Humans and the world around us have been governed by the waxing and waning of the moon since the planet came into being. Over the centuries different civilisations have embraced the natural cycles which our moon dictates, and so lunar gardening has been around for as long as man has pulled food from the soil; once practised bythe Incas and Native Americans, this tried and trusted method has been largely forgotten.
John Harris, head gardener at Tresillian Estate in Cornwall, has been gardening using the power of the moon for over forty years. The methods he uses can be implemented anywhere, you do not need fancy tools, expensive seeds or substantial acreage, but instead, given time, patience and care, the results can be breathtaking. This is gardening at its most natural and organic, free from pesticides and unnecessary interference. Moon Gardening allows the soil and plants to thrive, giving nature the chance to do what it does best.
The Natural Gardener charts John's story from a rudderless young lad in a Cornish village to being charged with the salvation of the long-neglected gardens at Tresillian. As he shares with his readers exactly how to go about following the sesimple and natural principles, he imparts his abundance of horticultural knowledge from years spent working in harmony with the soil, providing a timely link back to nature and the reassuring regularity of the seasons.
John Harris has been a professional gardener since he started his working life in 1966. He got his first spade when he was ten, his first allotment when he was eleven and his first job on a Cornish estate when he was fifteen. He was taught by'the best in the business', Noel Masters, a head gardener for many of Cornwall's leading gardens. After his apprenticeship, John worked through various horticultural jobs including running commercial garden centres and advising on large public-works projects until twenty-five years ago, when he was offered a challenge he couldn't refuse - the restoration of Tresillian Estate's famous Victorian kitchen garden that had fallen into deep neglect. He agreed, on condition that he could follow the ancient principles of moon gardening. Tresillian is now regarded as one of the UK's finest examples of a working estate kitchen garden.
John shares his wisdom regularly on TV and radio, including appearances on BBC2's Gardening Stories, Gardener's World and BBC Radio Devon's Potting Shed. Numerous articles have been written by him and about him in the national press,including the Daily Telegraph, Vogue, Amateur Gardening and Country Life. He's also the author of Moon Gardening (2002), a work widely regarded as the world authority on the subject. At seventy-four, John still works full time as head of the gardening team at Tresillian, and lives on the estate with his wife Olive.
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