Emma Cooper
Since the dawn of the new millennium, when she sowed a few seeds in pots as a way to reduce her food miles, Emma Cooper has been smitten with edible and useful plants. She’s never happier than when she’s in her garden, up to her elbows in compost and tangled in twine. She went from gardening newbie to keen gardener to a passionate plant nerd in record time, resulting in the publication of her first book – The Alternative Kitchen Garden: An A to Z is the story of her first garden, and the wonderful and wacky plants that grew there.

This was soon followed by a second book, The Allotment Pocket Bible, which explains how to find, maintain and have fun with an allotment – traditional British growing spaces for garden-less gardeners.

Oh, and somewhere in there Emma found the time to write a glossy ‘magbook’ on food gardening for kids of all ages, which is called Growing Vegetables is Fun!, has got to its third edition and is available on Kindle.

That was before she went a bit more avant garde and wrote Jade Pearls and Alien Eyeballs, which despite the mystifying title is a gardening book. It’s about unusual edible plants and the people who grow them. And, if you buy the paperback version from Amazon, it comes in a brilliant pink cover that will really stand out on your bookshelf.

For several years Emma recorded the Alternative Kitchen Garden Show, a much-loved podcast about her gardening adventures. It often featured the most famous chickens in the blogosphere, Hen Solo and Princess Layer (and their pals Cluck Skywalker and Chew-buck-buck-bucka).

Then the chickens flew the coop and Emma was forced to move and abandon her garden. She went back to uni and became a fully-qualified ethnobotanist (a person intrigued by the myriad uses people make of plants) and embarked on a new set of planty adventures in a new garden in a secret location in Oxfordshire.

When the weather is inclement Emma stays inside and writes gardening and green living articles, and has been published in the Guardian, the Ecologist and Permaculture Magazine (among others) as well as guest posting on the BBC Gardening and Reader’s Digest Gardening blogs and making the occasional appearance on BBC Radio 4.

If you want to know more, you can drop Emma a line.

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