Sunday, October 4, 2015

Books: Down the Garden Path

Down the Garden Path
Author: Beverley Nichols
296 pages
Publisher: Timber Press, Incorporated (December 1, 2004)
ISBN-10: 0881927104
ISBN-13: 978-0881927108
From Amazon
Down the Garden Path has stood the test of time as one of the world's best-loved and most-quoted gardening books. Ostensibly an account of the creation of a garden in Huntingdonshire in the 1930s, it is really about the underlying emotions and obsessions for which gardening is just a cover story. The secret of this book's success---and its timelessness---is that it does not seek to impress the reader with a wealth of expert knowledge or advice. Beverley Nichols proudly declares his status as a newcomer to gardening: "The best gardening books should be written by those who still have to search their brains for the honeysuckle's languid Latin name..." As unforgettable as the plants in the garden is the cast of visitors and neighbors who invariably turn up at inopportune moments. For every angelic Miss Hazlitt there is an insufferable Miss Wilkins waiting in the wings. For every thought-provoking Professor, there is an intrusive Miss M, whose chief offense may be that she is a 'damnably efficient' gardener. From a disaster building a rock garden, to further adventures with greenhouses, woodland gardens, not to mention cats and treacle, Nichols has left us a true gardening classic.

1 comment:

Stepheny Houghtlin said...

We have Timber Press to thank for the reprint of the Nichols' books. I have all of them. They are a delight. One good book always leads to another, a notion I have that is proved true once you start reading these garden classic treasures. Might I suggest you start with Merry Hall in order to get to know Nichols and his cast of characters. Roy Dicks in Raleigh is a Nichols expert. Contact him if you get hooked. I hope you will.