When it comes to reading, I have found I do not have the patience as well more often not the time to enjoy. When I do grab a book that is not inspiration and DIY topics, I go for reads in the style such as People with Dirty hands. Books about gardening which are not so much the science & technical aspect. More of the persons view & interest. Stories about the garden and it's human. Their life with these plants. One such book I recently picked up at the library titled "Living in the wild garden" by Roger Banks is very much one of those entertaining yet sharing of knowledge books I adore.
If I am not captivated within the first few pages, I put it down and never go back. The rare time I do have for a book, better be a darn good one to spend my time on. I found myself drawn into Mr.Banks descriptions and stories. His words allowing the reader to envision the gardens or country side he lovingly writes of. This book is not about the vegetable garden or even flowers. It is about the wild plants around us so many cast aside and or see as a nuisance to their prized bulbs and dahlias. From the eating of stinging nettles to the harvesting of mushrooms from the speedway in England. He brings you along as he recalls points in time of his experience with each wild edible.
He does reference Culpepper on tidbit medicinal information, but he shares the edible side (with some informal recipes here and there). The benefits of their presence in your garden and how to see them not as something to banish but embrace. Intermingle among the Roses and tomatoes. Showing they have their rightful place amongst your heirlooms and pleasures.
Mr.Banks passed away in 2008. The article I did find on him was an obituary of sort. It turns out, he was a bit of a character. Different from those around him and eccentric in almost a homesteading connection. I found myself laughing at pieces shared and smiling to think how grand it would have been to meet him. The moments shared in his book mixed with what I read in the mentioned article gives him the down to earth appeal I adore in people. If you are looking for one of those last but quick good books during the seed starting season, I would recommend giving this a chance.
Sure there are plants we may not have here in states but the stories he shares mixed in with the ones mentioned make it worth the time. Such as their cousin Mary by divorce who came to visit over the Easter Holiday and soon had them on to the stinging nettles.
"She's a cousin of my wife so distant that we once totally confused ourselves trying to work out the relationship, perhaps that's why she's a favorite. When she said 'We must all eat nettles; we did in war. Find me an old glove', we did and there by crossed unknowingly into another,older,more delightful world of people who are always on the the lookout for something free to eat rather then being tied by the nose to the compulsion of shopping. "
If your not big on this style of read, then the beautiful watercolor paintings of these plants will surely please. You know. In case ya only like books with pictures.