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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 5 October 2017
This is a very informative book. It would be better if it had more pictures of the plants and less unnecessary, full-page, decorative ones either of the author making the recipes or of the finished recipes. I found this a bit annoying, as while the book points out where to go for detailed descriptions/pictures of plants for collecting (or even for buying - plants are not always labelled with their Latin names), it would've been better, surely, to include good pictures of the plants, hence only 4 stars. The book has a section describing the basics, so what basic ingredients and equipment you need, the different ways you can use and prepare plants, then the recipes and last a section about the plants. It doesn't require buying expensive equipment, most of the items listed are cheap, readily available and many will already have most of them, same for ingredients. While this is about growing your own drugs, the book also includes many items that can, or in many cases, will need to be bought (unless you make your own essential oils and have a very large, well-stocked garden), so there is something here for those who have only a very small garden or no garden. He mentions plants that can be grown on a windowsill, and some of the recipes use only a few ingredients that you can either grow in the smallest of spaces or buy from a supermarket, or collect from parks or the wild. There are lots of recipes, for common ailments and for cosmetics, all of which are quite simple to make, and many which use only a few ingredients, but still sound effective. In the section about plants, there are further uses listed for each, sometimes with additional recipes, and a brief description of how to grow or where to find. There's also a resources section at the end, for the specialist items mentioned (which are few). As it is, I am very impressed by the contents, and will doubtless try out some of the recipes, but if this had also included good pictures of the plants, I would've been utterly enthusiastic about it, as the stuff is all achievable and easy, while still very helpful. But the pics let it down: the big, full size pictures are all in the section with the recipes and even where they show one of the plants used, it doesn't tell you which this is. In many cases it is obvious, or the ingredients, such as conkers, are really well known, but it still wouldn't have hurt to label the pictures. Then, in the plant section, the pictures with the plants are tiny, and often only show the part you're supposed to use, so you don't ever get to see the whole plant for identification purposes. Also, it would've been useful, with some plants, where there are different varieties, to explain which ones are better or preferable, if any. It seems you can use all types of eucalyptus, although it's not very explicit about this, and one specific type of hawthorn is mentioned, but no others. Annoying, if like me, you've got access to a hawthorn bush but not sure whether it's this variety or not.. Although that's a far more minor issue. Overall, was pleasantly surprised by this book - was a bit dubious about whether it was worthwhile, not having heard of the author before, and with plenty of books about making your own herbal remedies being disappointing. But am so pleased I bought this. I bought this 2nd hand, and it was in excellent condition, so very good value, but this would also be a good present and probably well worth the new price.. Definitely recommend it, despite the pics..
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on 4 June 2016
It's great for making remedies yourself, but you have to have herbs - several of them growing in the garden. I've only got Rosemary, Lavender, Sage & Lemon Balm. I have got lots of Essential Oils as well, so must look through it properly to see what I could make.
I do prefer natural cures to chemical drugs, though - very much so. Drugs usually have awful side effects and once you start relying on them, your body is on the way to falling apart. I believe that for every ailment, there is a cure growing out there somewhere, but then of course is all down to personal choice.
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on 3 December 2017
Great book, very interesting. Probably most useful for passionate gardeners. Contains some very useful tips and I'm looking forward to trying some of the recipes and growing some of the plants. Will look out for others in the shops but don't think I'll find them all!
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on 14 April 2017
Great book and finally a recipe book that I understood! Had some brilliant ideas in it but I would recommend buying it secondhand as I feel the cover price brand-new is rather expensive. The copy I received only cost a few pounds and was in excellent condition from a third party seller.
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on 16 April 2013
I bought this looking for remedies to help me with pain, sadly I just got the usual hints at help so found it no use to me, however, my neighbour who loves growing his garden each year has taken it to heart and he absolutely loves it. I'm so glad i's not gone to waste and is being massively enjoyed by my neighbour and his friends who've actually ordered their own copies of it.
One thing, I didn't expect it to be hardback, nor as thick as it is. It's a huge amount of information with remedies and suggestions for most ailments.
If unlike me you're a green fingered alien who loves the garden vibe, you need yo buy this.
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on 24 April 2017
Fantastic book, following being diagnosed with a few health issues I found myself watching one of wongs tv programmes on the food channel. I thoroughly enjoyed watching it so I find he did this book and bought it. The book has some really useful information in it.
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on 15 April 2009
I am really pleased with this book - it follows all the stuff from the brilliant TV series. Loads of bold pictures that actually help show you what you are doing. Brilliant ideas for me to have a go at and loads of amazing recepies! Only tiny slight niggle - might have been useful to have a list of seasonal availability for getting the ingrediants fresh. Although it does say that dried can be used, my preference would be for fresh and it would be a little easier to know exactly when they are available.
Totally would recommend this book and hope there will be another very soon - even my kids love it and look forward to trying out all the goodies inside!
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on 13 June 2009
I've used various alternative therapies for years and have always gone to nature first when needing treatment for common ills. I watched the BBC programme and couldn't wait to get a copy of the book. I've got a list of James Wong's recipes I'm preparing to try, but thought the book would have done well to go into more detail when identifying plants. The little pictures with each plant in the back of the book are nice, but unless a person knows a plant absolutely (like nettles or conkers) identifying might become tricky. I'll probably buy a book separately to do this. Having written that, I'm very pleased to have the book and will recommend it!
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on 5 January 2018
not sure I would bother to do any of these recipes - glad 2nd hand copy - his other books are better
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on 8 November 2013
I bought this as a joke, along with a 'grow your own boyfriend' for a client of mine who was 100 years old this birthday. Didnt know what to get her and she has a brilliant sense of humour. She actually said she would read it as she was interested to see if there was anything in there of interest. She saw the funny side of both gifts. The item arrived very quickly and was well packaged.
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