by Beverley Nichols
This week I'm going to do a special tribute to the author Beverley Nichols, who was born on this day in 1898.
Nichols is remembered for his writing and his love of gardening and cats. Nichols wrote over 60 books - but he is best remembered for his gardening books.
In 1932, Nichols wrote Down the Garden Path. It became an instant bestseller on both sides of the Atlantic. In the book, Nichols wrote about his 1928 purchase of a weekend retreat, a thatched cottage in the village of Glatton. Nichols knew nothing about gardening when he bought the cottage, so he shared every discovery and disaster in his books. Based on the positive response to his first book, Nichols wrote two more books on his Glatton experiences. The second book was “A Thatched Roof” (released in 1933), and the third was “A Village in a Valley” (released in 1934). The books are referred to as “The Glatton Trilogy” or “The Allways Chronicles.”
Here are some excerpts from Nichol's first book, Down the Garden Path:
“...a cyclamen that looks like a flight of butterflies, frozen for a single, exquisite moment in the white heart of Time...”
“It was not till I experimented with seeds plucked straight from a growing plant that I had my first success...the first thrill of creation...the first taste of blood. This, surely, must be akin to the pride of paternity...indeed, many soured bachelors would wager that it must be almost as wonderful to see the first tiny crinkled leaves of one's first plant as to see the tiny crinkled face of one's first child.”
“I had never ‘taken a cutting’ before… .Do you not realize that the whole thing is miraculous? It is exactly as though you were to cut off your wife’s leg, stick it in the lawn, and be greeted on the following day by an entirely new woman, sprung from the leg, advancing across the lawn to meet you.”