Beautifully written and illustrated, Montrose: Life in a Garden is Goodwin's affectionate biography of her gardens, recounting how and why each section was developed over the years, including the Dianthus Walk, Nandinaland, Hellebore Slope, Mother-in-Law Walk, Snowdrop Woods, and Jo's Bed. It is also a meticulous month-by-month chronicle of a specific year in these gardens--a year that saw a punishing drought that threatened Goodwin's no-irrigation policy, a damaging December ice storm, and the beginnings of a plan to preserve Montrose in the future.
Working on her knees for long days throughout the year, Nancy Goodwin always has a vision of how her gardens will appear in twelve months or in twelve years. She will spend weeks, for instance, planting hundreds of snow drops along a woodsy path in order to enjoy a fleeting week of exquisite beauty in coming years. She never puts anything into the ground without imagining what form, color, and texture it will add to a bed. With tireless patience and unflagging optimism, Goodwin will wait years to see a single plant bloom.
Following Goodwin's activities throughout the year, readers will learn the fundamentals of maintaining a four-season garden in Zone 7 in the South. Award-winning garden illustrator Ippy Patterson has provided more than 160 lavish illustrations of the gardens at Montrose and these meticulously detailed drawings appear throughout the book.