07 May 2010

Rhapsody in Green

As you know I am a fan of Beverley Nichols. Nichols was a remarkable writer. Among his various and far-reaching books, he often wrote about his gardens. Unfortunately, in Nichols’ mind, he is best known for his garden books. Being a “garden writer” to Nichols, was limiting, but he was just so good at it.

Roy C. Dicks has edited together a collection of Beverley Nichols opinionated, witty selections from his gardening tomes. Rhapsody in Green: The Garden Wit and Wisdom of Beverley Nichols is insightful and funny and a great introduction to Nichols thoughts on gardening. Here is a sampling:

To dig one’s own spade into one’s own earth! Has life anything better to offer than this?

Just as a room without a mirror is dead, so a garden without water is never quite alive.

Begonias are not flowers, they are a state of mind, and a regrettable state into the bargain.

Orchids…are nature’s shameless assertion of the doctrine of art for art’s sake.

There is no way to belittle someone who writes so eloquently, even if it is about gardening.


  1. Lucinda,the book is so delightful. and a great intro indeed. a great gifty bookie thingy. pgt

  2. Nichols, a relative of John Masefield, was a pretty darn good mystery author as well; see my blog posts on Nichols:



  3. He was also one of the first Bright Young People in London during the Jazz Age. He's top on my list of dead people I want to meet!


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