This book introduces the methods, ingredients and delights of urban home gardening for beginners as well as avid gardeners who are interested in growing healthy, organic and tasty food for everyday living. Appealing to everyone from those with garden, balcony and rooftop spaces to those who grow vegetables in containers, this expanded edition builds on the success of the first edition and includes over 270 full colour photographs and updated material that shows the reader how to nurture and harvest food plants such as avocados, chayote, dill, dragon fruit and pak choi. Arthur van Langenberg also offers hands-on recipes for transforming home-grown natural ingredients into tasty dishes and sauces such as Macanese sweet potato pudding, fig syrup and green tomato chutney.
Arthur’s depth and breadth of knowledge on growing food plants are beyond compare, both theoretically and practically. His love of plants in general, and growing vegetables in particular, is clearly evident in the quality and variety of vegetables he grows in his own garden. He is also an excellent teacher, who gives clear and detailed explanations for everything he demonstrates, both in person and in his inspiring books. Arthur’s hard earned experience is an invaluable source of information and he constantly researches and experiments to enhance understanding of growing food plants. This second edition of Growing Your Own Food in Hong Kong expands on the rich content of his first book on the subject. Whether you are a novice, experienced gardener or armchair student, it is an invaluable source of wisdom used together with the first edition or as a new arrival in your reference library.
Long time Hong Kong gardener
Past Vice Chair, The Hong Kong Gardening Society
Editor, Scarecrow, Produce Green Foundation
Part philosophy, part gardening manual, this expanded edition of Growing Your Own Food in Hong Kong inspires the reader to start growing food plants. There is plenty of health advice—which food provides antioxidant ten times more effective than Vitamin E and is enhanced through cooking? There is history—the sweet potato was spread to China via Macao, en route from colonial Brazil to Portugal. There is chemistry—the scented geranium, despite its strong citronella scent, has no effect on mosquitoes. Finally there is anthropology—the humble dill was once used to cure hiccups. Arthur also succeeds in sensitising us to the challenges and the often overlooked contribution of farmers in our world today.
Novice roof gardener
I was very happy to hear of a second edition of Growing Your Own Food in Hong Kong. As a keen organic grower myself, Arthur’s books are an inspiration to me, especially when I first encountered Hong Kong’s local weather conditions. His wise words made practical sense and it was a relief to read of shared difficulties and possible solutions to common problems. Step-by-step sowing guides, handy hints and photographs of vegetables I only see in markets were highlights. Cooking recipes for healthy eating were an extra bonus. I am sure this expanded edition will continue to offer encouragement and delight to all gardeners, both old and new.
In his preface to the second edition of Growing Your Own Food in Hong Kong, Arthur van Langenberg reaffirms his message: to cultivate a garden is to harvest knowledge. Arthur’s gentle humour shines throughout, and the book is interspersed with snippets of medical comments—I was fascinated to learn that dill stops hiccups, and that the Greeks used it as a love potion. We are fortunate to have such an excellent gardener in our midst who tells it as it is in this varied climate.
Arthur’s new book resolutely affirms that with attention and knowledge anyone with access to sunlight and water could bring out the best in a plant. It further encourages us all to think small, for he has shown that it’s possible to create wonders even with just a few handfuls of good soil. A most resourceful collection of plant information... and just for Hong Kong!
John & Jan Chan
Fei Ngor Shan
This book has been a valuable help in fulfilling my dream of growing crops and setting up a microfarm while living in a city. As my most valuable reference guide, it includes exhaustive step-by-step advice on soil management, sowing, and using fertilisers as well as a comprehensive list of when and how to plant all the items you want to grow. This expanded edition builds on Arthur’s thirty years of experience in cultivating a small garden in Hong Kong.
Retired IT guy returning to his Welsh farming roots W ith the publication of this much-enhanced second edition of Growing Your Own Food in Hong Kong, Arthur has added more valuable tips, recipes and tantalising photos. In a new entry on the many uses of lemon-scented geranium, Arthur gives practical advice on propagation, the dangers of over-watering, the uses of the edible flowers, and how the leaves can flavour ices and jellies, as well as the delightful suggestion of inserting bruised leaves into folded napkins of diners who will open them to discover a surprising and refreshing lemon scent. The historical references, the erudite quotations and the often whimsical comments make this book an absolute joy to read!
Member, The Hong Kong Gardening Society
Arthur van Langenberg has proved that one does not require acres of land to grow a bountiful harvest of vegetables, fruits and herbs. Visiting his garden, I was amazed that in an area not larger than a single car park space, he had grown vegetables like cabbages, sugar cane and asparagus to name a few. The photographs in this book capture all of the plants that he has grown, while the detailed advice he openly imparts comes from successive trials of endurance and resourcefulness over the years. For people wishing to have a self-sustainable garden in subtropical climates like Hong Kong, this book is an indispensable companion.
Private banker and orchid enthusiast