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4.0 out of 5 stars in an English country...garden, 1 Jun. 2010
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This review is from: The English Gardener (Bloomsbury Gardening Classics) (Paperback)
If you know Cobbett, you know he's robust, idiosyncratic and often at variance with today's ideas. This 170-year-old work is no exception. Don't water your plants? Don't bother to rotate crops? His opinions are thought-provoking and always supported with sensible arguments, though you might think twice before applying them wholeheartedly.

The best section is the first one, of general comments: Cobbett's strength. But most of the book is made up of plant-by-plant accounts of vegetables, fruit and flowers. Inevitably these are not a scintillating read, and they would be more useful if supported by illustrations. But from a practical perspective, they are worth having as an alternative to the conventional wisdom.

I don't feel the book needs notes to make it 'accessible', and nor does the editor provide many: he does little more than flag up the points at which Cobbett's ways are at greatest variance with modern practice.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The one gardening book you must read..., 31 Jan. 2011
This review is from: The English Gardener (Bloomsbury Gardening Classics) (Paperback)
William Cobbett has just simplified gardening. If you are into permaculture, organic growing or just want to know what to do in your garden each month by looking at his 'Kalendar' then this book is essential.

He distills the information down to bare essentials that are easy to understand and totally practical. Well apart from his insistence that you need to dig 3 foot trenches before you start!

His is a world without fertilisers, hosepipes and ride on mowers yet you cannot fail to be inspired by his joy of gardens and endearing comments.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Outspoken Gardener, 13 Sept. 2010
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This review is from: The English Gardener (Bloomsbury Gardening Classics) (Paperback)
William Cobbet was self-opinionated, outspoken - he definitely called a spade a spade - and frequently outrageous in his views. He had an energy that makes nothing of the passage of time and flies out of the pages of this book with undiminished gusto. You have to be a gardener to appreciate the whole of this book, but anyone can enjoy snippets - which is good since you will undoubtedly find yourself saying 'Listen to this bit!' to family and friends. I particularly enjoyed his scathing denunciation of the Jerusalem artichoke.
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The English Gardener (Bloomsbury Gardening Classics)
The English Gardener (Bloomsbury Gardening Classics) by William Cobbett (Paperback - 19 Mar. 1998)
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