 Aug. 2006
Format: Hardcover
I have always wanted to have a go at growing my own veg but quite frankly did not know where to start. I needed a book that would spell out the basics, give me pictures and provide a detailed calendar showing when I should be doing what.

This book is perfect. It is well written, the directions are clear and the pictures informative. It is already well thumbed and next year I will be better! Congratulations to the author.
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88 of 99 people found the following review helpful By R. Ivison on 26 April 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If, like me, you need an allotment book which assumes you know v little, but have already made the decision to work an allotment, don't necessarily put this book at the top of your list. i didn't need a chapter telling me why people have allotments. i didn't need recipes. i didn't need to know that someone has been labeled "the queen of herbs" by jamie oliver. i didn't need a page on bees. i need a book that allows me to look up raspberries, rhubarb, potatoes, courgettes, or whatever, and be directed to a page with everything i needed to know about those fruits/vegetables, plus a section that outlines everything i need to plan for each season. the latter section is here, and it is *almost* acceptable, but it assumes too much prior knowledge. if, like me, you didn't pick up a lifetime's worth of gardening tips from your ancient relatives, e.g. you don't know exactly how to "force" a vegetable, how to prune, etc., then this book isn't the one you need. fair play to the guy - it probably does have a large audience and it's good value for money - but it isn't being marketed at its real audience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Wiltshire Bookworm TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 21 Dec. 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you're lucky enough to be allocated a plot (or half-plot) at your local allotment, this guide will quickly get you up to speed with getting the most from your plot.

Designing your plot layout to work best for you and to minimise problems via crop rotation is tackled first, followed by a directory of vegetables to grow (both the usual suspects and more unusual crops) , techniques to use and ending with a guide to the seasonal year are all explained in detail, accompanied by lavish photographs and sprinkled with seasonal recipes. The allotment tradition of recycling anything that comes to hand is also catered for with a number of projects to try throughout the book.

With this guide to hand, you'll have a prize winning plot in half the time and be the envy of all the 'old hands'.
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41 of 47 people found the following review helpful By @GeekZilla9000 TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 Dec. 2006
Format: Hardcover
..I got myself a plot on an organic farm ealrier this year. Apart from growing the odd thing whilst I grew up, I was starting from scratch.

This book doesn't go into great detail about every plant, but it isn't an encyclopaedia of allotment plants so it isn't to be expected.

It does give excellent important notes for plants though and contains information about the whole allotment experience.

There are photographs galore to inpsire allotmenteers, the calendar section has been a godsend to newbies like me, and the recipes section is great too (my wife used his carrot cake recipe and it was gorgeous! Thanks Heather!).

He gives advise on companion planting, composting, storring your harvest, and many more essential matters.

I learn't a lot from reading his book, you can really feel his passion for growing fruit and veg, and this rubs off onto the reader.
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By Dr R TOP 500 REVIEWER on 7 May 2015
Format: Paperback
Interest in growing fruit, vegetables and flowers has never been greater so I approached this book enthusiastically. When this book was published in 2006, its author, Andi Clevely, had had over 35 years’ experience as a working gardener. He was also struggling to reclaim a grassed-down allotment in mid-Wales and enthusing members of his family about the joys of growing their own. Expertly qualified as a practical gardener, allotment holder and enthusiastic communicator.

The book which covers all aspects of vegetable and fruit production is divided into four sections – ‘The perfect allotment’ which covers planning, crop rotation, choosing the bed system, equipment - 19 pages; ‘Crops for your allotment’ which suggests how to select crops [root vegetables, legumes, brassicas, the onion and pumpkin families, leaves and salads, stem and perennial vegetables, summer-fruiting vegetables, herbs, fruit and edible flowers] – 55 pages; ‘Cultivating your allotment’ that addresses the hard graft including clearing the plot, improving the soil, how to water, weed, harvest and store – 40 pages; and ‘The allotment year’ describing what to expect throughout the year – 48 pages.

Within each section there are a total of six one-page ‘allotment stories’ [‘floating’ allotments in Amiens, ethnic crops, allotments and mental health, organic community gardening, the mutual benefits of allotments and beekeeping, and poultry rearing] and the book has a list of resources [seed and plant suppliers and relevant organisations from which to seek further information] and a comprehensive index.

The book is profusely illustrated in colour; some illustration is necessary but there are too many general pictures, some full page size, in a book that has such a wide coverage.
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