Organic Gardening
The natural no-dig way

By Charles Dowding

Organic Gardening
Hardback, 240 pages £19.99
Published: 18th June 2018
ISBN: 9780857844651
Format: 234mm x 168mm

Paperback, 272 pages £14.95
Published: 4th February 2013
ISBN: 9780857840899
Format: 234mm x 168mm

Click here to see ebook versions available
PDF, 272 pages
Published: 30th April 2013
ISBN: 9780857840905
EPUB, 272 pages
Published: 30th April 2013
ISBN: 9780857840912

Author Information: Dowding_author_info.doc
Generated AIs: 9780857844651.pdf

In this new full-colour edition of Organic Gardening, Charles Dowding shares the wealth of his experience, explaining his approach to soil and plants and revealing the range of techniques that have enabled him to grow healthy and vibrant crops for decades. Charles has been practising no-dig organic growing for over 30 years. In this new, full-colour edition of Organic Gardening he shares the wealth of his experience, explaining his approach to soil and plants and revealing the range of techniques that have enabled him to grow healthy and vibrant plants for decades. His success is based on some key principles:

• No-dig enhances soil structure and encourages healthy growth, especially when soil life is encouraged and multiplied through the addition of good compost and manure.

• Organic matter is best spread on the surface – just leave it on top and let the worms take it in, aerating the soil as they do so.

• When starting with weedy soil there is a period of three to twelve months, depending on weed types, when the emphasis is on cleaning and improving the soil.

• Using a no-dig method you can easily control weeds with just a little hand weeding or hoeing every ten days or so, when weeds are small.

Based on this approach and his experience of a system of permanent, slightly raised beds, Charles shows you how to grow a delicious variety of fruit and vegetables: what to choose, when to sow, plant and harvest, and how best to avoid pests and diseases. 

Foreword by Patrick Holden                                                 


Part 1: Letting Nature Nurture your Garden

1       The art of not digging                                                   

2       The basics                                                                     

3       Deciding what to grow                                                 

4       What’s in season?                                                        

5       Living with pests                                                           

6       Sowing seeds, raising plants                                      

7       Making compost                                                           

8       The moon                                                                      


Part 2: Healthy Harvests

9       Summer salads                                             

10     Winter salads                                                                

11     Alliums                                                                           

12     Choice of roots                                                             

13     Savouring summer                                                       

14     Brassicas                                                                      

15     Tomatoes, greenhouse vegetables and unusual vegetables        

16     Perennial vegetables                                                   

17     Herbs and edible flowers                                             

18     Tree fruit and nuts                                                         

19     Soft fruit (berries)                                                          


Appendix: Dig/no-dig experiment at Lower Farm              



Main index    
Index of recipes     


One of our most respected vegetable growers ... Now ordinary gardeners can benefit from his years of practical experience."

- Joy Larkcom

“This book will undoubtedly become the ‘no-dig’ bible, as was its predecessor.” 

- Pushing Up Dandelions website

Charles is a passionate and accomplished gardener, who grows vegetables of amazing flavour."

- Raymond Blanc

Green Books - Author photos - Charles Dowding web (Stephanie Hafferty)Charles is a veteran organic grower, having practised no-dig gardening for 30 years. From 1982 to 1990 he grew on nine acres for local and London markets, then ran a small farm in France, followed by a long spell of producing salad on an acre of surface-composted, undisturbed clay soil (no-dig for 15 years), which grew bountiful crops and few weeds, and included two polytunnels for winter salad and summer tomatoes and basil. In this garden he ran an experiment for six years to compare differences in growth between vegetables on dug and undug soil. He discovered different patterns of growth in most seasons, with slightly lower yields and more weeds and slugs on the dug beds.  He is currently establishing a new half-acre garden to illustrate no-dig practice and form the basis for a new experiment.

Charles has written four books on vegetable growing, contributes articles to many magazines, including Gardeners’ World, Gardens Illustrated and Grow It!, gives regular talks, advises many gardeners on best practice, including the National Trust at Sissinghurst, and runs day courses at home and other venues. He has appeared on radio and television, including Radio 4’s The Long View on the Peckham Experiment and BBC TV’s Gardeners’ World with Sarah Raven in 2008. Find out more at

Photo: Stephanie Hafferty

Publication Details:

Binding: Hardback, 240 pages
ISBN: 9780857844651
Format: 234mm x 168mm

Binding: Paperback, 272 pages
ISBN: 9780857840899
Format: 234mm x 168mm

Binding: Electronic book text, 272 pages
ISBN: 9780857840905
Format: PDF

Binding: Electronic book text, 272 pages
ISBN: 9780857840912
Format: EPUB

BISAC Code:  GAR016000
Imprint: Green Books

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