Sunday 5 June 2011

Our Allotment Bible!

Although we have our own copy now, we originally borrowed this book off my mum.
"Your Kitchen Garden" by George Seddon and Helena Radecka.
The most handy bit is right in the middle which has a two page spread of what to plant and when. The first few pages go into a bit of history of how cultivation of food has progressed since earliest times, then some nice pictures and sections on crop rotation, soil, greenhouses, tools and sowing seeds.
Each type of vegetable and fruit is then dealt with, and various varieties thereof, with a bit of history thrown in as well. Storage and diseases are covered really thoroughly.

The second half of the book is a cookery book with lots of ways to use and cook your crops. Some more ideas on how to use up your courgettes! There is, for me, one of the most handy sections that is of preserving vegetables and fruit, and pickling etc.

There is a little piece which I think does date the book at bit and show how attitudes have changed since the 70's when the book way written! In the history section it talks about an allotment survey - age of allotment owners, sex, occupation etc - "They found that only 3.2% of allotment holders were women and 1.8% housewives - and here is the interesting bit - it was assumed that the women were at home looking after the flowers there" (!!!).
On the plot where our allotment is there are quite a few couples, and everyone gets involved - yes there are still a few "traditional" shed types but I think it's very much a shared activity nowadays for a lot of people.

Anyway, the book is still available, link is below

In the UK

In the US

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