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Books: “The Tulip” By Anna Pavord

Books: “The Tulip” By Anna Pavord

“I suppose there must be one or two people in the world who choose to not like tulips, but such an aberration is scarcely credible.” – Anna Pavord The Tulip: The Story of a Flower that has Made Men Mad – By Anna Pavord, 1999. The allure of the tulip is well known. One of the earliest and the most impressive of the Spring bulbs, tulips have been planted the world over in home gardens, palaces, and magnificent public parks. Tulips are beloved…

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Books: Robbing the Bees

Books: Robbing the Bees

“Ace handed me a plastic bear full of his most recent harvest, and when I tilted it to my mouth, head back, eyes closed, I really experienced honey for the first time, standing next to its creators. In that glistening dollop, I could taste the sun and the water in his pond, the metallic minerals of his soil, and the tang of the goldenrod and wildflowers blooming around his meadow. The present golden-green moment was sweetly and perfectly distilled in…

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Books: Farming for Self-Sufficiency

Books: Farming for Self-Sufficiency

“Now, the sort of self-sufficiency which I wish to treat in this book is not the old, pre-industrial self-sufficiency: that of the illiterate peasant or hunter who has never heard of anything else. That kind of self-sufficiency is, for better or worse, on the way out. What I am interested in is the post-industrial self-sufficiency: that of the person who has gone through the big-city-industrial way of life and who has advanced beyond it and wants to go on to something…

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Books: The Owner-Built Homestead

Books: The Owner-Built Homestead

“Reduced to its simplest terms, a homestead is an ecosystem in which humans evolve in mutual association and coexistence with plants, animals, and other life forces. In this cohabitation the various components of the homestead germinate, develop, and mature at varying rates for varying purposes, all interdependent and individually supportive of life therein.” – Barbara and Ken Kern, The Owner-Built Homestead.  The Owner-Built Homestead, Barbara and Ken Kern, 1977 (Second Edition). The Owner-Built Homestead is a classic text on neo-homesteading…

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Books: Farmers of Forty Centuries

Books: Farmers of Forty Centuries

“The great movement of cargoes of feeding stuffs and mineral fertilizers to western Europe and to the eastern United States began less than a century ago and has never been possible as a means of maintaining soil fertility in China, Korea, or Japan, nor can it be continued indefinitely in either Europe or America. These importations are for the time making tolerable the waste of plant food materials through our modern system of sewage disposal and other faulty practices; but…

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John Seymour on Sport Fishing

John Seymour on Sport Fishing

I often think of this characteristically amusing John Seymour quote from the section “Fish” of his wonderful book, “Farming for Self-Sufficiency” “The industrial working man’s sport of catching fish out of the fresh water canals, lakes and streams, weighing them, and throwing them back again, is as puerile as pulling wings off flies, but I suppose it is better than watching hired men playing football, for at least it gets its devotees away from a crowd. The men who do…

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