139 of 140 people found the following review helpful
This review is from: RHS Encyclopedia of Gardening: RHS Bi-centennial Edition (Hardcover)
This is easily the best gardening book I have ever bought. It is complete and comprehensive. If you are looking for a how-to book, this is the one for you. Unlike so many of the frothy-pretty-picture books published in this field today, this is a gardening book written for gardeners as opposed to people who simply want to extend interior design into their back garden.
The book is divided into sections, dealing with each plant entry by type rather than in alphabetical order. My personal preference would have been to have had an alphabetical treatment, which would have made it easier to find the relevant entry when a problem arises thereby avoiding the need to finger impatiently through the index with a muddy digit. However, this comment belies the degree to which I use the book: it is my first reference point.
It provides concise and practical advice on how to cultivate and propagate the plants featured. Helpful advice is given on pruning. Everything that I grow both in the greenhouse, outside and indoors is covered. In fact every garden plant that I can think of seems to be included.
There is a very useful chapter on growing fruit, which is a topic that tends to get neglected nowadays. I also found the chapter on vegetable gardening to be a useful reference when planning my kitchen garden.
The chapter that deals with "Plant Problems", is commendable for providing a significant number of organic solutions. Another chapter on soils and fertilizers gives all the basics for maintaining a healthy soil balance.
This is a reference book that no serious gardener should be without.