Keep Calm and Pot On: Book Review

Keep Calm and Pot On is a pocket sized little book written by Liz Dobbs, formerly of Gardens Monthly magazine. Whilst its design is based on the famous (and seemingly ubiquitous these days) WWII poster Keep Calm and Carry On, it's certainly not warlike in character.

It's a dippable little book with a short quote or handy tip per page. It's the kind of thing that's good for a 10 minute break in the potting shed with a mug of tea and a couple of biscuits. I rather like the following quote from page 119 as it sums up the way I feel about my garden:

I am the fonder of my garden for the trouble it gives me. Reginald Farrar (1880-1920).

For those of you who prefer reading from cover to cover rather than dipping, there's a thoughtful cloth bookmark incorporated into the spine. Anyone with an hour or so to spare, won't need it as you'll be able to whip through in no time as the book's short and sweet.

NB don't believe all of the blurb on Amazon e.g. Ever looked at a plant infected with white fly and wondered what to do? Well then this is the book for you. This isn't an advice book where you can look up the answer as there's no index. So ignore what the publisher says you'll get out of the book and just enjoy it as a miscellany.

I can see this forming a stocking filler for quite a few gardeners a little later on this year.

Note: I received a review copy via the publisher.


  1. Like the 'ubiquitous' poster, this book keeps floating across my horizon. I like the sound of it as a small gift for leisure gardening friends. Your advice to ignore the blurb and enjoy as a miscellany is appreciated, best I find it in a book shop for a browse first before buying!

  2. Thanks for sharing this book review. I love the title. We have those signs popping up all over here in the US, too. I bought a greeting card with "Keep Calm, Carry On" on it. I can see a series... "Keep Calm, Garden On", ...Compost On, Prune On, Mow On, etc. Fun!

  3. Sounds a delight - a book to entertain, intrigue and pass a few less-than-goal-oriented moments with. Like you said tea and biscuits!!! I wrote a similar title back in 2007 - Hortus Miscellaneous is near and dear to my heart but has received many (MANY!) complaints for its lack of index and "hodgepodge" nature... hmmmm... possibly the complainers didn't read my little book's subtitle "a gardener's hodgepodge of information & instruction". I sense a kindred spirit~

  4. It's been interesting to read several other blog post reviews of this delightful book! Flighty xx

  5. Think I shall be asking for that this christmas. I've seen a lot of keep calm things around and now theres a garden one. Thanks for highlighting it!!

  6. Caro - good idea :)

    Carol - there's all kinds of posters here too. Keep Calm and Eat a Cupcake is one example I found in York recently

    Lorene - welcome! Have you recovered from the Fling yet? I like the sound of your 'hodgepodge' - I must seek it out immediately

    Flighty - I remember your review and I see Claire over at The Ecospot has just posted hers

    anthonysgarden - welcome! It'll make a nice present methinks :)


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