This is a book that reads essentially as a gardening textbook or list of tips. There’s a lot of good stuff in it, but I’m afraid I didn’t get much out of it. First, since I listened on audio, the information was overwhelming. A print copy would’ve been much better – especially an owned copy that I could refer back to many times. Second, the book is very UK-centric. Makes sense, as Monty Don is a UK gardener, but very little in the book could be applied to a south Texas garden. I was hoping for a bit more general gardening wisdom, rather than specific times/plants/weather conditions etc.
Still, that’s not to say this is a bad book, and it’s always a pleasure listening to Monty Don (who narrated this himself). (Fair warning to anyone who is turned off by mouth noises, though – there’s quite a bit of swallowing etc that wasn’t removed by the audio editors.) I loved watching him transform gardens in Big Dreams Small Spaces a few years back, and since the show is no longer available on the streaming platforms I subscribe to, it was nice to (kinda) revisit via audio.
PS – Near the beginning of the book, Don describes a dream he had when he was young, of putting his hands in the soil and his fingers growing deep into the earth like roots, and it was the most enthralling and gorgeous image!