First, I bought the audiobook of Monty Don‘s, Down to Earth, because I thought it would be fun and inspiring to listen to while I’m doing other things like knitting or cleaning up flower beds. It was! But I quickly discovered that I needed a print version of the book, as well, because there was so much excellent information, and so many inspiring ideas, that I will need to refer back to throughout the year. It is full of gardening wisdom and I loved listening to it, then reading it. There is so much for me to learn from this easy and enjoyable book.
One favorite bit from the book was the section about wildlife in the garden:
“An immaculate garden is a hostile place to most wildlife. Beautifully weeded borders, with every fallen leaf and twig gathered and disposed of, hedges kept constantly crisp and grass mown to within a fraction of its life may make a certain sort of gardener glow with pride but will provide little comfort for most of our birds, mammals and insects.”
I must admit that I do NOT have an immaculate garden! I call the east side of our property “the wilderness area” because the hedge is overgrown and there is little order to it at all. But, as a consequence, we get many little birds that visit us, a family of scrub jays nest there each spring, too many squirrels that think they own the place, and an occasional owl or hawk. The view out our kitchen window is a bit unruly, but always entertaining. Throughout our quarantine, watching the wildlife outside has been a huge comfort and entertainment for us.
So, for any gardeners out there, this book by Monty Don is highly informative and entertaining. If it’s a little too early to start your planting yet, take a little time and enjoy this book. You’ll come away with great ideas for your garden.