Vegetable Gardening the Colonial Williamsburg Way: 18th-Century Methods for Today's Organic Gardeners

Vegetable Gardening the Colonial Williamsburg Way: 18th-Century Methods for Today's Organic Gardeners

by Wesley Greene
     
 

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Vegetable Gardening the Colonial Williamsburg Way

From the nation's foremost historical preservation site comes a guide to traditional--and still relevant--methods and advice for planting and tending a productive vegetable garden

In a colonial-style garden, the broccoli is purple and "turkey" cucumbers grow to three feet long; oiled paper predates plastic for

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Overview

Vegetable Gardening the Colonial Williamsburg Way

From the nation's foremost historical preservation site comes a guide to traditional--and still relevant--methods and advice for planting and tending a productive vegetable garden

In a colonial-style garden, the broccoli is purple and "turkey" cucumbers grow to three feet long; oiled paper predates plastic for sheltering spring plants; and fermenting manure warms the seedlings. Finding inspiration and value in 18th-century plants, tools, and techniques, the gardeners at Colonial Williamsburg have discovered that these traditional vegetable-growing methods are perfectly at home in today's modern organic gardens. After all, in the 18th century, organic gardening was the only type of gardening and local produce the only produce available.

Author Wesley Greene founded the Colonial Garden in Colonial Williamsburg's Historic Area in 1996. He and his colleagues have painstakingly researched the ways the colonists planted and tended their vegetable and herb beds, most of which are more relevant than ever. Along with historical commentary and complete growing instructions for 50 delicious vegetables, including colonial varieties still available today, gardeners and folklorists will find weather-watching guidelines, planting techniques, and seedsaving advice for legumes, brassicas, alliums, root crops, nightshades, melons, squash, greens, and other curious and tender produce.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Lovers of historical gardens will... appreciate VEGETABLE GARDENING THE COLONIAL WILLIAMSBURG WAY: 18th-Century Methods for Today’s Organic Gardeners, by the estimable Wesley Greene...[and] today’s organic gardeners will discover much to admire in Barbara Temple Lombardi’s photographs."

Library Journal
Greene, who has spent 30 years researching historic plants, shares vegetable-gardening techniques used in colonial times that are still applicable today. Arranged in broad categories, such as salad greens or root crops, the individual entries cover the history of the vegetable, how it arrived in the New World, cultural information, and vegetables varieties grown in colonial Virginia, along with similar heirloom varieties currently available. Greene quotes gardeners of the time and adds his own thoughts for each vegetable. He also provides tips for gardeners living in other areas of the United States. Each entry ends with a summary of cultural and seed-saving information. Greene also addresses gardening with hotbeds and using growing sticks to support vegetables like peas. Beautiful color photographs illustrate the vegetables and gardening techniques. VERDICT A lovely book for vegetable gardeners with some experience who are interested in the history of vegetables and vegetable gardening in colonial times. Beginning general vegetable gardeners should start with a guide such as Edward C. Smith's The Vegetable Gardener's Bible.—Sue O'Brien, Downers Grove P.L., IL

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781609611620
Publisher:
Rodale Press, Inc.
Publication date:
02/14/2012
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
536,739
Product dimensions:
8.10(w) x 10.10(h) x 1.00(d)

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