Book Review: The Creative Gardener by Adam Frost

There is something very relatable and accessible about Adam Frost.  He has the perfect combination of being incredibly knowledgeable and having the ability to share that knowledge without being patronising or too complicated.  It is an important trait.  When I was asked if I wanted to review his new book 'The Creative Gardener: inspirational projects and ideas to personalise your space', I did not have to think for long before saying yes.

I have not paid for this book nor been paid to write this review.  My words and opinions are my own.

Regular viewers of Gardeners World will know that Adam is a practical gardener.  He turns his hand to making many things in his own garden and he gives good clear demonstrations and instructions how we can do likewise.  This book takes us through 25 projects with Adam and it is more than 'here is how you make a box'.  Adam talks us through the design process behind the projects so you know how he would use them, where he would position them.  If they are a planting container he talks through ideas of what you could plant in them.  Not all the projects involve making something.  Some projects are about how to plant up a bought/repurposed container.  The Woodland Container that Adam creates is just a delight.

Some are more practical and involve tools.  Adam tells and shows you which tools you will need.  I now know the difference between a stone and a wood chisel.  There are projects to make a wood store, to make paths and a brick circle, and how to create steps and raised beds, how to restore furniture and create a water feature.  There are also wildlife habitat projects to make.  I loved the toad house in particular.
The Toad House, p112/113 photo by Jason Ingram

Adam says that these projects are not difficult and that he thinks his own 14 year old son could make them.  I confess that I might not have the practical skills of his son so I am not convinced I could make all of them, but most of them I would willingly give a good go at.  I would love to make this Toad House but I think my chiseling skills might need a bit of work before I can attempt this and still retain all my fingers....

Most importantly of all though, is that Adam reminds us that it is not just the final object that matters, there is something really important for our wellbeing in the creating and crafting of projects.  I can very much identify with this as there is something in the making process that keeps me in the moment and improves my mindfulness.

I really enjoyed this book, I think it has ideas that will suit most spaces and abilities.  

The Creative Gardeners is an RHS book published by DK book

Take care and be kind.

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