Looking at my bookshelves it’s easy to see I enjoy knowledge of growing food and all things allotment related. I have collected quite a number of allotment and kitchen garden books over the years, some were received as gifts or purchased by myself but most were kindly sent to me to review. Aside from absorbing gardening knowledge, I take inspiration from the photos these books hold within.
If I had to chose only one book to keep from all the books I proudly own (which are all fantastic books by the way) it would be Allotment Month by Month by Alan Buckingham. This book was invaluable to me when I took on my first allotment many years ago, I’d grown veg in my garden previously but didn’t have a clue where to start on my weedy and unforgiving allotment. It’s the book I still chose to refer to, I highly recommend it for the experienced grower and complete allotment beginner.
To start you off on your allotment journey, Allotment Month by Month covers topics such as Assess your plot, Must-have tools, Compost, manures and fertilizers and Crop rotation practises. The book then moves on to sowing, planting and harvesting month by month with timely jobs to be doing on the plot and things to look out for. There are guides set out within the growing calendar that are very useful, such as Pruning apple and pear trees, Make your own compost bin and Store crops for the winter.
As if that wasn’t enough Allotment Month by Month also provides a really useful and detailed crop planner, cultivation details crop by crop (including fruit) plus hints and tips for successful yearly harvests. I refer to the troubleshooting section quite frequently which covers disease and pests.
Do look out for this book, it is pricey new compared to some but you will get a lot of use from it, you might be lucky to find it cheaper second-hand.
If you’ve been good this year you could try asking Santa.