The Guilty Gardener


Annabel Christie is wracked by guilt. It was rediscovering her late father’s letter after thirty years, which finally did it. A thunderbolt to Annabel’s conscience, the letter was a reminder of her idyllic childhood spent in a wonderful, wild garden, her lost love for nature, and the broken bond between father and daughter.

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Wracked by guilt for breaking a childhood bond with her naturalist father and fearful for the future of the planet in light of the catastrophic impact of climate change, Annabel sets out on a personal journey of redemption. She seeks to reconnect with nature and wildlife in the one place she knows she can make a real difference – her own, barren, neglected garden.

Guided by her eccentric, octogenarian neighbour, and with the ghost of her late father never far from her thoughts, Annabel begins to rediscover the therapeutic art of wildlife gardening. Her moving and often very funny green odyssey travels from an idyllic nature-filled childhood of hay meadows, hedgehogs and waxwings in the 1970s to the present day where biodiversity loss is reaching crisis point.

The Guilty Gardener neatly blends quirky memoir with pertinent observation of our natural world while showcasing the key to successful wildlife gardening. Illustrated with exquisite line drawings, it reminds us of the simple necessity and beauty of nature and how rewilding can restore love, hope, even life itself.

This book is a lovely demonstration of the importance of gardening for wildlife and enjoying all the benefits this brings, both for our natural world and also for our own wellbeing.
Estelle Bailey, CEO, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife Trust

Additional information

Weight 0.448 kg
Dimensions 21 × 14.8 × 2.4 cm