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About this product
- DescriptionIt is Winter 1992. After a series of failed relationships, family bereavements and career setbacks, Michael Rand has hit rock bottom. One morning, a letter arrives from the Council, asking if he would like a plot on the Fitzroy Park allotments, next to Hampstead Heath in London. From that day on, his life would change forever. This is the story of one man's obsession with a sixteen by eight yard patch of ground on the edge of a city - a source of delicious fresh produce and much more besides. In a series of entertaining tales, Michael Rand describes how he learned to garden and tried to find answers to the questions faced by all vegetable growers. How do you make your soil more fertile? What are the best crops to sow? Can you ever be completely organic? In the process, he reveals the often extreme lengths to which he and his fellow plotholders will go to improve their harvest, from carrying bursting bags of horse manure on the Northern Line to using Vicks VapoRub as a slug deterrent. He also describes the many pleasures of growing your own, whether it's eating the freshest sweetcorn imaginable, cooked on the plots within minutes of harvest; growing luscious tomatoes, such as Costoluto Fiorenti, which are unheard of in the shops; or raising a miniature field of wheat. Michael's plot yields more than fresh produce, as it leads him to question the nature of the food industry, our use of scarce resources, and our ambivalent relationship with the natural world. This is a very different kind of gardening book. An engaging narrative with a wonderful cast of characters, it explores the subject from a variety of perspectives - personal and political; practical and philosophical. Close to the Veg will appeal to vegetable gardeners in general, allotment growers in particular, and anyone who enjoys a good tale.
- Author BiographyMichael Rand was born in Totternhoe, South Bedfordshire, and spent most of his early years in historic Crowthorne, East Berkshire. In 1982, he moved to North London, and has lived there ever since, at various addresses, and currently behind Phelps's Pianos in Kentish Town. Michael has worked, inter alia, as a builder, decorator, postman, clerk, designer and proofreader. He began allotment gardening in 1993, and this is his first book on that (or any other) subject.
- Author(s)Michael Rand
- PublisherMarlin Press
- Date of Publication25/10/2005
- SubjectBiography: General
- Place of PublicationStansted
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintMarlin Press
- Content Note20 b/w line drawings
- Width130 mm
- Height198 mm
- Format DetailsWith dust jacket
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