Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.


or
Sign in to turn on 1-Click ordering.
or
Amazon Prime Free Trial required. Sign up when you check out. Learn More
More Buying Choices
Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I'd like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

The Bad Tempered Gardener [Hardcover]

Anne Wareham , Charles Hawes

List Price: CDN$ 27.95
Price: CDN$ 17.61 & FREE Shipping on orders over CDN$ 25. Details
You Save: CDN$ 10.34 (37%)
o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o o
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.ca. Gift-wrap available.
Want it delivered Monday, August 25? Choose One-Day Shipping at checkout.

Book Description

May 1 2011
Seeing gardening as a serious and even outrageous art form has placed Anne Wareham well outside of what usually passes for discussion of gardens. Impatient with received ideas, eager to provoke, The Bad-Tempered Gardener is the story of her development as a thinking gardener and the creation with her husband, Charles Hawes, of their acclaimed garden in the Welsh borders, the Veddw.

From the strange (plant obsessives, a bizarre debut as a television presenter) to the everyday (deadheading, sharing a garden), with frequent paeans to favourite plants and thoughtful pieces on show gardens and status, this is an intelligent, pugnacious and engaging book. It also unflinchingly conveys the challenges, the hard work, triumphs and failures behind the creation and development of a substantial contemporary garden.

Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought


Product Details


Product Description

Review

'At once entertaining, opinionated and deliciously annoying.' -- James Alexander Sinclair 'Challenging rather than bad-tempered, The Bad Tempered Gardener is certainly strongly voiced, argumentative and full of a sharp edged wisdom that those of us who want to make better, more beautiful gardens need to be attending to.' -- Sara Maitland 'When, at Veddw in Monmouthshire, Wareham replants the lines of vanished hedgerows with box and fills the enclosed spaces with grasses and hardy perennials, she is linking the land-use of the past with the aesthetic of the lordly parterre. By giving expression to contemporary sensibility about conservation, she invites intellectual engagement.' -- Germaine Greer Anne Wareham gardens at Veddw House in Monmouthshire with her husband Charles Hawes. Their two-acre garden is quirky and so is she, but this book is full of original thought and it's honest. Two acres between two is tough going! The Lucky Jim anti-version of gardening books. Oxford Times If you love gardening but hate the pretensions surrounding it, this is the book for you. Yorkshire Evening Post We're used to friendly faces and kind words in the gardening world, whether it's on TV or in print. People who give gentle encouragement, enthuse about reliable plants and impart wise advice. Then there's Anne Wareham. Gardener, author and sometime TV presenter, her latest book might well get her known as the Simon Cowell of the green-fingered scene. Scotsman Outspoken, candid and occasionally controversial, Anne Wareham is a unique voice in the gardening world. Topiarius A different sort of gardening book. Western Mail Series An intelligent, pugnacious and engaging book. Monmouthsire County Life This is also a compelling book - the story of the creation of the garden at the Veddw, interlaced with the author's somewhat bumpy education as a gardener. I read it from cover tocover in just a few sittings, agreeing with some parts, violently disagreeing with other parts but transfixed by the whole idea that someone who professes to hate gardening should spend their life creating a beautiful garden like the Veddw. Professional Gardener Be prepared to be both entertained and annoyed when you read Anne's book as she describes her 'outside housework' and takes a swipe at 'gushing garden stories'. If her penned thoughts and criticisms make you think a little more reflectively about gardens - and gardeners - then her book will have acheived its aim. Reckless Gardener Less bad tempered than a well considered plea to consider gardens more honestly and critically. Garden Design Journal This book represents a gardener who is not so much bad-tempered as frustrated, at pains to challenge accepted garden wisdom in all its forms. House & Garden Definitely thought-provoking. Irish Garden This is certainly the first gardening book I've read in whch the author heartily recommends separate beds - for married couples, not vegetables. Daily Mail A kind of grumpy, argumentative antidote to all other gardening books. Evening Standard This book is refreshing for being resolutely contrarian. The author's searing honesty will earn instant respect from many readers - we have all felt like the chapter headed 'I hate gardening', but few of us admit it. The Garden

