‘A poignant, practical and moving story of how to fix our broken land, this should be conservation's salvation; this should be its future; this is a new hope’ - Chris Packham
In Wilding, Isabella Tree tells the story of the ‘Knepp experiment’, a pioneering rewilding project in West Sussex, using free-roaming grazing animals to create new habitats for wildlife. Part gripping memoir, part fascinating account of the ecology of our countryside, Wilding is, above all, an inspiring story of hope.
Forced to accept that intensive farming on the heavy clay of their land at Knepp was economically unsustainable, Isabella Tree and her husband Charlie Burrell made a spectacular leap of faith: they decided to step back and let nature take over. Thanks to the introduction of free-roaming cattle, ponies, pigs and deer – proxies of the large animals that once roamed Britain – the 3,500 acre project has seen extraordinary increases in wildlife numbers and diversity in little over a decade.
Extremely rare species, including turtle doves, nightingales, peregrine falcons, lesser spotted woodpeckers and purple emperor butterflies, are now breeding at Knepp, and populations of other species are rocketing. The Burrells’ degraded agricultural land has become a functioning ecosystem again, heaving with life – all by itself.
Personal and inspirational, Wilding is an astonishing account of the beauty and strength of nature. With 175 five star reviews on Amazon.co.uk and 35,000 copies sold, Wilding was the nature book of 2018 – and is now set to reach a whole new audience in paperback.
Isabella Tree is an award-winning author, travel writer, and manager of the Knepp Wildland Project, together with her husband Charlie. She is the author of several books, including The Living Goddess and The Bird Man.
Available from Picador – 7th March 2019 – Paperback £9.99
‘A narrative of conservation, courage, vision and miracles... The story of what happened is thrilling . . . the Knepp Conservation Project is world-famous: a beacon of hope . . . Read this book and marvel’ Bel Mooney, 'The Year's Best Books on Nature' Daily Mail
‘Particularly timely . . . an excellent primer, and anyone who is interested in how we share the planet ― what it looks like, what we eat, and what nature can teach us ― should read this book’ Sunday Times
‘The remarkable story of an astounding transformation’ George Monbiot
‘Wilding shines brilliantly . . . . Isabella Tree writes [. . .] with infectious enthusiasm . . . The project she writes about so winningly . . . is inspirational – and inspiration is needed’ Evening Standard
‘A hugely important addition to the literature of what can be done to restore soil and soul . . . Tree writes with grace about a legion of doubts, obstructions and delays. The book contains moments of lyricism and revelation’ Caspar Henderson, Guardian
‘Close to my book of the year. If there’s anything better, I haven’t read it yet . . . An uplifting story and points towards a different sort of farmed future’ Marcus Berkmann, 'Best Books for Summer Reading' Daily Mail
‘Every farmer (and perhaps every conservationist) in Britain needs to go and spend a day at Knepp. The Knepp ‘wilding’ project is a vitally important experiment for working out what we can do to let Nature back into our farmed landscapes . . . This book tells this vital story and deserves to be widely read’ James Rebanks, author of A Shepherd’s Life
‘Read Wilding by Isabella Tree . . . Thrilling’ India Knight, The Times
This press release was published by Picador
Press contact: Paul Martinovic