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The Dry Garden
  • ISBN: 9781474610964
  • Pages: 288
  • Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Foreword: Monty Don

The Dry Garden

Beth Chatto

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In Beth Chatto’s classic book, she uses plants that need very little attention and have naturally adapted to flourish in dry conditions to provide a year-round display of beautiful foliage and flowers.

Drawing from her own experience, she provides valuable guidance on types of soil and on basic principles of design, and includes a detailed list of plants, with notes and advice on their characteristics.

Reviewed by Isabel Lloyd in Slightly Foxed Issue 65.

A Hardy Perennial


The Dry Garden, Chatto’s first book, was published in 1978, two years after that earlier record-breaking summer. It offered gardeners who’d come to hate the sight of a hose 180-odd pages of drought-beating design, planting and maintenance advice. Crucially, this was based on experience hard-won after what was then already nearly forty years of nurturing plants in East Anglia, England’s driest cor-ner. Within two years the book had been reprinted, and it went on appearing in regular reissues and revisions until the late 1990s, when other, showier garden writers moved centre-stage. Then in 2018 Weidenfeld & Nicolson published the first new edition in twenty years – just as the weather, finally, broke. A case, you might say, of the right book at the right time . . .

Extract from Slightly Foxed Issue 65, Spring 2020

A Hardy Perennial

The summer of 2018 was a glory – as long as you weren’t a gardener. For those of us who fret about plants, it was a season as much to be endured as enjoyed. After a cold, late spring, the weather...

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