About the Author

Anne Wareham has been living and gardening in the Welsh borders with her husband Charles Hawes for over thirty years. She has written occasional pieces for the Financial Times on gardens since 1998 and accompanying articles to Charles Hawes' photographs in magazines such as The English Garden and Gardens Illustrated. She contributed a chapter to the Frances Lincoln book Vista and is a founder member of thinkingardens, set up with the support of the RHS to encourage and develop a broader, more enquiring attitude to gardens. Charles Hawes' photographs of gardens regularly appear in the best gardening magazines. He has won several prizes in the annual RHS open photography competition, and was an exhibiting finalist in the 2008 International Garden Photographer of the Year Competition. He supplied all the photographs in Stephen Anderton's recent book Discovering Welsh Gardens, shortlisted for a 2009 Garden Media Guild award.

Sell a Digital Version of This Book in the Kindle Store

If you are a publisher or author and hold the digital rights to a book, you can sell a digital version of it in our Kindle Store. Learn more

Customer Reviews

There are no customer reviews yet on Amazon.ca
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A garden book that almost reads itself. Hard to put down. June 8 2011
By James R. Golden - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Anne Wareham's new book, The Bad Tempered Gardener, is irreverent, honest, funny, gossipy, and personally revealing. It's one of those books that practically reads itself. I didn't want to put it down.

Anne isn't well known in the US, but in her home UK she has a reputation for stirring up quite a storm of controversy. She questions the status quo, the veneer of complacency that permeates the gardening world, the unspoken rule that one can say only polite things about gardens, never be critical or even honestly analytical. She annoys people--and many are important people in the British gardening firmament. Anne does have the manner of the elephant in the china shop, which she readily admits.

She also sees the gardening media as being complicit in all this. Not to say they are evil; they need to sell books, magazines, TV shows, and of course everyone wants to see pretty garden pictures; almost no one wants serious discussion or critical analysis; this is a sign of our times. Anne is one of the few, apparently, who is bothered greatly that gardening is relegated to an irrelevant place in our culture. She asks why that is. She apparently can't stop herself from wildly gesticulating and pointing lewdly when she sees the Emperor walking naked in the street.

Anne Wareham takes "The Garden" seriously. She wants the garden to return to the important position it held in past times and cultures. I think she's on to something: the diminished importance of the garden as an artistic and moral work in our culture--now viewed as a hobby, like making model airplanes, or at the opposite extreme, as an expensive trophy of the wealthy--is a symptom of something out of kilter at a much deeper level. (I should admit my bias here; I'm on her side of this issue.)

A miscellany in the good sense, with a bit of biography, soul searching, garden history, media criticism, funny stories ("I hate gardening"), all presented as a series of generally chronological essays, varying widely in subject and tone, it's just the kind of book you can dip into at any time of day or night; great for commuters. A collection of thematically related essays, generally covering the making of her garden, The Veddw, on the border of Wales, The Bad Tempered Gardener, to my mind belongs with a group of fine, lesser known works, some classics. At the moment only a handful immediately come to mind, and they are all personal and idiosyncratic in some way--Eleanor Perenyi's Green Thoughts: A Writer in the Garden, though you would probably have a hard time imagining two more different sensibilities, Mirabel Osler's A Gentle Plea for Chaos, likewise a vastly different style and voice from Anne's, G. F. Dutton's Some Branch Against the Sky. They may disappear from sight for long periods, then be found again, bob to the surface on some metaphorical seashore, perhaps to be republished, or used copies will be ordered from Amazon or Ebay. They're like messages in bottles, simply there in the mass of garden media "noise," carrying messages that may be found by like minds in the future, perhaps to spark new ideas at a more propitious time.

As I was looking through the latest issue of Gardens Illustrated this week, I was wowed by the photos, but the text hardly registered as anything more than a neutral ground against which to display the photos. Even when I read an article, I was left thinking, `What's the point of this?' Perhaps someone designed, or had someone else design, a beautiful garden, but to what end? A few pleasant places to sit? Pretty vistas and plant pictures? Dramatic allees of hornbeams or pristine topiary? A spectacular display of garden talent? Why is there no consistent concern with meaning, with aspiration for making something more than pretty gardens?

