Book Review – Good Soil
There’s only so much you can say about soil, right?! Wrong! ‘Good Soil‘ is PACKED with delightful surprises, from a little science on soil biology through to guides on how to best use all that chicken manure (a topic close to my heart). And then there are the stunning photos and drawings included. This might be about soil, but it’s about beautiful soil.
It’s all too easy to forget about your vegetable or ornamental garden earth. There’s those obvious first steps; shoving in some ericaceous soil for those acid-loving plants, topping a bed with shop-bought compost each spring or piling in the manure. Some of my earliest allotment memories are heading down to the local stables to go mining for black, steaming gold to enrich the beds. But once a bit of titivation has taken place, we get on with growing, often forgetting about the complex nature of soil.
And complex, it is. Good Soil addresses this in a interesting and beautifully written way. Tina Råman’s writing draws you in; this isn’t a simple reference book. There are stories to unravel, fun facts to discover and vast, vast amounts of delectable information to enjoy. Manure might seem a strange and slightly unsavoury topic for a book but it’s often a crucial component for any successful growing season, regardless of whether you’ve got flowers or vegetables. Towards the end of the book, there’s also a very useful section on various plant types (bulbs, trees, and vegetables, for example) and the best soil practices for each group.
This book really surprised me. I liked the idea and topic of the book; a soil bible to live by. But I wasn’t expecting the gorgeous images and the alluring writing to draw me in quite as it did.
I highly recommend Good Soil. Honestly, if you buy it as a gift, buy two; you won’t want to part with your own copy!