Picks and Pans Review: Talking With...
>Tom Christopher and Marty Asher
HOW DOES YOUR GARDEN GROW?
A LOT OF GARDENING BOOKS TALK about what plants need; we talk about what people need," says Marty Asher, the "horticulturally challenged" editor-in-chief of Vintage books and coauthor of The 20-Minute Gardener (Random House, $19.95). "We feel your garden should adopt itself to your lifestyle and not vice versa." Asher enlisted his friend Tom Christopher to collaborate on a guide to low-maintenance gardening. "I capitulated quickly to the idea of making things easier," says Christopher, a horticulturist and writer. "The kind of gardening practiced traditionally in the U.S. presumes you have an inherited income and a staff. I have neither, and I was finding that as I had more responsibilities, I was able to garden less and less."
Chapters include "The 20-Minute Toolshed" and "Weeding One Hour a Year." Plus Tom and Marty's 10 Commandments for the 20-minute gardener:
•You shall not spray any plant more than once a season. If it requires more, it should be in a nursing home, not your garden.
•Nursery catalogs have no relevance to gardening unless used as mulch. The magnificent plants pictured on their pages have never appeared on this planet.
•Bugs are the gardener's equivalent of Vietnam—they cannot be defeated by sheer firepower. But you can outsmart them.
•When in doubt, do nothing.
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