Read our author interview with Dave Goulson on our blog.
The Garden Jungle is about the wildlife that lives right under our noses, in our gardens and parks, between the gaps in the pavement, and in the soil beneath our feet. Wherever you are right now, the chances are that there are worms, woodlice, centipedes, flies, silverfish, wasps, beetles, mice, shrews and much, much more, quietly living within just a few paces of you.
Dave Goulson gives us an insight into the fascinating and sometimes weird lives of these creatures, taking us burrowing into the compost heap, digging under the lawn and diving into the garden pond. He explains how our lives and ultimately the fate of humankind are inextricably intertwined with that of earwigs, bees, lacewings and hoverflies, unappreciated heroes of the natural world.
The Garden Jungle is at times an immensely serious book, exploring the environmental harm inadvertently done by gardeners who buy intensively reared plants in disposable plastic pots, sprayed with pesticides and grown in peat cut from the ground. Goulson argues that gardens could become places where we can reconnect with nature and rediscover where food comes from. With just a few small changes, our gardens could become a vast network of tiny nature reserves, where humans and wildlife can thrive together in harmony rather than conflict.
For anyone who has a garden, and cares about our planet, The Garden Jungle is essential reading.
Dave Goulson studied biology at Oxford University and is now Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of Sussex. He has spent the last twenty years studying bumblebees, and has published over 250 scientific articles on their biology. He founded the Bumblebee Conservation Trust in 2006. He is the author of the Sunday Times bestseller, A Sting in the Tale, which was shortlisted for the 2013 Samuel Johnson Prize, A Buzz in the Meadow and Bee Quest.
"Exquisite [...] should be read by every gardener in the country"
"[Goulson] is master of intriguing details of a world beyond our ken [...] The Garden Jungle is an eye-opening book [...] [and Goulson's] enthusiasm is infectious. This is a man you'd just love to visit your garden and show you its invisible wonders, teach you how to nurture them."
– The Times
"This book will teach you a great deal about the creatures who live right outside your door and are waiting for you to get to know them. It is a constant revelation."
– Sunday Times
"Like a top-notch wildlife documentary, The Garden Jungle draws us in with fascinating details of the natural world and, at the same time, delivers a wake-up call [...] I doubt that many will finish reading this important book without making a few changes to their gardening or way of life."
– Church Times
"An upbeat book about the wonders of the ecosystem in every garden."
– The Times, summer reads of 2019
"Woodlice, earthworms, earwigs: a seething Serengeti lurks in many a back garden. Apiologist Dave Goulson's wonderful book encourages such richness by delivering solid science on garden wilding [...] Goulson demonstrates that the domestic nature reserve is the first step towards saving the planet."
"[...] Goulson's colourful anecdotes make this book an easy read but, while he is optimistic and cheerful throughout, his frustration at large-scale food production and agrochemical companies is also clear. The Garden Jungle will inspire people who have a garden to tend it for wildlife, and will make those who don't have a garden want one more than ever!"
– Dr Harty Siviter, The Biologist 66(6), December 2019
"[...] a seething Serengeti lurks in many a back garden. Apiologist Dave Goulson's wonderful book encourages such richness by delivering solid science on garden wilding. [...]"
– Barbara Kiser, Nature 571(7765), July 2019