Garden Heroes – John Seymour

Sometimes you come across a book that can totally change your life! A battered old edition of the Self Sufficient Gardener by John Seymour did just that.

True I still lived in town, with a small garden and only a few planters for salad crops, so his book hardly seemed like the most relevant investment! I was hardly going to be the model of sustainable living John wanted to inspire. But, it got me thinking, planning and dreaming of a life with a little land, and a whole lot of home-grown vegetables!

As life has a funny way of working itself out, I ended up with a few acres within a year of getting my muddy hands on the book, and quickly began putting into practice what he taught.

That was way back in 2005, shortly after the death of this great man. He was forward thinking, in his understanding that people need to consume less from outside their own making. True sustainable living is pretty hard to achieve, but it is more than possible to redress the balance a little with some thoughtful use of whatever space you have to hand.

It was because of Mr Seymour’s entertaining writings that I learnt you can survive on far less money than you might think, if you have the luxury of a little space in which to grow some of your own food. True it’s a challenge, battling with pests and the issue of gluts (more cabbage anyone ;) ). But it is also a great boost to be providing a little more for yourself, through your own effort, than you ever thought you could. And, when times are hard it is amazing how much cash can be saved by relying more fully on seasonal foods produced at home.

I just thought it would be nice to mention my ultimate garden hero. John Seymour taught many thousands of people, through courses and his writings, just how more self-reliant we could be. If it wasn’t for him, I might never have progressed from a few tubs of tomatoes and peppers, to a vegetable plot full of brassicas, onions, garlic, beans, tomatoes and more.

Thanks John!



2 Responses to Garden Heroes – John Seymour

  1. Andy

    Oh goodness, I remember this book! I read several of them that came out on the back of The Good Life, which would have been in mid-70s I guess? But this one in particular because it wasn’t just about gardening, it was a whole lifestyle :)

  2. Alexis

    Yeah – John Seymour was definitely different. I love that his books aren’t preaching, they are simply inspiring! Plus he taught me how to string onions, and for some bizarre reason I find that very satisfying!

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