Author, book editor, and journalist, Zia Allaway is a qualified horticulturist and has written a range of gardening books for the RHS and DK, including The Complete Gardener's Manual, The Encyclopedia of Plants and Flowers, How to Grow Practically Everything, and Growing Vegetables: 101 Essential Tips. She has also edited The Encyclopedia of Garden Design and the RHS Simple Steps series. Zia writes a monthly column on garden design for Homes & Gardens Magazine, and is a contributor to the Garden Design Journal. She runs a consultancy service from her home in Hertfordshire and offers practical workshops for beginners. She has a small wildlife garden which she opens to the public through the UK charity, The National Gardens Scheme.