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The Heirloom Gardener

Traditional Plants and Skills for the Modern World

The Heirloom Gardener
John Forti By (author)
Product ID:  689993
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Timber Press

Limited ***

6.0 X 8.0 in
264 pg

GARDENING / Essays & Narratives
GARDENING / Techniques
HOUSE & HOME / Sustainable Living


An A-to-Z compilation of traditional gardening skills and heirloom plants, nostalgically illustrated with wood block art. 


The Heirloom Gardener empowers readers with a toolkit of traditional and sustainable practices for an emerging artisanal crafts movement, and a brighter future.” —Alice Waters, chef and owner, Chez Panisse; founder, The Edible Schoolyard Project 
“Follow John Forti down the garden pathway to the deepest roots of plant lore, food ways, herbal traditions, and living in green harmony on this fragile earth.” —Sharon Lovejoy, author of Sunflower Houses; Roots, Shoots, Buckets & Boots; and Trowel & Error
“This passionate and personal manifesto encourages us to upset the applecart of mass production and commodification and look back to the many streams of land-based wisdom still available to us, to find a better way forward.” —Jennifer Jewell, writer/producer/creator of Cultivating Place
“Celebrates the creative ways people are bringing hand-crafted goods to market in meaningful, sustainable ways.” —Carlo Petrini, founder, Slow Food International
The Heirloom Gardener is for everyone who cares about the health of our planet.” —Julie Moir Messervy, owner of Julie Moir Messervy Design Studio
“Forti’s groundbreaking book builds on shared roots to forge a stronger, better, greener tomorrow.” —Tovah Martin, author of The Garden in Every Sense and Season

“Forti aims to encourage people to connect with the land and plants, providing inspiration through his experiences and reflections. Forti’s work as a historical gardener informs his approach, which is enhanced by the beautiful wood block print artwork that accompanies each essay and illustrates key ideas throughout the book.” —Booklist

“Social history, botany and home economics merge in a fascinating book to dip in and out of.” —The English Garden

“Interesting information about horticultural practices, skills, and crafts that shouldn’t be lost over time.” —The Washington Gardener

Author Bio

John Forti is a garden historian, horticulturist, and ethnobotanist who has directed gardens for Plimoth Plantation Museum, Strawberry Banke Museum, Massachusetts Horticultural Society, and Bedrock Gardens. He also serves as a regional Slow Food Governor and biodiversity specialist for Slow Food USA. He has won numerous awards for historic garden preservation and children’s garden design, and he received the 2020 Award of Excellence from National Garden Clubs, the largest nonprofit volunteer gardening organization in the world. John has served as board chair for the New England Unit of the Herb Society of America, and he received the Nancy Putnam Howard Award for Excellence in Horticulture from the HSA. He lectures nationally, and he reaches millions globally from his Facebook page The Heirloom Gardener - John Forti. Follow him at