Beverley Nichols (1898-1983) was a prolific author, playwright, composer, and media personality. Though much of his work has been forgotten, his garden writing has stood the test of time. His amusing anecdotes, poetic contemplations, and penetrating observations speak to all gardeners - from houseplant killers to nursery professionals - and capture the joy, heartache, and hilarity of gardening. "Rhapsody in Green" speaks to the true spirit of Beverley Nichols. Compiled by Roy C. Dicks and drawn from fifteen of his best titles, these carefully selected passages offer a tantalizing taste of Nichols' humor, passion, and poetry. Designed for easy browsing and casual reference, it is organized by subject, including favorite plants, despised plants, and the secrets to successful gardening. Readers will also delight in William McLaren's original line drawings spread throughout the text. This is a must-have for Nichols fans, gardeners, and plant lovers.
Be prepared for delight as you read Rhapsody in Green - you won't want to put it down ... and you may never look at gardens in the same way again. -- Caleb Melchior Greater Southeast Missouri Master Gardener 20090301 If you find yourself having to make a speech in which gardening is a topic, this is an exceptional and irresistible crib-sheet. -- Marilis Hornidge Lincoln County News 20090409 What a great way to get a taste of one of the funniest, most remarkable, and wholeheartedly enthusiastic garden voices of the past century. Green Prints 20090501 Nichols' eloquent yet humorous prose combined with the straitlaced nature of English gardening makes a wonderful read. -- Diana Dickinson Country Gardens 20090801 If you're moved to 'listen to flowers,' you're sure to discover a kindred spirit in Nichols. Horticulture 20091201 These short extracts - by turns practical, philosophical, humorous, and lyrical - express the joys and frustrations of being a home gardener. -- Lori D. Kranz Bloomsbury Review 20090301 A wonderful introduction into Nichols' world, his passions, his crotchets, and his humor. -- Pat Leuchtman Commonweeder blog 20091031
Beverley Nichols (1898-1983) was a prolific writer on subjects ranging from religion to politics and travel, in addition to authoring six novels, five detective mysteries, four children's stories, six autobiographies, and six plays. He is perhaps best remembered today for his gardening books. The first of them, Down the Garden Path, centered on his home and garden at Glatton and has been in print almost continuously since 1932. Merry Hall (1951) and its sequels Laughter on the Stairs (1953) and Sunlight on the Lawn (1956) document Nichols's travails in renovating a Georgian mansion and its gardens soon after the war. His final garden was at Sudbrook Cottage, which serves as the setting for Garden Open Today (1963) and Garden Open Tomorrow (1968). The progress of all three gardens was followed avidly by readers of his books and weekly magazine columns. Roy C. Dicks is a native of Fayetteville, North Carolina. He received his master's degree in library science from the University of North Carolina, and was a professional librarian for 27 years. He also holds degrees in English and drama from East Carolina University. For Roy, theater has been a consuming hobby. He has performed 65 roles on stage, directed 34 productions, and spent 10 years as artistic director of a theater company in Raleigh. He is currently a contracted arts writer and critic for the Raleigh News and Observer, a position he has held since 1997. His passion for Beverley Nichols led him to collect all 60 Nichols books and to visit four Nichols homes in England. His enthusiasm for Nichols naturally led to a theatrical lecture based on Nichols's life and works that he regularly delivers to garden clubs and horticultural organizations at such diverse locations as London's Kew Gardens, Atlanta's Flower and Garden Show, and the Indianapolis Museum of Art. Roy has assisted Timber Press with ten reprints of Nichols's books, indexing them all and writing introductions for half of them. He lives and indulges in armchair gardening in Raleigh, North Carolina, and considers himself a world traveler - 30 countries visited so far.