'Although I had advertised myself as a gardener although that morning I had dressed in the way I thought a gardener would dress - corduroys, check shirt, old suede shoes - although I had announced myself as a gardener, and although, as I surveyed the overgrown beds, I was stroking my chin in the manner I imagined a gardener would, the truth was my knowledge of the activity was slim. Basic in fact. I could dig things up, I could cut things back, I could mow a lawn, and I could build a bonfire, but for anything more creative, anything that ventured towards cultivation, I would have to go home and consult the manual. My plan was to learn on the job. My problem was I needed a job in the first place.' Mark Wallington's bizarre experiences amongst the hellebores and overgrown rock roses of the middle classes are marvels of humour and eccentricity. If you've ever wanted to garden - or, even more adventurously, hire a gardener - this book will put you wise to all the tricks of the trade - and, incidentally, explain why Mark Wallington now earns his living as a highly successful television scriptwriter.
Mark Wallington was born in Swanage in Dorset in 1953. He worked for a while as a gardener in London before becoming a scriptwriter and a journalist. In 1982 he walked the South West Coastal Path and his subsequent book, 500-Mile Walkies, became a bestseller. In 1992 Mark Wallington published his novel The Missing Postman and then wrote the script for the award-winning television play starring James Bolam. He is much sought-after as a film and television writer, working from his home in the High Peak in Derbyshire, where he keeps a truly wonderful garden. He is married with two children.