Posted by: lornasass | May 14, 2009


Close to 20 years ago, while I was researching RECIPES FROM AN ECOLOGICAL KITCHEN (now titled LORNA SASS’ COMPLETE VEGETARIAN KITCHEN),  I visited Rosalind Creasy at her home in Silicon Valley.  My longtime friend and colleague, produce specialist Elizabeth Schneider, author of the extraordinary reference cookbook VEGETABLES FROM AMARANTH TO ZUCCHINI, made the introduction.

Creasy with one of her "girls."

Creasy with one of her "girls."

We are talking about the early 90s and Rosalind Creasy was annoying her suburban neighbors by planting corn, zucchini, cabbage, and other edibles on her front lawn.  In fact, her vegetable garden was her front lawn!  Since that time she has gone on to write many books about variously themed edible gardens: French, herbal, Mexican, and salad greens, among others.  She has also written a number of fine cookbooks about cooking with garden produce.

I went to hear Creasy lecture on the subject of edible gardens at Burpee’s lovely Fordhook Farm, which was part of the The Garden Conservancy’s program of opening private gardens around the country to the public of one or two days per year.  (I joined the Garden Conservancy about 3 months ago and have been to six magnificent private gardens so far.  If you love gardens and gardening, join!  You won’t regret it.)

At Burpee’s, Creasy was as feisty as ever, promoting the idea of edible gardens over chemical- and water-guzzling lawns.   She understood the value of  sustainability long before most people had ever heard or thought of the notion.  She is also a very talented photographer and showed slides of her various gardens.  She does two differently themed gardens each year and then writes a book about how to do so yourself.

Here is one of Creasy’s photographs, taken from her highly informative web site You will see at a glance that an edible garden can be every bit as beautiful as a non-edible one.

Rosalind Creasy's Backyard Herb Garden

Rosalind Creasy's Backyard Herb Garden



  1. Rosalind is pictured with her prized rooster – Mr. X!

    • Thank you for setting this city girl straight! Lorna

  2. I’m so glad to find that you have a blog. Your bio says you are ahead of your time and that is absolutely true… Years ago I discovered your books on pressure cooking and had a terrific time experimenting. Need to get a couple of copies for myself (they were borrowed, need my own!)

    I also love your pictures of natural life in New York City; reminds me of my life there 15-20 years ago when I spent time in Central and Prospect Parks, birdwatching and exploring the gardens.

    • So glad you are enjoying the blog. TX for taking the time to write. The 20th Anniversary edition of Cooking Under Pressure will be out next October, can you believe?

  3. I’m delighted to see this entry about Ros Creasy, who is one of America’s great gardeners. She is currently working on all new edition of The Complete Guide to Edible Landscaping. The first edition of this book paved the way for all the rest of us to say food gardens are beautiful.

    • And I’m delighted to know about the forthcoming book. Tx so much for taking the time to let me know. Lorna

  4. Wonderful blog, and lovely photos! I’ve really enjoyed visiting. : )

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