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The Edible Garden: How to Have Your Garden and Eat It, Too

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  318 ratings  ·  36 reviews
In this timely new book, BBC star and Gardening World's thrifty and resourceful Alys Fowler shows that there is a way to take the good life and re-fashion it to fit in with life in the city. Abandoning the limitations of traditional gardening methods, she has created a beautifully productive garden where tomatoes sit happily next to roses, carrots are woven between the ...more
Paperback, 260 pages
Published November 19th 2013 by Viva Editions (first published January 1st 2009)
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Average rating 4.24  · 
Rating details
 ·  318 ratings  ·  36 reviews


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Jules
Dec 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookbooks
I've placed this in my Cookbooks folder on Goodreads, but to be honest, there aren't a lot of actual recipes. This is more a book about creating an edible garden made up of a mix of vegetables, herbs and edible flowers.

I like the way Alys Fowler has written this book. It is enjoyable to read. It's probably not the best book for a beginner who just wants basic tips on how to grow vegetables in their garden, as it's not always easy to jump to a specific section. This is more one of those books
...more
Jemima Pett
Aug 08, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So, I was relaxing in the sunshine, wondering what to read next, and wondering what to do in the garden next... so I reached for the Christmas present and started to read. Alys Fowler has a lovely way of bringing a gardening manual into her own garden, informing and not preaching, covering things that most gardeners know with titbits that make the reading worthwhile. It's an approach to gardening in a lovely mixing up of vegetables and flowers that makes for a happy and attractive jumble. And it ...more
Melissa
Oct 27, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library, ebook
Writes like she gardens (in drifts, from one thing to the next, no straight lines, lots of pretty). Not a practical instructional book; a dreaming book.
Emma Cooper
Apr 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gardening
In The Edible Garden, Alys Fowler is trying out a new (to her) system of gardening that's variously called polyculture (what I'd call an aspect of permaculture), edible landscaping, decorative kitchen gardening and ornamental edibles. The idea is to turn a smallish garden into an edible paradise, and the book explains clearly how you might go about that.

Alys covers all the basics about growing from seed, fertilizing, making compost and green manures that you will need to grow edibles without
...more
Karatepop
Mar 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: gardening
I love Alys Fowler's gardening style. Her writing is lovely and there is no sign of the snobbery that often shows up in garden writing (also, fartichokes), the photos of her garden are beautiful, the paper is great (ah, matte photos). She includes information about basic gardening, design, crops (varieties of those crops), recipes, and some resources.

This was originally published in hardcover to go with her BBC series by the same name (which is on YouTube and you should watch it).
Laura
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This book has become a favorite. It has very useful information and fantastic writing (I love her fun and sometimes random commentary). I borrowed it from the library previously but ended up returning it without reading much; at the time it was too overwhelming to me.

A year older, and with more gardening experience under my belt, it was perfect! I love the way it is put together with general information first and then specific plants to grow and what they do well with. Then practical
...more
Holly Lenz
Oct 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A guide for a useful garden

The Edible Garden is a fun, easy to read guide for gardeners wishing their garden to be a useful space. The informative book goes over plant varieties, gardening methods, and even food recipes. There is a lot of information in this book! The author is located in England, so not all of the information was relevant for me in Nevada, but I learned quite a bit and am inspired for next years growing season.
Justin
Oct 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gardening
A little less detailed/organized than my favorites.
Amy
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I love this book. Alys has a way with plants and words. In her urban backyard she Intermingles flowers, veg, chickens, art and what-have-you. She throws away rules and convention yet offers sound advice and creative ideas for a memorable and healthy garden.
Orbs n Rings
Dec 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Highly informative book with beautiful photos and illustrations

Add a little Spring to your Winter and join our blog tour for Fowlers The edible Garden. This book has it all, from getting your garden started, to how to save seeds and so much more. I totally fell in love with this book and its beautiful illustrations. The edible Garden gives you a full view of how Fowler enjoys her own garden and how to create your own Garden of Eden. Whether you are a do it yourself who likes to do all your
...more
Sheryl Collier
Aug 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Alys Fowler is the only gardener who I can actually relate to. No perfectly manicured lawns or vegetables in straight rows here. This is real life, fit in with your busy life gardening. Alys takes you into a permaculture style world of inter planting and beautiful vegetable gardening ( including some weeds ). This is the kind of gardening that I have enjoyed-little haphazard and at times messy. Alys writes in a lovely straightforward style with no complicated technical jargon and I feel like she ...more
Heather O'Neill
The title of the book kind of explains what this book is all about :). The author, Alys Fowler goes into design elements of planting an edible garden and talks about soil and compost. Then she describes edible plants and how they should be planted (when, where, and with what). At the end she has a section of harvesting your garden with some recipes, which was nice. I thought that the book had some useful information, but I knew a lot of what she said already. Half of the book was probably ...more
Heather
Apr 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
So often, gardening books get complicated and/or formulaic; this book isn't either of those things. Alys Fowler's approach feels so natural and the way she writes is so friendly, like she's walking you through her garden and giving you information, recipes, and tips as you go. One other thing I loved: this book is so British! This Anglophile loved phrases about how rhubarb is "a doddle to grow" or the best ways to grow courgettes and aubergines (zucchini and eggplants). Highly recommend this ...more
Glen
Dec 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's so pretty. Every page is so pretty.

