A study of America's vanishing country lifestyle focuses on a family farm, owned by a single family since 1880, near Rochester, Minnesota, capturing the good times, hardships, rituals of rural life, and dramatic changes that have made the farm's existence uncertain
No matter how small your lot is, you can keep chickens and enjoy fresh eggs every morning. Barbara Kilarski shares her passion for poultry as she fills this guide with tips and techniques for successfully raising chickens in small spaces. Spotlighting the self-sufficient pleasures of tending your own flock, Kilarski offers detailed information on everything from choosing breeds that thrive in tight quarters and building coops to providing medical care for sick animals. You'll have fun as you keep happy and productive chickens.
Using recycled materials where ever possible Build It provides step-by-step instructions for over 50 DIY projects for both inside and outside the home farm. Former engineer Joe Jacobs guides you through the equipment, the tools, the materials and the plans to provide you with inspiration and plenty of ideas. The projects include a polytunnel, beehives, chicken arks and runs, gates, hurdles and fencing, cloches, dog kennel, feed bins, a heat pump installation, a heated orphan lamb feeder, incubator, nesting boxes and renewable energy projects including solar panels and plenty more, making this an essential book for any keen DIY enthusiast with a basic knowledge of construction.
Contrasting the prevailing theories of the evolution of agriculture, the author argues that the practice of smallholding is more efficient and less environmentally degrading than that of industrial agriculture which depends heavily on fossil fuel, chemical fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides.
He presents a convincing case for his argument with examples taken from Africa, Asia, Europe and the Americas, and demonstrates that there are fundamental commonalities among smallholder cultures.
"Smallholders, Householders" is a detailed and innovative analysis of the agricultural efficiency and conservation of resources practiced around the world by smallholders.
In recent years beekeepers have had to face tremendous challenges, from pests such as varroa and tracheal mites and from the mysterious but even more devastating phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). Yet in backyards and on rooftops all over the world, bees are being raised successfully, even without antibiotics, miticides, or other chemical inputs.More and more organically minded beekeepers are now using top-bar hives, in which the shape of the interior resembles a hollow log. Long lasting and completely biodegradable, a topbar hive made of untreated wood allows bees to build comb naturally rather than simply filling prefabricated foundation frames in a typical box hive with added supers.
Top-bar hives yield slightly less honey but produce more beeswax than a typical Langstroth box hive. Regular hive inspection and the removal of old combs helps to keep bees healthier and naturally disease-free.
Top-Bar Beekeeping provides complete information on hive management and other aspects of using these innovative hives. All home and hobbyist beekeepers who have the time and interest in keeping bees intensively should consider the natural, low-stress methods outlined in this book. It will also appeal to home orchardists, gardeners, and permaculture practitioners who look to bees for pollination as well as honey or beeswax.
Offering proven techniques and practical advice, this inspiring handbook covers all aspects of successfully running a small organic farm. With expert tips on everything from buying land to creating a niche market for your products, Karl Schwenke shows you how to naturally enrich your soil, acquire necessary equipment, consistently grow abundant crops, and manage farm finances. You'll enjoy learning essential skills like haying and fencing as you turn your organic farming dream into a profitable reality.
As author Gene Logsdon puts it, "We are all tree huggers." But not just for sentimental or even environmental reasons. Humans have always depended on trees for our food, shelter, livelihood, and safety. In many ways, despite the Grimm's fairy-tale version of the dark, menacing forest, most people still hold a deep cultural love of woodland settings, and feel right at home in the woods.
In this latest book, A Sanctuary of Trees, Logsdon offers a loving tribute to the woods, tracing the roots of his own home groves in Ohio back to the Native Americans and revealing his own history and experiences living in many locations, each of which was different, yet inextricably linked with trees and the natural world. Whether as an adolescent studying at a seminary or as a journalist living just outside Philadelphia's city limits, Gene has always lived and worked close to the woods, and his curiosity and keen sense of observation have taught him valuable lessons about a wide variety of trees: their distinct characteristics and the multiple benefits and uses they have.
In addition to imparting many fascinating practical details of woods wisdom, A Sanctuary of Trees is infused with a philosophy and descriptive lyricism that is born from the author's passionate and lifelong relationship with nature: There is a point at which the tree shudders before it begins its descent. Then slowly it tips, picks up speed, often with a kind of wailing death cry from rending wood fibers, and hits the ground with a whump that literally shakes the earth underfoot. The air, in the aftermath, seems to shimmy and shiver, as if saturated with static electricity. Then follows an eerie silence, the absolute end to a very long life.
Fitting squarely into the long and proud tradition of American nature writing, A Sanctuary of Trees also reflects Gene Logsdon's unique personality and perspective, which have marked him over the course of his two dozen previous books as the authentic voice of rural life and traditions.
In this intimate portrait of an island lobstering community and an eccentric band of renegade biologists, journalist Trevor Corson escorts students onto the slippery decks of fishing boats, through danger-filled scuba dives, and deep into the churning currents of the Gulf of Maine to learn about the secret undersea lives of lobsters. In revelations from the laboratory and the sea that are by turns astonishing and humorous, the lobster proves itself to be not only a delicious meal and a sustainable resource, but also an amorous master of the boudoir, a lethal boxer, and a snoopy socializer with a nose that lets it track prey and paramour alike with the skill of a bloodhound. The Secret Life of Lobsters is a rollicking oceanic odyssey punctuated by salt spray, melted butter, and predators lurking in the murky depths."Lobster is served three ways in this fascinating book: by fisherman, scientist and the crustaceans themselves. . . . Corson, who worked aboard commercial lobster boats for two years, weaves together these three worlds. The human worlds are surely interesting; but they can't top the lobster life on the ocean floor."-Washington Post--Kirkus Reviews