No Dig Organic Home and Garden

No dig organic gardening saves time and work. The authors draw on decades of experience to explain the skills you need for growing great vegetables in less time. They explain and illustrate delicious ways to eat them, and other things you can do with garden plants. Both Charles and Stephanie wrote the gardening chapters, combining their experiences of market gardening, working on private estates and growing in smaller gardens and allotments.

A treasure of information, it is a complete guide to fertility and healthiness, from soil to body, made clear through real life experience.

Lorenzo Costa, Permaculture magazine

An annual dressing of compost helps accelerate the improvement in soil structure and leads to higher fertility and less weeds. It is a great way of growing abundant food year round even in smaller spaces.

Ecologically beneficial, no dig methods help to keep carbon in the soil and works sustainably with wildlife and nature . The organic mulch on the surface suppresses weeds, helps to conserve moisture and feeds and protects the soil flora and fauna, including mycorrhizae. Many gardening organisations including the RHS and The National Trust are trialling and adopting no dig methods based on Charles’ work.

One of the Top 10 Gardening Books for Christmas, The Telegraph

In the book, no dig experts, Charles Dowding and Stephanie Hafferty, explain how to

  • make compost and enrich soil
  • learn skills you need to sow and grow annual and perennial veg
  • harvest and prepare food year round
  • make natural cosmetics, cleaning products and garden preparations

These approaches work as well in small spaces as in large gardens. The authors’ combined experience gives you ways of growing, preparing and storing the plants you grow for many uses, including delicious vegetable feasts and many recipes and ideas for increasing self reliance, saving money, living sustainably and enjoying the pleasure of growing your own food, year round.

Charles’ advice is distilled from 35 years of growing vegetables intensively and efficiently; he is the acknowledged no dig guru and salad expert both in the UK and internationally.

Stephanie, a kitchen gardener, grows in her small, productive home garden and allotment, and creates no dig gardens for restaurants and private estates. She creates delicious seasonal recipes made from the vegetables anyone can grow. She also explains how to use common plants you can grow and forage for to make handmade preparations for the home and garden.

No dig is just the starting point of this book and it goes on to cover every possible aspect of growing, cooking and preserving, combining all of Dowding and Hafferty’s knowledge, ideas and recipes. There are tables for the best sowing times, required soil temperatures and spacings, plus protection, pests and diseases are covered in detail.

Then there are recipes for using your produce to create DIY potions for the garden – sprays, fertilisers and so on – and for the home – soaps, cleaning solutions and laundry powder – as well as plenty of mouth-watering, vegetable-based recipes. 

All of these extras combine to make this more of a manual for self sufficiency and an alternative lifestyle than a straight gardening book, and it is all the more useful and thought provoking for it. It is a brilliant place for a beginner to start and will also give old timers pause to consider doing things in this alternative way. (Lia Leendertz)

Book of the Month in Gardens Illustrated August 2017

No Dig Organic Home and Garden, co written with Charles Dowding, won the Peter Seabrook Practical Book of the Year Award at the 2017 Garden Media Guild Awards.

Charles and I with the award

The judges were bowled over by the sheer volume of useful information in this comprehensive book. Written with obvious passion by people who practice what they preach, it’s full of immensely logical and clear explanations that don’t baffle with technical terms. The useful key tables and clear, informative photos all add to this hugely practical book that is perfect for anyone interested in growing their own veg and making the most of their harvests without needing to dig.

Judges comments at the GMG Awards ceremony 23.11.2017, London
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