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Gardening at the Dragon's Gate

At Work in the Wild and Cultivated World
By: ,
Contributor Role: 
By (author)
Contributor Sequence Number: 
2
Contributor name: 
Paperback Book
Publisher: 
Bantam
 | 
February, 2008
ISBN:
9780553378030
Quantity: 
0
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Banyen's Description: 

Gardening at the dragon’s gate is fundamental work that permeates your entire life. It demands your energy and heart, and it gives you back great treasures as well, like a fortified sense of humor, an appreciation for paradox, and a huge harvest of Dinosaur kale and tiny red potatoes.

For over thirty years, Wendy Johnson has been meditating and gardening at the
GreenGulchFarmZenCenter in northern
California
, where the fields curve like an enormous green dragon between the hills and the ocean. Renowned for its pioneering role in
California
’s food revolution, Green Gulch provides choice produce to farmers’ markets and to
San Francisco
’s Greens restaurant. Now Wendy has distilled her lifetime of experience into this extraordinary celebration of inner and outer growth, showing how the garden cultivates the gardener even as she digs beds, heaps up compost, plants flowers and fruit trees, and harvests bushels of organic vegetables. Part Zen Koan, part love poem to the land, part master’s manual in the art and craft of gardening, Gardening at the Dragon’s Gate satisfies like a really good meal.

Gardeners sort. We arrange and rearrange our gardens constantly, heeding the pulse of the present moment, guided by equal measures of hubris and humility… By developing and designing your garden with a perception of individual plant families guiding your hand you may become a more relaxed and attentive gardener, deepening your innate affinity for green kinship in the garden.

Johnson is a hands-on, on-her-knees gardener, and she shares with the reader a wealth of practical knowledge and fascinating garden lore. But she is also a lover of the untamed and weedy, and she evokes through her exquisite prose an abiding appreciation for the earth—both cultivated and forever wild—in a book sure to earn a place in the great tradition of nature writing.

My first principle is to learn gardening from the wilderness outside the garden gate…

My second principle is to garden organically, always within the ample embrace of nature…

My third principle is to know the soil where I work in every way…

My fourth principle is to feed the soil and to work to build fertile land, not just grow crops…

My fifth gardening principle is to welcome diversity into the garden…

My sixth gardening principle is to slow down and invite the unknown, the unwelcome, and the failed into the life of the garden…

My seventh principle is generosity with the harvest.

If Earth took a human voice, it would be Wendy’s: wry, fierce, passionately attentive to detail, and so startling in its wild freedom it’s almost scary… This book is a tonic to the soul. I dare anyone to read it and not be shaken into a fuller, gladder life.” —Joanna Macy, author World as Lover, World as Self

“Flower and fruit of a lifetime’s horticultural experience, this master work goes far beyond the practical gardening advice it offers in abundance. It’s full of profound meditations on the chemistry and poetry of botany, geology, and natural history, all rendered in Wendy’s unmistakably rich voice. An instant classic.”—Norman Fischer, author, Taking Our Places

 

 

Publisher’s Description: 

Gardening at the Dragons Gate is fundamental work that permeates your entire life. It demands your energy and heart, and it gives you back great treasures as well, like a fortified sense of humor, an appreciation for paradox, and a huge harvest of Dinosaur kale and tiny red potatoes.

For more than thirty years, Wendy Johnson has been meditating and gardening at the Green Gulch Farm Zen Center in northern California, where the fields curve like an enormous green dragon between the hills and the ocean. Renowned for its pioneering role in Californias food revolution, Green Gulch provides choice produce to farmers markets and to San Franciscos Greens restaurant. Now Johnson has distilled her lifetime of experience into this extraordinary celebration of inner and outer growth, showing how the garden cultivates the gardener even as she digs beds, heaps up compost, plants flowers and fruit trees, and harvests bushels of organic vegetables.

Johnson is a hands-on, on-her-knees gardener, and she shares with the reader a wealth of practical knowledge and fascinating garden lore. But she is also a lover of the untamed and weedy, and she evokes through her exquisite prose an abiding appreciation for the earthboth cultivated and forever wildin a book sure to earn a place in the great tradition of American nature writing.For over thirty years, Johnson has been meditating and gardening at northern California's Green Gulch Farm Zen Center, where the fields curve like an enormous green dragon between the hills and the ocean. Now she distills a lifetime of hands-on gardening experience into this extraordinary celebration of inner and outer growth, showing how the garden cultivates the gardener. But she is also a lover of the untamed and weedy, evoking through her exquisite prose an abiding appreciation for both the cultivated and the wild Earth. 464 pp.

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