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We Made A Garden (English Edition)
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We Made A Garden (English Edition) [Format Kindle]

Margery Fish
5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)

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Descriptions du produit


Chapter 1
The House

The house was long and low, in the shape of an L, built of honey-coloured Somerset stone. At one time it must have been thatched but, unfortunately, that had been discarded long ago and old red tiles used instead. It stood right in the middle of a little Somerset village, and made the corner where a very minor road turned off from the main street. There was only a narrow strip of garden in front, and not very much behind, but we bought an orchard and outbuildings beyond so that we had about two acres in all. A high stone wall screened us from the village street, and there was a cottage and another orchard on the other side.

You can't make a garden in a hurry, particularly one belonging to an old house. House and garden must look as if they had grown up together and the only way to do this is to live in the house, get the feel of it, and then by degrees the idea of the garden will grow.

We didn't start work outside for nearly a year, and by that time we felt we belonged to the place and it belonged to us and we had some ideas of what we wanted to do with it.

It was on a warm September day when we first saw the house but it was such a wreck that Walter refused to go further than the hall, in spite of the great jutting chimney that buttressed the front. Then the long roof was patched with corrugated iron, the little front garden was a jungle of rusty old laurels and inside an overpowering smell of creosote, newly applied, fought with the dank, grave-like smell of an unlived-in house. "Full of dry rot," said Walter, "not at any price," and turned on his heel.

For three months we tried to find what we wanted. We looked at cottages and villas, gaunt Victorian houses perched uneasily on hilltops, and snug little homes wedged in forgotten valleys. Some were too big and most too small, some hadn't enough garden and others too much. Some were too isolated, others so mixed up with other houses that privacy would have been impossible. We lost our way and had bitter arguments, but we did discover what we didn't want. I couldn't see Walter in a four-roomed cottage with a kitchen tacked on to one end and a bathroom at the other, and I had no intention of landing myself with a barn of a place that would require several servants to keep it clean.

We were still hunting in November when our way took us very near the old house so summarily dismissed in September, so we turned down the lane which said "East Lambrook one mile," just to see what had been happening during those three months.

Quite a lot had happened. The front garden had been cleared of its laurels and the house looked much better. Old tiles had replaced the corrugated iron on the roof, and inside the walls had been washed with cream and the woodwork with glossy paint.

It is one of those typical Somerset houses with a central passage and a door at each end, so very attractive to look at and so very draughty for living. That day we thought only the artistic angle. It was late afternoon and the sun was nearly setting. Both doors were open and through them we caught a glimpse of a tree and a green background against the sunlight.

That day I got Walter further than the flagged passage, and we explored the old bakehouse, with its enormous inglenook and open fireplace, low beamed ceiling and stone floor, and a gay little parlour beyond. On the other side was another large room with stone floor and an even bigger fireplace, and at the far end a lovely room with wonderful panelling. We both knew that our search had ended, we had come home.

I cannot remember just what happened after that but I shall never forget the day when the surveyor came to make his report. It was one of those awful days in early winter of cold, penetrating rain. The house was dark and very cold, and the grave-like dankness was back, in spite of all the new paint and distemper. The surveyor, poor man, had just lost his wife, and was as depressed-

naturally-as the weather. Nor shall I forget Walter's indignation with the report when it did come in. The house, while sound in wind and limb, was described as being of "no character." We didn't think then that it had anything but character, rather sinister perhaps, but definitely character. Since then I have discovered that the house has a kindly disposition; I never come home without feeling I am welcome.

Having got our house we then had to give it up again so that it could be made habitable. For many months it was in the hands of the builders and all we could do was to pay hurried visits to see how things were going, and turn our eyes from the derelict waste that was to be the garden. Sometimes I escaped from the consultations for brief moments and frenziedly pulled up groundsel for as long as I was allowed. Walter never wanted to stay a moment longer than business required and it worried me to go off and leave tracts of outsize groundsel going to seed with prodigal abandon. My few snatched efforts made very little impression on the wilderness, but they made me feel better.

Revue de presse

“Crammed with good advice. . . . I defy any amateur gardener not to find pleasure, encouragement, and profit from We Made a Garden.” —Vita Sackville-West

“Gardening is like everything else in life, you get out of it as much as you put in. No one can make a garden by buying a few packets of seeds or doing an afternoon’s weeding. You must love it, and then your love will be
repaid a thousandfold, as every gardener knows.” —Margery Fish

