Lavender, basil, hyssop, balm, sage, rue — the thinking gardener’s guide to herbs. Writer/naturalist Henry Beston, a founding father of the environmental movement, believed that a strong connection to nature is essential. “It is only when we are aware of the earth and of the earth as poetry that we truly live,” Beston says in his now-classic Herbs and the Earth. In this book, Beston shares one of those connections as seen through the oldest group of plants known to gardeners.
“A garden of herbs,” he writes, “is a garden of things loved for themselves in their wholeness and integrity. It is not a garden of flowers, but a garden of plants which are sometimes very lovely flowers and are always more than flowers.” Whether you are already a committed herbalist or just dreaming of planting your first small garden, this book is a powerfully rich source of inspiration and information. As Roger B. Swain observes in his moving introduction, Herbs and the Earth has an intensity that evokes the herbs themselves, as if, pressed between the pages, their aroma has seeped into the pages.