- Recommended Products
With just a quarter acre of land, you can feed a family of four with fresh, organic food year-round. The Backyard Homestead is a comprehensive guide to self-sufficiency that gives you all the information you need to grow and preserve a variety of vegetables, fruits, herbs, nuts, and grains; keep chickens for eggs and meat; raise cows, sheep, and goats for meat or milk; raise pigs and rabbits; and keep honeybees. Simple instructions make it easy to enjoy canned, frozen, dried, and pickled produce all winter; use your own grains to make bread, pasta, and beer; turn fresh milk into delicious homemade yogurt, butter, and cheese; make your own wine, cordials, and herbal teas; and much more. It truly is possible to eat entirely from your backyard. Want a companion planner book, too? The Backyard Homestead Seasonal Planner offers expert advice on what tasks to do around your farm and when to do them — no matter where on the planet you call home. Author Ann Larkin Hansen sets the priorities for each area of the farm, including the barn, garden, orchard, field, pasture, and woodlot. For every critical turn of the year (12 in all), Hansen provides an at-a-glance to-do list along with tips and a more in-depth discussion of key topics for the season. Easy-reference charts, checklists, and record-keeping sections help you keep track of it all.
Be Your Own Herbalist distills that knowledge and experience to offer readers all the information they need to make use of herbs at home in safe and effective ways. Cook profiles 31 common and readily available herbs, sharing scientific discoveries about their usefulness and offering practical (and often fun) ways of incorporating these “Mother Nature Medicines” back into daily life, where they belong.
Get an up-close look at the buzzing, fluttering, and squirming life teeming in your garden. Bees, Bugs & Butterflies explores the world of pollinators: the bugs that help plants thrive. Discover ways to attract the fascinating creatures that pollinate your fruits and vegetables, control pests and diseases, and even get rid of your organic trash. Learn how to create an environment friendly to butterflies, bees, ants, and bats; build habitats for garden allies like ladybugs and lacewings; and gain an appreciation for the complex food web right outside your door.
Few insects are more important than bees, wasps, and ants. They maintain the garden’s biological balance, fertilize vegetables, fruits, and flowers, and recycle nutrients within the soil. It’s no exaggeration to say that a garden can’t be understood without an understanding of its insects. Bees, Wasps, and Ants explores the importance of the Hymenoptera and explains how gardeners can encourage (or discourage) them in the garden. Part One includes a summary of their biology and a tour of what role they play in each part of the garden. Part Two takes a closer look at the individual groups within the family, including sawflies, horntails, woodwasps, parasitic wasps, predatory wasps, bees, and ants.
Beyond the War on Invasive Species offers a much-needed alternative perspective on invasive species and the best practices for their management based on a holistic, permaculture-inspired framework. Utilizing the latest research and thinking on the changing nature of ecological systems, this book closely examines the factors that are largely missing from the common conceptions of invasive species, including how the colliding effects of climate change, habitat destruction, and changes in land use and management contribute to their proliferation.
If you’ve ever looked at the weed-filled expanse that passes for your backyard and wondered why your family never uses it, this book is for you. Sara Bendrick addresses the most common homeowner requests for affordable ways to bring privacy, shade, dining areas, fire features, and manageable plantings into their yards to increase their enjoyment of outdoor spaces and increase the value of their home.
Bioshelter Market Garden: A Permaculture Farm describes the creation of a sustainable food system through a detailed case study of the successful year-round organic market garden and permaculture design at Pennsylvania’s Three Sisters Farm.
Win the blue ribbon every time! Master Gardener Jodi Torpey offers all the information you need to grow champion vegetables: beans, beets, cabbages, cucumbers, eggplants, onions, peppers, pumpkins, squash, and tomatoes. She covers everything from choosing the right varieties and scheduling planting dates to harvesting, preparing, and transporting your produce. She also walks you through every aspect of competitive showing, with useful tips for thinking like a judge. This book will delight you with lively photos of mammoth pumpkins, truly gigantic onions, perfectly pear-shaped eggplants, and the farmers and gardeners who grow them. Filled with the excitement of a county fair, it’s a fun read as well as a solid guide to growing the biggest, tastiest, best-looking vegetables for miles around.
Herbalist Maria Noël Groves shows you how to read your body’s signals and support your own wellness with herbal remedies and other natural treatments. You’ll learn how each of your major body systems — respiratory, digestive, immune, nervous, memory, reproductive, circulatory, and more — optimally functions, and you’ll discover how to use natural remedies to nourish and repair problem areas, restore lost vitality, support your body as a whole, and prevent future problems.
All gardeners and farmers should be plant breeders, says author Carol Deppe. Developing new vegetable varieties doesn't require a specialized education, a lot of land, or even a lot of time. It can be done on any scale. It's enjoyable. It's deeply rewarding. You can get useful new varieties much faster than you might suppose. And you can eat your mistakes.
This is your down-to-earth, complete manual for achieving great gardening results with your own rich, organic soil!
How do you recognize healthy soil? How much can your existing soil be improved? What are the best amendments to use for your soil? Let Building Soil answer your questions and be your guide on gardening from the ground up! Fertilizing, tilling, weed management and irrigation all affect the quality of your soil. Using author Elizabeth Murphy's detailed instructions, anyone can become a successful soil-based gardener, whether you want to start a garden from scratch or improve an existing one.
If you want methods that won't break your back, are good for the environment, and create high-yielding and beautiful gardens of all shapes and sizes, this is the book for you! Create classic landscape gardens, grow a high-yielding orchard, nurture naturally beautiful lawns, raise your household veggies, or run a profitable farm. A soil-based approach allows you to see not just the plants, but the living system that grows them. Soil-building practices promote more ecologically friendly gardening by reducing fertilizer and pesticide use, sequestering greenhouse gases, and increasing overall garden productivity.
Building Soil is a simple book full of practical, up-to-date information about building healthy soils. Simple methods perfect for the home gardener's use put healthy, organic soil within everyone's reach. You don't need a degree in soil management to understand this book; you only need a yard or garden and the desire to improve it at the most basic level.
In an organic garden, plants in optimum health thrive abundantly, produce harvests with amazing taste, and possess the ability to fight off plant predators. When they don't, there's often something lacking in their proper nutrition. Maybe they are missing beneficial microorganism companions, or perhaps they are short of the energy needed to reach their full nutrient-dense potential. The solution is to "start with the soil," but healthy soil doesn't happen just by composting, fertilizing or companion planting alone. The solution can be found in Building Soils Naturally, which gives gardeners a hands-on plan for creating productive, living soil by using a practical, holistic approach - crafted right in your garden.