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 234 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 160 pages
  • Editeur : Batsford (19 décembre 2011)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ASIN: B006OBR8EK
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
  • X-Ray :
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 5.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°187.003 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)
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1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 un classique du jardinage anglais des années 50 28 janvier 2014
Format:Format Kindle|Achat vérifié
We Made a Garden, by Margery Fish, est un classique des années 50, réédité en 70, traduit en 90, dont j'avais vu une critique dans une revue de jardin des années 90, et qui m'avait donné l'idée de tenir mon propre cahier de jardin en 2005. Un petit livre très complet, qui raconte l'achat d'une maison en 1939 et la création du jardin selon des principes opposés entre Margery la narratrice et son Walter d'époux, personnalité de la presse londonienne d'avant-guerre, dont on ne peut pas dire que le caractère soit sympathique, malgré ses connaissances sur le jardin, au détriment des idées de sa femme. On en vient à se réjouir de sa mort prématurée qui l'a laissée libre elle d'agir à sa guise.
Une bonne image de l'attitude de soumission apparente de la femme dans les années d'avant-guerre, sociologiquement intéressante, car elle est restée valable jusqu'à ma génération.
Les chapitres sont bien découpés et les conseils de Margery restent d'actualité à quelques détails près, par exemple, on ne jugerait plus politiquement correct d'utiliser du chlorate de soude ou du souffre pour éliminer les herbes qui ont le mauvais goût d'investir les allées de gravier. Elle reconnaît que finalement elle continuera à prendre la binette jusqu'à la fin de sa vie, car la solution chimique n'est pas idéale, bien qu'elle souligne ne pas avoir d'animaux chez eux.
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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) 3.5 étoiles sur 5  4 commentaires
7 internautes sur 7 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Garden story.... 27 novembre 2002
Par Dianne Foster - Publié sur
WE MADE A GARDEN is a lovely little book by Margery Fish, an "elderly" English lady who with her husband (he who must be obeyed or cleverly deceived it seems) moved to a country manor and converted the mostly lawn areas into gardens of shrubs, flowers, and herbs. First published in the U.K. in the 1950s, the book has been republished as part of the `Modern Library Garden Series' edited by Michael Pollan.
Fish's little book will be considered a gem by experienced gardeners who can picture the plants she names in the mind's eye, identify with her triumphs and failures, and appreciate a useful clues from an obviously seasoned hand. Garden veterans will also identify with the greedy gardener who never has enough space, the stubborn gardener who plants Nepeta despite it's runaway habits, the recalcitrant gardener who hides the verboten brilliant orange Lychnis chalcedonica at the back of the beds, and the disobedient gardener who leaves many openings in the cemented walkway hubby designed to thwart weeds.
The book may appear a bit dense to the new gardener as it describes activities such as composing flower beds, creating walkways, and engineering rock gardens with inferior rocks,with no illustrations, other than a few black and white photos-one of Mrs Fish on bended knee at work in her rock garden. However, all is not lost. Determined gardeners unfamiliar with the various plants Mrs Fish names can refer to a nursery catalogue since 60-70 percent of the plants available in the 1950s can be found contemporary mail order publications
2 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Great Garden, Great Book, Not So Great Marriage 25 février 2004
Par Ashley Lambert-Maberly - Publié sur
Margery Fish must have loved her Walter very, very much to have put up with him all those years. Her account of the garden they made despite each other is one of the great triumphs of the "garden memoir" genre, and vastly more interesting than most such works.
The book is haunted by the presence of Walter, and his likes and dislikes, and right ways and wrong ways to do anything. You can't help but feel Mrs Fish must have breathed the world's biggest sigh of relief at his passing, since it finally allowed her to get on with her gardening.
Here's a sample: Walter would smother her seedlings by putting too much manure around HIS roses, he decorated the outbuildings with bought mounted animal trophy heads (until they rotted), and he would stand guard over his wife while she planted dahlias to ensure she did so 'correctly.'
Not to be missed! (And for others in the just-as-absorbing-when-not-about-the-garden books, you must turn to Beverley Nichols and any of his brilliantly charming works about house or garden).
Note: a 3 star ranking from me is actually pretty good; I reserve 4 stars for tremendously good works, and 5 only for the rare few that are or ought to be classic; unfortunately most books published are 2 or less.
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Husband's behavior was the best fertilizer... 24 février 2013
Par Benjamin Swagerty - Publié sur
Format:Format Kindle
Wow! Marg was married to a colossus of an ass-hat! Thankfully she had the solace of a garden...would that we all had such a place to escape the "hats" in our lives.
4 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 A Slightly Depressing Weed Of A Book 30 janvier 2003
Par Doctor Quartz - Publié sur
I wanted to like this book. I just finished the Dudley Warner Book, in the same classic gardening series, which I had savored like a good box of chocolates, rationing out a few pages, each day. But this one--oddly enough--depressed me slightly. It has a sad subplot. You have this stiff upper lip British Matron, who was married to Walter, who oppressed every good idea she had for their garden. She basically isn't able to implement her visions until he dies. But once he's dead you realize, in her humerous complaints, that she misses him. The rest is all gardening, without the breathtaking observations Charles Dudley Warner has, about plants, and without the richness of his language. Fish is an OK writer, but she's not great. I guess Charles Dudley Warner is an impossible act to follow. Warner has one chapter where General Ulysses Grant visits, then he realizes he must burn the chair he sat in. He's unbelievably funny. That book is full of life and a grand vision. Fish's book is somehow claustrophobic. Reading Warner's book, I feel like I'm in a most interesting place filled with surprises, in Fish's book I feel like I'm trapped in a garden, I'd rather exit. I've read about half of her book, and you'd have to pay me to finish it. I frown when I see it on the pile of books behind my comode.
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