Si­mon Grif­fiths, Thames & Hud­son, $59.99

Country Style - - BOOKS -

“A day with­out get­ting your hands in the soil or with­out read­ing books is a day wasted,” writes Si­mon Grif­fiths. Some of his pho­to­graphs should surely win in­ter­na­tional prizes, the sil­hou­et­ted grasses in win­ter, for ex­am­ple, which I’d love printed over an en­tire wall. He fea­tures 22 gar­dens, most of them in Vic­to­ria and be­long­ing to friends and neigh­bours, be­cause there’s noth­ing like an in­ter­est­ing gar­den to draw you into a clan. He has seven cat­e­gories: plant col­lec­tors, veg­etable grow­ers, de­sign lovers, ro­man­tics, na­tive-plant fans, thrifty prop­a­ga­tors, and the Ce­cil B. Demille con­tin­gent, bless their cot­ton socks. What would we do with­out in­di­vid­u­als pre­pared to spend a king’s ran­som and to toil night and day so as to put na­ture on dis­play in all her glory? The gi­gan­tic Ja­panese maples at the gar­dens of Cloude­hill ar­rived from Yoko­hama in 1928 and have been bur­geon­ing ever since. Au­tumn is the best time to visit — I’ll be there.

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