Much better than expected! I'm a crazy prepper in the process of making a productive garden and I absolutely recommend this book, it covers an amazing range of subjects, although it was not written for the prepper community as most the recipies involve using electric devices. There are lots of little sections which make it a great all round book, like seed saving, starting veg from seed, preserving, threshing, very practical advice on the layout of patches in your garden, excellent charts for reference, fruit tree pruning, the list goes on. I haven't read the section on chickens/other animals as we have such a small patch and so many stray cats and foxes living very close by, we cannot even entertain the idea of keeping animals. A lot of the recipies assume you have the eggs, which we will not have, so maybe find some flat bread recipies on the internet to print out as a supplement to this book, and also some information about cooking with fire as this book assumes you have an oven.
This book is wll worth the price, I saw it reviewed in "kitchen gardn" magazine and it has lived up to all my expectations. The chapters are sort to the point with all the basics. Everything to get you started and for the more experienced. I have bottled fruit taught by my mother but, I now have the science which should explain a few failures over the years.
This is a great book for anyone who is considering broadening their horizons and making their garden more productive. It takes the prospective homesteader through all aspects of self-sufficiency, including the obvious fruit and veg, poultry and herbs, whilst also including the less common aspects of nuts, meat and dairy, grain production, and food from the wild. Not only does this book tell you how to establish a garden, and how to grow your produce, it also gives detailed advice on preserving, processing, cooking and distillation. While this may seem like too much for one volume to cover well, the writing style is easy to read, simple to understand, and inspires the reader to get out and get gardening! Calculations are given for expected yields, crop rotation, planting dates and seed collection. In fact, it's a book that has everything you need to feed yourself and your family. It is so accessible and interesting that even if you're not going to get off the sofa and into the garden, it's a good read. I hope it inspires us all to grow a bit more, and make our own spaces work for us.
Our household suffers from an overload of books about fruit and veg gardening, each of which tells you a little bit about what you want to know...and alot about what you don't want to know. Now we can throw them all out (and also the ones about hens and preserving) because it is all in this really great book.
It is packed with pratical advice that guides you through planning to planting, growing, harvesting and storing. It doesn't assume vast tracts of land, so even those with modest gardens (or a balcony) can achieve alot. The charming ink illustrations and the lovely, non-glossy, paper, typify the down-to-earth enthusiasm of the author which is impossible to resist.
It is a book to read with a notebook at hand, in the winter months when planning, as much as to keep near you in the garden when the weather warms up and the hard work starts.
This is an American book that has been Anglicised surprisingly badly considering it is edited by a Brit.
Dont get me wrong it is comprehensive if you want ideas but not solutions. Everything is covered from Veg through to rearing a Cow - but its more a dictionary than an instruction manual - a paragraph per idea.
For those who deal in metric you are given a table at the end of the book I suggest you bookmark it because its all quarts and gallons.
I loved this book. The author's experiential, " been there and got the T shirt" approach, is fascinating but not prescriptive. She is to self sufficiency what Nigel Slater is to good food. My only problem will be where to store the book, the ideal would be a copy in the garden shed and one next to my bed.
This is such a lovely inspiring book for anyone that dreams of having a smallholding, or of self sufficiency, but can only manage a bit of productive land in the back garden. Wonderful practical can do tips.
I purchased this book just a few days ago hoping it would be a great companion for my copy of "The Backyard Homestead: Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre!" - it certainly is, because it's the same book, just with a different title. We'll give this copy to a friend of ours. Caveat emptor just to make sure you don't already have a copy under a different name.
Not as good as Brett Markham's mini farming overall but nearly as good and for those of us in the British Isles probably just as useful as we don't have a New England climate. (Although the UK climate is quite close to that of New England). The presentaion style I liked and although I did n't feel the writer had Brett markham's depth of knowledge and experience it was well written , pretty competent.and as good as anything I've read on mini farming in the UK. The usual problem was found in that it appeared to be mainly written for gardeners/minifarmers in the S. of England and for those of us in Scotland some extrapolation had to be done in terms of planting times etc. and in as far as what can be successfully grown.