Down to Earth With Helen Dillon

By Helen Dillon

In this book Helen Dillon encapsulates, in her inimitable witty and accessible style, her lifetime of gardening know-how, deep love of plants and assured sense of design. Here is illumination for every gardener—from the beginner wondering why nothing will grow in the garden of the new house to the sophisticate aiming at exquisitely subtle effects. Thoughtful ideas on garden style are underpinned by practical advice on looking after plants and careful instructions on the basics of digging, planting and propagating. Helen Dillon teaches us all how to garden, and garden well.

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Helen Dillon

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Review quotes

“Refreshingly outspoken, endearingly offbeat, Dillon offers advice and instruction on an eclectic array of gardening topics. . . . Like the most delightful gardens themselves, Dillon’s book invites the reader to pop in and out, learning—and laughing—along the way.” —Booklist

“Gardening from a pristine Dublin plot, droll green thumb Dillon offers equal measures of witticism and advice—both expert techniques and common sense tips—in this verdant, photo-rich guide, imbued with enough passion to inspire an all-consuming hobby. The perfect book for anyone contemplating a leap into the gardening lifestyle. . . . informative, personal, and gorgeous.” —Publishers Weekly

“Features witty and instructive essays by this esteemed garden maker based in Dublin.” —Boston Globe

“For people who enjoy fine writing as well as fine gardening, I heartily recommend Down to Earth With Helen Dillon. . . . When I first read Helen Dillon, who gardens in Dublin, it was one of those moments when I knew I’d found a special writer who has a great touch whether she’s writing about slugs or topsoil dealers.” —Newsday

“A very informative and fun-to-read book that covers the entire spectrum of gardening. It is written for the broad range of gardeners from novice to experienced, and is written in a very accessible style.” —Washington Gardener

“Dillon’s straightforward writing style perfectly suits her open attitude. She is funny, too, peppering her text with just the right amount of wit, be it subtle or stark. She does both to a T. In this book, readers find a voice they can follow and trust.” —Horticulture

​“A delightful book for both new and experienced gardeners, full of Dillon’s hands-on experience. She is as generous in sharing her mistakes as her successes.” —Homes + Gardens Northwest

“Dillon keeps the details to a minimum, so you can pick it up at random, or keep it by your bedside, read a chapter in a few minutes and absorb a great deal of information. For people who like to be out in the garden (rather than just looking at one), this is a book you’ll want in your collection.” —Garden Design Online

“By the end I felt that I had made a new friend in gardening, and was as familiar with her garden as it is possible to be without actually visiting it in person.” —Social Gardener

“Easy to read, witty, and full of information. Dillon’s love of plants emerges in thoughtful ideas and practical advice.” —San Diego Home and Garden Lifestyles

“I love reading any garden writer who demonstrates wit, good humor, and brisk common sense, three traits Dillon shares with another of my favorite writers, the late Christopher Lloyd.” —Garden Rant

“Helen Dillon mixes an irresistible Irish wit with common-sense design advice and plant knowledge. . . . She describes the arc of her gardening life and the evolution of her famous Dublin garden in frank words that will appeal equally to beginning and seasoned gardeners.” —The Seattle Times

“Dillon is a true garden guru well-known in the United States as well as in Great Britain and New Zealand. . . . Her design ideas and methods are easily transported across the ocean.” —Daily Hampshire Gazette

“Dillon’s garden is truly beautiful and displayed throughout in gorgeous photographs. The book is a pleasure to leaf through. . . . Dillon brings an ease and a conversational tone to the text and and she can be very funny.” —Winston-Salem Journal

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Publication date
October 10, 2007