Masks are Required in the Library

by order of the Town of Andover Select Board, September 13, 2021

Memorial Hall Library

The Heirloom Gardener: An Evening with John Forti

Thursday, October 28, 2021 - 7:00pm

The Andover Seed Library Lecture Series welcomes garden lecturer John Forti to share his new book and gardening wisdom via Zoom. Register through Zoom.john forti

These days, we all need some good news and a way to participate in meaningful change. The Heirloom Gardener is a book for gardeners who want to deepen their knowledge and improve life for families, pollinators and wildlife in their own backyards.  It’s a love poem to the earth; a map to the art of living intentionally and a guidepost for environmental gardeners and artisans.  It unearths old-ways, storied plants and artisanal life-skills; like seed-saving, herbalism, foraging, distillation, ethnobotany and organics which contribute to a new 21st century arts and crafts movement. With woodcuts from Caldecott Medal artist Mary Azarian, The Heirloom Garden offers a dose of wild hope for a weary nation.

John Forti is a garden historian and ethnobotanist who has directed gardens for Plimoth Plantation Museum, Strawbery Banke Museum, Massachusetts Horticultural Society, and Bedrock Gardens. As a Slow Food Slow Food USA Governor and biodiversity specialist, his preservation work has helped to restore countless native and heirloom plants and has brought traditional artisanal practices to modern thinking.  He has won numerous awards for historic garden preservation, children’s garden design, herbal and historical education and the 2021 Award of Excellence from National Garden Clubs, the largest volunteer gardening organization in the world. This book was inspired by his posts as 'The Heirloom Gardener - John Forti' which go out regularly to millions on Facebook that value his uniquely curated blend of history, horticulture, environmentalism, and botanical art. His book can be purchased at Andover Bookstore, or from any online supplier. 

The Heirloom Gardener is a book for gardeners who want to engage with nature through pollinators and wildlife in their own backyards. It offers a tapestry of storied plants, artisanal practices, and homestead lifestyles. In its pages, John reminds us that there is always room for an undercurrent when the mainstream gets too big; and empowers readers with a toolkit of traditional and sustainable practices for an emerging artisanal crafts movement, and a brighter future”. Alice Waters, Chef & Owner, Chez Panisse, Founder, The Edible Schoolyard Project

“Rather than dwelling solely in the past, John Forti’s groundbreaking book builds on shared roots to forge a stronger, better, greener tomorrow. Every sentence inspires you to personally become a participant in the evolution. This book is flat out brilliant.”—Tovah Martin, horticulturist and author of The Garden in Every Sense and Season.

The Heirloom Gardener celebrates our inheritance of seeds and soil, and the creative ways gardeners, cooks, farmers, makers, and entrepreneurs are bringing hand-crafted goods to market in meaningful, sustainable ways that are helping to build vibrant new economies, landscapes, and community connections.”—Carlo Petrini, founder, Slow Food International

"I envision author Forti as the legendary Green Man of the Renaissance, draped in vines and tendrils of fresh spring growth. Follow John Forti down the garden pathway to the deepest roots of plant lore, food ways, herbal traditions, and living in green harmony on this fragile earth.”—Sharon Lovejoy, author of Sunflower Houses, Roots Shoots Buckets & Boots.
“In this passionate and personal manifesto, garden historian and ethnobotanist John Forti encourages us to upset the apple cart of mass production and commodification and look back to the many streams of land-based wisdom still available to us in order to find a better way forward.”—Jennifer Jewell, writer/producer/creator of Cultivating Place; author of The Earth in Her Hands

The Heirloom Gardener is for everyone who cares about the health of our planet. Each chapter interweaves delectable morsels about heirloom, native, and indigenous plants with eloquent ramblings on biodiversity, agribusiness, and market economies.”—Julie Moir Messervy, owner of Julie Moir Messervy Design Studio and author of New Landscaping Ideas That Work, and Home Outside

This program is hosted by Memorial Hall Library in partnership with Chelmsford Public Library and Stevens Memorial Library.