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Edible Perennial Gardening

Growing Successful Polycultures in Small Spaces

By Anni Kelsey
Foreword by Eric Toensmeier

Do you dream of a low-maintenance perennial garden that is full to the brim of perennial vegetables that you don’t have to keep replanting, but have only a small space? Do you want a garden that doesn’t take much of your time and that needs little attention to control the pests and diseases that eat your crops? Do you want to grow unusual vegetable varieties? You can have all of this with Edible Perennial Gardening.

Anni Kelsey has meticulously researched the little-known subject of edible perennials and selected her favorite, tasty varieties. She explains how to source and propagate different vegetables, which plants work well together in polycultures, and what you can plant in small, shady, or semi shady beds, as well as in sunny areas. It includes:

 • Getting started and basic principles

• Permaculture, forest gardening, and natural farming

• Growing in polycultures

• How to chose suitable leafy greens, alliums, roots, tubers, and herbs

• Site selection and preparation

• Building fertility

• Low-maintenance management strategies

If you long for a forest garden but simply don’t have the space for tree crops, or want to grow a low-maintenance edible polyculture, this book will explain everything you need to know to get started on a new gardening adventure that will provide you with beauty and food for your household and save you money.


“The best books on food growing are those written with a ‘warts and all’, practical perspective. Edible Perennial Gardening is an important book to help us to understand this vital topic. This wonderful guide is a bible.”--Michael Kelly, journalist, broadcaster, author and founder of GIY (Grow it Yourself)

"Anni Kelsey has a knowledge of perennial vegetables second to none. Now all that knowledge has overflowed from her garden into this rich and rewarding book. Perennial vegetables are one field of gardening that is still relatively unknown and Anni makes a significant impact on the body of knowledge we have about them. Follow her into her garden – abundance awaits you!"--Patrick Whitefield, permaculture teacher, designer and author of The Earth Care Manual

“I love Anni’s book. She’s taken traditionally ‘big space’ ideas and approaches and brought them alive on a domestic scale, where most gardeners operate. The bigger picture of redesigning our food system with perennials at its heart underlies, yet it never gets in the way of inspiring and enabling the reader with case studies, examples, advice, and experience. A must-have for forward-thinking gardeners.”--Mark Diacono, experimental gardener, journalist and author of A Year at Otter Farm

"This is a valuable addition to the literature on growing perennial vegetables. The author’s experiences of creating and maintaining polycultures are a great guide and inspiration to this challenging aspect of edible perennial gardening.”--Martin Crawford,Director of the Agroforestry Research Trustand author of Creating a Forest Garden and How To Grow Perennial Vegetables


Anni Kelsey

Anni Kelsey

Anni Kelsey graduated with a first-class degree in geography from Aberystwyth University in 1990. She has worked as a research officer for a council’s economic development department and on various urban regeneration projects. She is passionate about permaculture, forest gardening, and the Transition Movement.

Edible Perennial Gardening

Pages:176 pages
Book Art:Full-color illustrations throughout
Size: 6.75 x 9.5 inch
Publisher:Permanent Publications
Paperback: 9781856231497
Pub. Date April 25, 2014

Available In/Retail Price

Paperback, 176 pages, $22.95