Esthetics out of the way... I found this book really useful. I'm a small garden gardener. My 'garden' is a balcony in an apartment. I found Fowler's book geared towards getting the most produce out of a very small space, or those with a small plot. The follow through with chutney recipes, etc was also really good. I plan on using some of my meagre crop for that next year.
Shauna
May 24, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gardening, 2010
It's a little haphazardly organised, with great wandering slabs of text... I wouldn't recommended it as a basic "how to" guide for beginners like me but it a great read if you just like reading good writing about gardening in the same way you might like reading Nigella Lawson cook books for the tasty writing. It's also beautifully designed and I've learned a lot of things and actually put them into practice.
Luiza
Jun 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Very beautiful book, with great pictures and drawings. The text is also very detailed, and helps those who want to grow a garden on their backyard. If you're thinking about this, I encourage you to read this book.

As a side note, the book was written for people leaving mainly in England, so it might not be a perfect fit if you leave in a tropical country, for example. Still, it has good explanations with the basics of a garden, so it is still a good option for you to learn.
Sophie James
Oct 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Try not to read this book in one sitting and also beware the urge to suddenly order oraches and calendula seeds at midnight (which I did). The best book I've found on edible gardening, with a light touch, beautiful images, grubby fingernails, damson vodka, lavender biscuits and a very cute dog. But real. Or as real as can be. I've always liked AF in the Guardian and this is more of her. Lovely at bedtime.
Angela
Jun 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Don't understand why they've changed the title of this book. It's called "The Edible Garden". Is it possible not to like Alys? She's such an inspiration, and makes a nice change from seeing gardeners with acres of land to play with. Practical, beautifully presented and with lovely photos. I've read various books on growing veggies, but found very useful info here which I didn't know.
Vaia
Feb 07, 2013 is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
So far - Fowler is super knowledgable but the writing here is mostly in huge prose-style chunks. Not going to be easy to reference when it comes to a certain plant, technique or tip. However that does make you read all of it (rather than only read bits relevant to what you're growing) so you can get a bigger picture.
Meredith
Would have liked more information on how to stagger planting, harvesting, planning for aesthetics and yields. A very chatty style which was nice but could have done with more specific information than this provided.
Bren Haas
Nov 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
I'm a huge fan of Alys Fowler BBC gardening series : I have her episodes on my YouTube playlist and watch them often. The book is a perfect notebook of the educational videos. I love her suggestions on what to grow Ina small space and how she uses every inch of her property to grow food.
Maggie Mattmiller
Jul 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Great book- wealth of information, very readable, and gorgeous illustrations. A great pick for anyone interested in gardening!

*I have to say I won this book in a Goodreads giveaway but that did not affect my opinion or rating*
Sue
Apr 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013, favorites, own
Excellent, all-around edible gardening advice for the newbie or seasoned gardener. Preservation ideas abound. Really lovely book. She had a gardening show one can view on You Tube that is excellent also.
Sara
Jun 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Eh... meh.

Gorgeous book? Yes, definitely. Not really any new information at all, and the author's punctuation was really bizarre sometimes.
Jean
Jun 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book. Took some of her ideas and turned my boring row veggie garden into a beautiful colorful edible garden and reaping the edible benefits as well as the visual!!
Peter
Oct 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

New ideas for productive gardening
Charlene
Jan 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a great book and actually the second time I've read it. I'm going to attempt to grow in my allotment in a roughly 'polyculture' method like the book describes.
Kathy Cox
Jul 17, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great
Bee Baum
Jun 17, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: garden
Georgious laid back gardeneing style. Very inventive!
Ligaya
Mar 29, 2017 rated it it was ok
A beautiful book filled with plentiful photographs, illustrations, and sidebars. I found the organization of the book a bit scattered but there's a lot of inspiration to be had here.
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Alys Fowler is a gardener who loves food. She has an allotment and an urban back garden with two chickens, lots of flowers and plenty of vegetables. She is author of several books and writes a weekly column on gardening for the Guardian.

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