Build a Better Vegetable Garden, subtitled ’30 DIY Projects to Improve Your Harvest’ is one of those books you’ll find a really useful addition to your shelf. It’s 30 clever DIY projects for the home grower and gardener, each well explained by gardener Joyce Russell with beautiful illustrative photographs by Ben Russell.
The projects range from simple woodwork projects for tunnels and frames to gadgets that deter slugs and carrot root fly, the results are well-designed as well as decorative. Each build includes step-by-step instructions as well as a list of materials and the tools you’ll need and a relative skills rating. There are expert growing tips and specific crop advice to help you make the most of your harvest.
It will appeal to both the experienced DIY’er and those less skilled. Each project in the book has a guide to difficulty and time the project is likely to take so you can decide if it’s within your capabilities before you start. Even if you’re not very DIY savvy, the clear step by step instructions will get you through.
If you’re an experienced DIY person, you’ll find the ideas a great basis to base projects of your own on and to spark new ideas you may not have thought of. It’s always useful to see how someone else has tackled a problem.
It’s received some great, well-deserved reviews which I think is summed up well by the Irish News: ‘One of the best practical aids of the year’
The book opens with helpful chapters on tools, materials and general construction tips and help before diving into the individual projects. Very useful for the novice builder!
Joyce Russell is obviously a good gardener as well as being good at DIY. Each project is accompanied by growing guides and help to get the most from them. I found the discussion on making the most of a 2 metre square raised bed particularly interesting
This isn’t another coffee table book, although it does have great photographs. It’s a practical, useful book you won’t regret buying.