There's no slickness in The Bad Tempered Gardener, no "garden porn," though Charles Hawes' small garden photos give us helpful windows into The Veddw. I think of the glossy garden magazines, innumerable books displaying the gardens of the wealthy or famous--all surface glitter, stimulating unrealistic aspiration among the less well-to-do, giving The Garden a romantic glow but no meaning beyond the appreciation of a well designed stage set.

We need more books full of words about gardens. This one is funny, annoying, stimulating, and immensely sad. Please read it with an open mind and see if you don't find much to think on.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A well-written garden book that raises important questions Jan. 27 2013
By Beth in Iowa - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
"The Bad Tempered Gardener," by Anne Wareham is a garden book of several different functions. First it is the typical story of how Wareham and her husband made their garden in Southeast Wales (named Veddw, pronounced "Vedda," as far as I could figure out) and how she learned about gardening during the process. She relates many amusing and discouraging anecdotes about what worked and what failed utterly over the years.

She also offers advice about specific plants, but living in a damp but mild British climate, much of her advice will not be applicable to North American gardeners. (For instance, tulips rot in the ground there, unlike during the hot, dry summers of the Midwest.)

However, her garden design advice is excellent. One of her curmudgeonly opinions concerns the difference between a collection of miscellaneous plants and a garden that has been designed to look a certain way on purpose. She rails against the plant collectors, and it's true that the gardens of "plantsmen," who are invariably held in high esteem, are usually only interesting to other collectors of those specific plants. Her main advice: fewer kinds of plants in larger quantities - good advice, although hard to follow if you love to go plant shopping.

She also discusses garden philosophy, asking the bigger questions: What do gardens mean? Why do we garden? Are our gardens for ourselves or for others? In this vein, she points out that our desire to make gardens is tied up with issues of death and dying, contemplating what happens to our gardens when we leave them or when we ourselves die. All thoughtful gardeners have pondered these questions and she is right to bring them up, despite the determined cheeriness of those in the garden industry.

I found interesting her discussion, from the point of view of someone in the garden media as a writer, of the close relationship between garden media and garden industry retailers and manufacturers. The industry pays for advertising, supporting garden magazines and general newspapers, etc. and this leads to articles targeting mostly beginner gardeners who know nothing, because they are the ones who will buy equipment, not experienced gardeners who already have it all.

But the most important idea in her book is her criticism of the garden industry and garden media for "dumbing down" the discussion of gardens and garden design. It is very bad form in the UK (unpublishable really) to criticize any garden that is open to the public. Especially since most gardens in the UK are open to raise money for charities in the National Gardens Scheme. This is an extremely touchy subject, and her garden was recently delisted from the NGS in response to her newspaper article criticizing the NGS for its detrimental effect on the overall quality of British gardens.

She believes, probably rightly, that this reluctance to criticize has held back garden design from becoming a serious art form, like visual art, film and literature are serious arts.

Of course, as a nice Midwesterner, I recoil from the idea of discouraging anyone from gardening by offering hurtful comments about their efforts. When you criticize a person's garden, you are criticizing her home, her personal taste and her competency as a gardener. Snobbish, "expert" judgment of well-meaning amateurs is not what is needed.

Perhaps instead there needs to be a more clear division between serious/professional-level gardens and recreational gardens in the UK. Both could still be open for charities and plant sales and cream teas (all good things), but the needed criticism could be reserved for National Trust gardens and those of professional designers or others who designate themselves experts. A middle ground, perhaps?

Altogether a well-written, interesting book. I read it from cover to cover, something that I feel isn't always necessary with garden books, of which I own close to a thousand. Although one thing that would have increased the pleasure of reading the book would have been larger photos of Veddw - the excellent photos by Wareham's husband, a professional garden photographer, were just too tiny to be glorious.

I highly recommend this book for gardeners, garden designers and writers, and people interested in British gardens.
5.0 out of 5 stars A REAL gardener Jan. 24 2014
By Jack Holloway - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Thought provoking, often amusing and possibly the best ever writing on the ambivalent relationship gardeners often have with their garden and their love of gardens and gardening. The Veddw becomes a 'must see' for every true gardener after reading this!

Look for similar items by category


Feedback