Book – Fruit and Vegetable Gardens – The National Trust Guide to the Productive Garden


Attached to the grand English House of the National Trust, often centuries old, were once extensive kitchen gardens and orchards – some of which have disappeared completely, and others have been transformed into pleasure gardens, rose gardens, even car parks. Where they have been preserved, the Trust’s expert gardeners keep up the excellent tradition that combines the practical with the pleasant – and like most private gardeners, the Trust has had to evolve labour-saving and cost-effective methods of upkeep. Francesca Greenoak’s study of this reviving practice includes chapters on orchards, kitchen gardens, wall fruit and herbs, and useful information relevant to anyone who values good-quality produce from a good-looking garden. As the popularity of the potager testifies, techniques for growing fruit and vegetables – and flowers for cutting – in as attractive a way as possible are vital to the small space gardener with perhaps a single plot that must serve every purpose. Here the gardeners’ tips all translate perfectly to the domestic plot. This practical guidebook shows how to create an atmosphere of distinction that lifts the functional kitchen garden out of the realms of the ordinary in terms of both visual layout and productive yield. Full colour photographs of the wide variety of potagers, kitchen gardens and conservatories in the care of The Trust are complemented by an abundance of line drawings illustrating methods of growing, from attractive hanging herb baskets and camomile seats to renovating old fruit trees.


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