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Dirt: The Lowdown on Growing a Garden with Style Paperback – July 24, 2000

5.0 out of 5 stars 16 customer reviews

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About the Author

Designer, writer, lecturer, and once-owner of four highly innovative fashion stores called Dianne B., Dianne Benson has been described as "A woman of fashion, a fabulous purveyor of words, stance, and attitude . . . ". she took up gardening with a fervor twelve years ago at the East Hampton home she shares with her husband and their dogs.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 388 pages
  • Publisher: iUniverse (July 24, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0595004911
  • ISBN-13: 978-0595004911
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 1 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,592,115 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is the first gardening book I bought and it is still one of my favorites. I knew absolutely nothing about plants or gardening and what I learned from this book was amazing. First, Dianne has fashion background so immediately all the gardening spam is eliminated - no hideous marigolds or alchemilla.Her plant descriptions are superb with correct botanical names AND phonetic pronounciations (to save you embarassment when you are describing some divine little number to Martha Stewart or Penelope Hobhouse).She discusses tools, clothing, soil preparation but most importantly the bones or strucuture of a garden that is really the framework for the plantings. She takes you through the process of how she created her garden but unlike most gardening authors, has a great sense of humor and has the most marvelous anecdotes. It is heartbreaking that this book is no longer in print, because she makes gardening fun and creative and not so daunting to beginners. If you can get your hands on this book, it is worth almost any price. This and a good plant encyclopedia will get you through many years of gardening. Her next book will doubtless be sensational.
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Format: Paperback
I love to read books about gardening, and the best ones are also autobiographical.Dianne Benson Has imagination ,guts and grit!!I was hoping by now that she has written a new one because I read this one every year in the spring.She is inspiring about what to plant and how to plant and does her homework about the latest stuff out there.She is funny,personal and very, very sharp. More books Dianne , More Please!!!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Hello - I have just received word that DIRT is now officially live and can be ordered immediately from iUniverse.com. It should be available here on amazon and other major on-line booksellers soon. I am still working on the DIRTier version.
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Format: Paperback
As the ower of a fixer-upper, I was immediately drawn into the book by Diane's description of her own property and house at first view. "The house was awful. Sort of '50s and not even gracious enough to be called ranch style. But the property was so raw and beautiful and overgrown....." I can relate!
This book is delightful and informative down to the details of what you should expect to pay and who has the best selection. Who would have guessed that a fashion maven like Diane B. would comparison shop so astutely. I love this book and very happy that it's been re-printed since I'm now telling all my friends about this delightful tomb.
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Format: Paperback
Although Ms. Benson is apparently a garden neighbor of the great "Martha", her book is refreshingly different. We get to see not only what worked in the garden but also the things that didn't. There is extensive written information on how plants work together in different combinations. For the next version, I hope there are pictures.I especially liked the chapters on what the well dressed gardener wears and finding a new home in the garden for loved but broken pottery. Alas, I loaned my copy to a (former) gardening friend who has not returned it and am desperately seeking another copy. I can't believe this book is out of print.
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By A Customer on May 13, 1997
Format: Paperback
A delightful romp in the garden with one time fashion maven turned gardener extraordinnaire Dianne Benson. Dirt delivers helpful information with wit and a discriminating sense of style. The hands on advice is appropriate for the beginner as well as the more accomplished gardener. Be warned: Dirt will whip you into an enthusiastic gardening frenzy. A absolute must have. Hopefully Dianne will leave the garden long enough to inspire her readers again with More Dirt
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I don't even remember how I found out about this book. I bought a used copy on Amazon about a year ago and am today ordering another copy as mine is falling apart and diry from being used outside. I couldn't garden without it in my Zone 7 shady garden with horrible clay soil. Along with the basics on gardening it is a personal, opinionated account of creating a garden. I may not ever grow the exotic tropicals Ms. Benson loves(I am too lazy to dig them up for the winter) but there is so much information in this book on what to grow, how to do it and what to combine it with you are sure to find something you love. Be aware that there are no lush color photographs, just some black and whites and line drawings. Love it, Love it, Love it!
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Format: Paperback
Not only does this book have a lot of inspiration and helpful information, but it's even entertaining. I didn't buy it with that expectation, but I found it hard to put down. She has a different attitude from mine about a number of things, but that doesn't take away from my enjoyment of the book at all. I'm recommending it to friends who are already gardening, and I think it would also be a great book for beginners.
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