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Vegetables in a Small Garden: Simple steps to success (RHS Simple Steps to Success) Paperback – 1 Mar 2007
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on 9 September 2017
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
While it has some nice ideas about planting veg in small gardens, most of this book is just a general guide to growing veg, rather than specifically about how to pack them into a small space. The concept of "small" is obviously relative and much of the info assumes you're able to position a dedicated veg plot, a raised bed or two and/or a decent size greenhouse, so this is more for general garden growing than info about growing veg in very small spaces. It does cover some ideas for those with only a balcony or very small garden, but there a few, if any, original ideas. Some stuff about which varieties can be grown containers, some stuff about space saving, but not that much and some of the info is very basic and pretty obvious, like providing drainage for containers and choosing "suitable" varieties (which totally ignores the fact that most varieties and types of veg can be successfully grown in containers). It still tells people to "dig in" organic matter, which is totally outdated info (mulching is much more effective and less work). It does mention mulching, but only emphasises part of the reason for doing this, and otherwise tells you to dig organic matter into the soil, which I don't believe is the most effective use. It tells you to prepare the soil by digging it over, which is also totally outdated and unnecessary labour and mentions "double-digging" for plots with deep topsoil. Why would you want to "double-dig" if you've already got a good, deep topsoil layer? Utter nonsense and a total waste of labour.. It doesn't even mention the fact that digging over a plot or "double-digging" are now heavily contested amongst gardeners, to give beginners an idea, it just presents it as a normal and necessary part of starting a veg plot - no wonder people think growing veg is too much work! There's a long list of tools that veg growers supposedly need, most of which are totally unnecessary and a waste of money - again, no wonder people are put off from growing veg. There's quite a bit of useful info if you're total novice to growing veg, with a page or two dedicated to the requirements of each veg type, which could be useful, but isn't much good to me. For someone who already knows the basics and is looking for ideas about how to grow veg in small spaces, most of the book is useless. There are less than 7 practical ideas for growing in small spaces, most of which just boil down to using containers, mixing veg with other plants and using all available including vertical spaces. Expected a bit more from a book recommended by RHS, but have long noticed RHS tend be conservative when it comes to veg growing. It's cheap, that's about the best that can be said for it, costing less than £10 new. If you want to know about the "proper" (read old-fashioned) way to grow veg, you know pretty much nothing about it, and you want the basics without spending too much money, this could be an ok book, but wouldn't take everything it recommends at face value - whenever it recommends something that's lots of work or costs money, would do some research before you go and "double-dig" your whole plot or buy a load of expensive tools...
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Bought as gift , very much appreciated - pleased with response thank you.
The author of this book appear to be trying to emulate school text books aimed at bottom sets; on each page, only 10-30 per cent of the space is actually taken up with text, while...Read more
I bought this as a present for someone, they seem very happy with it.
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