Seasonal produce and home-grown wisdom from one gardener’s allotment year
by Rekha Mistry
2 February 2023 | £18.99 | Hardback | 192 pages
The urban gardener who swapped a successful business for an ‘allotment career’ – Rekha spills the beans on growing delicious veg throughout the year
· In her first book, Rekha Mistry reveals how to grow more than 40 seasonal crops with garden and kitchen tips, monthly tasks, and favourite seed varieties
· From successful businesswoman to busy north London allotment blogger and garden writer, Rekha Mistry is now a regular presenter on BBC TV Gardeners’ World where she shares her 30+ years’ experience from a self-taught amateur to professional gardener.
· Ideal for those who love cooking and eating seasonally, the book is organised by the time of year crops are harvested
In her debut book, Rekha’s Kitchen Garden, garden and food writer Rekha Mistry shares her veg’ growing secrets from her inspiring North London allotment that bursts with the very best seasonal produce all year round.
With easy-to-follow tips on how to grow organic vegetables, fruits and herbs, the book is packed with personality, humour, honesty and stunning photography that follows a full growing year on Rekha’s allotment. As a firm believer in cooking and eating seasonal food, the author has designed the book around when crops are harvested, to ensure you can make the most of your tasty produce.
Seasonal ‘Garden tips’ on every page offer advice and solutions that Rekha uses in her own allotment, while ‘Kitchen tips’ reveal how Rekha makes the most of her harvest. ‘Planting partners introduce readers to companion planting, while suggested varieties reveal the crops that Rekha recommends from her own growing experience.
Rekha’s Kitchen Garden also brims with advice on how to grow organically, prevent disease and pests and how to successfully try crop rotation. There is also a very handy month-by-month task list for the home, greenhouse and outdoors so you can keep your growing on track.
Rekha also shares her inspiring gardening journey from helping her mother on her childhood Zambian kitchen garden, to her current plot. She said: “I wasn’t born with a silver garden fork in my hand. In the beginning, I was self-taught, learning along the way. I asked questions. I researched how I could grow food organically and sustainably. I scoured second-hand gardening books, picking up tips from these writers and experts.
“Before long, my allotment became far more than a pastime. I said goodbye to a successful 25-year career running our family business, started my gardening blog, and discovered a love for photography. I enrolled for an RHS diploma in Horticulture, which led to work as a professional gardener in a prestigious London garden – and at the same time kick-started a career as a garden and food writer and TV presenter.
“Now, my love for fresh produce has outgrown the paradise that was my mother’s kitchen garden; it’s outgrown that tiny space that doubled as a family football pitch. It has become a way for me to share my experiences, my expertise, and – more importantly – my love for all things grow-your-own. It has led, one way or another, to this book.”
Notes for editors:
Rekha Mistry is a writer and kitchen gardener, named by Country Living Magazine as one to watch in 2021. After reaching the quarter-final of the BBC’s Big Allotment Challenge in 2015 and achieving the RHS Diploma in Horticulture, she is now a regular writer for BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine and the RHS, and worked as a gardener at the historic Inner Temple Garden. Her North London allotment appears on Gardeners’ World (BBC), and as a gardening influencer her Instagram account @Rekha.garden.kitchen has over 100k followers.