Abercrombie, John (1726-1806)
and Thomas Mawe
Every Man His Own Gardener: Being a New and Much More Complete Gardener's Calendar and General Directory Than Any One Hitherto Published. . .
The seventeenth edition, corrected and greatly enlarged, with many considerable new additions. London: Printed for J. Johnson [and 14 others]: Printed by Mssrs. Bye and Law. . . J Bryar . . . and T. Davison, 1803. Includes index.
First printed in 1767, this popular gardening book went through more than 25 editions. Thomas Mawe, then gardener to the Duke of Leeds, was originally listed as the author of this book by the real author, Abercrombie, who hoped Mawe's name would boost sales, which it did. Abercrombie, at the time, was in the seed and nursery business. He went on to be gardener at Kew.
This work consists of a very detailed, month by month description of all activities necessary for the maintenance of a garden. It also includes an alphabetical listing of kitchen-garden plants, fruit trees, ornamental shrubs, and perennials and biennial flower plants. The author provides very practical approaches to the various problems associated with the maintenance of a garden, including such advice as how to preserve the cherries from the birds.