Andi Clevely has
written some good gardening books in his time and they reflect
his long term interest in gardening.
The Allotment Book was first published in 2006 and has
received good reviews from many reviewers. So when we started to
review this book we were confident that it would live up to
past high standards.
Unfortunately we were disappointed with some aspects of the
book. Read on for details of why.
Imagine yourself in W H Smith, Waterstone or similar
and you are looking for a present for a friend who has recently
started an allotment or who plans to do so. Maybe you are looking for
a book on allotments for yourself. You see The Allotment Book and
flip through the pages. It looks impressive, very impressive. In
fact, thirty seven pages out of the total 224 pages are 100% covered
in pictures. That's over 16% of the pages, totally devoted to
Of the remaining 187 pages we roughly estimate that
25% is covered in smaller pictures. That leaves about 140 pages with
information on them. The index occupies five of those pages, the
acknowledgements page occupies one more page, four of those pages are occupied by
recipes ........ Hmm! That lead to us examining the remaining pages
of information in a little more detail.
We are not going to dissect each and every page in
detail, rather we cite a couple of examples which typify the content of
this book. I recently planted a small asparagus bed and was
therefore drawn to this section of the book at first.
There's some good information in the book on
asparagus, true. The most common way to start an asparagus is to buy one or two year old crowns rather than sow seed which is not nearly
so reliable. When is the best time to plant (not sow the
seed) asparagus crowns? You won't find it in The Allotment Book. How
are asparagus crowns planted, not the normal way for sure? But you
won't find this information in The allotment Book. Asparagus are
normally grown from seed in a nursery bed and then transplanted the
next spring. No information in The Allotment Book about that.
We examined further and found that the information
given for many fruit, vegetables and herbs was lacking in important detail.
For example, is it really possible to cover growing blackcurrants, white
currants, blueberries and gooseberries under one heading and in less
than half a page? The Allotment Book does just this.
This book is a gold mine of professional garden photography and it
may well inspire you to start an allotment. But it lacks important
information about practical allotment subjects. Look elsewhere if
you want comprehensive information for your allotment.
Published By: Collins
First Published: 2006
Author: Andi Clevely
Title: The Allotment Book
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