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The Independent Culture
If gardens have inspired some of the finest writing in the English language (think Marvell, Tennyson etc), it's not particularly evident from the current gardening bestsellers. Instead, the focus is strictly practical: Alan Titchmarsh's "complete" guide (to be followed, perhaps, by guides to lucrative multi-tasking, novel-writing and How To Be A Sex Symbol), Parragon's guides to garden design and "Practical Gardening" and "Expert" guides to vegetables, herbs, trees and shrubs. Even Delia's muscled in on the act, moving from the kitchen onto the green sward beyond. Very few flowers here: instead, you'll have to feast your eyes on Monty Don (above).

All data supplied by Waterstone's


1 The Complete How to be a Gardener Alan Tichmarsh (BBC) pounds 20

2 Delia's Kitchen Garden Delia Smith (BBC) pounds 20

3 Vegetable and Herb Expert D G Hessayon (Expert Books) pounds 6.99

4 The Jewel Garden Sarah & Montague Don (Hodder) pounds 20

5 Practical Gardening (Parragon) pounds 4.99

6 The Complete Gardener Montague Don (D Kindersley) pounds 20

7 The Mini Bonsai Kit Robert W King (Courage Books) pounds 3.79

8 Garden Design (Parragon) pounds 4.99

9 New Complete Self-Sufficiency John Seymour (D Kindersley) pounds 20

10 The Tree and Shrub Expert D G Hessayon (Expert Books) pounds 6.99


1 Honeymoon Patterson & Roughan (Headline) pounds 17.99

2 Saturday Ian McEwan (Cape) pounds 17.99

3 The Broker John Grisham (Century) pounds 17.99

4 Emperor: The Field of Swords Conn Iggulden (HarperCollins) pounds 12.99

5 The Wives of Bath Wendy Holden (Headline) pounds 12.99

6 Body Double Tess Gerritsen (Bantam) pounds 12.99

7 Chainfire Terry Goodkind (Voyager) pounds 18.99

8 The Da Vinci Code: Illustrated Edition Dan Brown (Bantam) pounds 20

9 The Final Detail Harlan Coben (Orion) pounds 12.99

10 Life Expectancy Dean R Koontz (HarperCollins) pounds 17.99


1 A Brother's Journey Richard B Pelzer (Time Warner) pounds 14.99

2 The Little Prisoner Jane Elliott (Element Books) pounds 12.99

3 Auschwitz Laurence Rees (BBC) pounds 20

4 French Women Don't Get Fat Mireille Guiliano (Chatto) pounds 12

5 Jamie's Dinners Jamie Oliver (M Joseph) pounds 20

6 Red Herrings and White Elephants Albert Jack (Metro Books) pounds 9.99

7 Eats, Shoots & Leaves Lynne Truss (Profile) pounds 9.99

8 Belle de Jour Anonymous (Weidenfeld) pounds 12.99

9 The Two of Us Sheila Hancock (Bloomsbury) pounds 17.99

10 Flanimals Ricky Gervais (Faber) pounds 9.99