Softcover, 168 pages
Reprinting now, available Spring 2015
|Herbs and the Earth
by Henry Beston
Introduction by Roger B. Swain
From one of America's most sensitive and fervent nature writers comes this classic of herbal lore and legend, new in paperback. This is not strictly a gardening book (although there is plenty for the gardener to learn in it), but a singular example of a man thinking about what he grows—not only how it grows, but its roots in religion, the Bible, history and medicine. The book was written at Chimney Farm, the Maine homestead immortalized in Northern Farm‚ to which he repaired in 1931 with his wife Elizabeth Coatsworth, and where he died in 1968.
Beston described his efforts as "part garden book, part musing study of our relation to nature through the oldest group of plants known to gardeners." But, as Roger 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." The book is lovingly illustrated with the woodcuts of the great American stone cutter/letter designer/craftsman John Howard Benson.