- Paperback: 144 pages
- Publisher: Batsford Ltd; New edition edition (29 July 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0713487526
- ISBN-13: 978-0713487527
- Product Dimensions: 16 x 23 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,612,148 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
We Made a Garden Paperback – 29 Jul 2002
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Crammed with good advice. . . . I defy any amateur gardener not to find pleasure, encouragement, and profit from We Made a Garden --Vita Sackville-West
This garden story is filled with wisdom and insight --English Garden
Gardening is like everything else in life, you get out of it as much as you put in. No one can make a garden by buying a few packets of seeds or doing an afternoon's weeding. You must love it, and then your love will be repaid a thousandfold, as every gardener knows. --Margery Fish --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Inside Flap
First published in Britain in 1956 and never before available in America, We Made a Garden is the classic story of a unique and enduring English country garden. One of Britain's most esteemed gardening writers recounts how she and her husband set about creating an exemplary cottage garden from unpromising beginnings on the site of the former farmyard and rubbish heap that surround their newly purchased home in the countryside of Somerset, England. Each imbued with a strong set of horticultural opinions and passions, Mr. and Mrs. Fish negotiate the terrain of their garden, by turns separately and together, often with humorous collisions. From the secret to cultivating the smoothest lawn to the art of lifting and replanting tulip bulbs to the landscaping possibilities of evergreens, the diverse elements of successful gardening--and delightful writing--are bound together by Mr. and Mrs. Fish's aspiration to cultivate that most precious and slow-growing quality--the fundamental character of a good garden. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Marjery Fish, with 'help' from her husband, tracks the transformation of an unpromising site to a garden that still draws visitors from around the world. Her knowledge is generously shared, both experienced and new gardeners will learn much from her, both about garden design and how to use plants. She has a gift for describing plants that is mouthwatering, plantaholics beware!
What lifts this book however, is not just the quality of her writing, it is the chacter of Mrs Fish herself, funny, self deprecating, honest about failures and mistakes. She is the practical gardening friend that every gardener would like to have. As you read the book you are aware that she too has experienced the satisfaction of a hard days garden labouring, the obsession that sends you out at night to check on your plants (in her case climbing walls in evening dress to hand water), the frustration when a loved plant just refuses to grow for you ...
This is not a quick fix garden makeover book, it's a journey which celebrates the pleasure that comes from creating and sharing a garden. Don't dismiss it because of the original publishing date, Marjery Fish has so much to offer present day gardeners; not least the relief that they don't have the terrifying Mr Fish overseeing every move.
There are make-over gardeners, low-maintenance gardeners, spend-to-impress gardeners. I'm not sure that this book would appeal to them, even though they would learn things. The people who will love this little book are the ones who have discovered a love of plants for their own sake. Who enjoy the small and delicate, the humble as well as the tricky. Who are either taking tentative steps towards something they think they might come to really love, or who already love it, and can say "Yep. We did that. Ended up moving ours, too."
I regret not reading this book years ago. I too had a husband who would say "What are you bothering with that for?" Margery Fish would have understood!
She writes without an agenda and the book contains what I'd call a running gag; the battle between herself and her husband about how the garden should evolve. Perhaps 'battle' is not quite accurate. It is more that Margery conducts a war of skirmishes, setting up small areas of rebel resistance. The book thus becomes not only about plants but also, I think, about the position of women in mid-20th century England. She should be a feminist's icon.
A must for the gardener who does not aspire to an estate and an army of gardeners.
The details of the garden are also beautifully written, and, as another reviewer has also said, the book warrants a second reading - probably with google at the ready to find photos of all the plants mentioned. Many of the tips about growing conditions and which plants go well together are really useful, even to someone like me whose garden is tiny! The book follows Margery as she learns about gardening while building what became a classic garden, but she is not shy of admitting to mistakes and problems and I think anyone who enjoys gardening and reading will probably enjoy this book.
I've given it 4 stars instead of 5 because there are no photos and sometimes I really wanted to see exactly what the place looked like! I thought this would actually be more of a negative point but the descriptions are wonderful, however I do think this is a book crying out for a new, illustrated, edition.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A nicely bound and printed edition of a gardening classic. It is divided into short and readable chapters and is by no means taxing. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Handelian
Love the way this is written. You feel as if you are actually there and inspired me.Published 6 months ago by daisyx
an old book, but still relevant to todays gardener, the garden Margery Fry made is open to the publicPublished 8 months ago by jane edward
Prompt service, book in good condition, I could not put the book down, Margery Fish was a gardener ahead of her time, lots of horticultural advice and plants, showing her hard... Read morePublished 19 months ago by Mr Gary Young
Not bought for me ( I'm no gardener) but my wife was delighted - she's been looking for Margery Fish books for years. She tells me it rated five stars - who am I to argue?Published on 23 Nov. 2013 by Ian Read
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