Around the world, everyone is talking about environmental issues and the concept of “going green.” Natural organic gardening and landscaping are among the most important parts of that movement. Some organic proponents only say to stop using the chemicals. Howard Garrett, in the Organic Manual, explains in detail what to do instead. His “what to do” is the organic method. The book opens with the advice to stop the use of toxic chemicals, pesticides, and synthetic fertilizers, but Garrett then goes on, in great detail, about the practical alternatives. This is one of the few books effective for use coast to coast and border to border. The organic method has no geographic boundaries.
The best kept secret of all (uncovered in this book) is that the organic program is better in every way. Whether it’s growing beautiful landscaping or delicious, healthy food crops, the Organic Manual explains bed preparation, planting, pest control, and compost making. It also covers natural living advice. The organic method is the most efficient, most cost effective, and most fun of any approach. It also produces the best trees, shrubs, flowers, fruits, and vegetables that you’ll ever grow.
The Organic Seed Grower is a comprehensive manual for the serious vegetable grower who is interested in growing high-quality seeds using organic farming practices. It is written for both home seed savers and diversified small-scale farmers who want to learn the necessary steps involved in successfully producing a commercial seed crop organically.
Detailed profiles for each of the major vegetables provide users with practical, in-depth knowledge about growing, harvesting and processing seed for a wide range of common and specialty vegetable crops, from Asian greens to zucchini.
In addition, readers will find extensive and critical information on topics including: o The reproductive biology of crop plants o Annual vs. biennial seed crops o Isolation distances needed to ensure varietal purity o Maintaining adequate population size for genetic integrity o Seed crop climates o Seed-borne diseases o Seed cleaning basics o Seed storage for farmers o And more ...
This book can serve as a bridge to lead skilled gardeners, who are already saving their own seed, into the idea of growing seed commercially. And for diversified vegetable farmers who are growing a seed crop for sale for the first time, it will provide details on many of the tricks of the trade that are used by professional seed growers. This manual will help the budding seed farmer become more knowledgeable, efficient and effective in producing a commercially viable seed crop.
With the strong demand for certified organic produce, many regional seed companies are increasingly seeking out dedicated seed growers to ensure a reliable source of organically grown seeds for their farmer and gardener customers. This trend represents a great business opportunity for small-scale commercial growers who wish to raise and sell vegetable seeds as a profitable part of their diversified small-farm operation. Written by well-known plant breeder and organic seed expert John Navazio, The Organic Seed Grower is the most up-to-date and useful guide to best practices in this exciting and important field.
Permaculture is more than just the latest buzzword; it offers positive solutions for many of the environmental and social challenges confronting us. And nowhere are those remedies more needed and desired than in our cities. The Permaculture City provides a new way of thinking about urban living, with practical examples for creating abundant food, energy security, close-knit communities, local and meaningful livelihoods, and sustainable policies in our cities and towns. The same nature-based approach that works so beautifully for growing food—connecting the pieces of the landscape together in harmonious ways—applies perfectly to many of our other needs. Toby Hemenway, one of the leading practitioners and teachers of permaculture design, illuminates a new way forward through examples of edge-pushing innovations, along with a deeply holistic conceptual framework for our cities, towns and suburbs.
The Permaculture City begins in the garden but takes what we have learned there and applies it to a much broader range of human experience; we’re not just gardening plants but people, neighborhoods and even cultures. Hemenway lays out how permaculture design can help town dwellers solve the challenges of meeting our needs for food, water, shelter, energy, community and livelihood in sustainable, resilient ways. Readers will find new information on designing the urban home garden and strategies for gardening in community, rethinking our water and energy systems, learning the difference between a “job” and a “livelihood,” and the importance of placemaking and an empowered community.
This important book documents the rise of a new sophistication, depth and diversity in the approaches and thinking of permaculture designers and practitioners. Understanding nature can do more than improve how we grow, make or consume things; it can also teach us how to cooperate, make decisions and arrive at good solutions.
Filled with advice for the home gardener and the more seasoned horticulturist alike, The Seed Garden: The Art and Practice of Seed Saving provides straightforward instruction on collecting seed that is true-to-type and ready for sowing in next year’s garden. In this comprehensive book, Seed Savers Exchange, one of the foremost American authorities on the subject, and the Organic Seed Alliance bring together decades of knowledge to demystify the time-honored tradition of saving the seed of more than seventy-five coveted vegetable and herb crops—from heirloom tomatoes and long-favored varieties of beans, lettuces, and cabbages to centuries-old varieties of peppers and grains.
With clear instructions, lush photographs, and easy-to-comprehend profiles on individual vegetable crops, this book not only teaches us how to go about conserving these important varieties for future generations and for planting out in next year’s garden, it also provides a deeper understanding of the importance of saving these genetically valuable varieties of vegetables that have evolved over the centuries through careful selection by farmers and home gardeners.
Through simple lessons and master classes on crop selection, pollination, roguing, and the processes of harvesting and storing seeds, this book ensures that these time-honored traditions can continue. Many of these vegetable varieties are treasured for traits that are singular to their strain, whether that is a resistance to disease, an ability to grow well in a region for which that crop is not typically well suited, resistance to early bolting, or simply because it is a great-tasting variety. In an age of genetically modified crops and hybrid seed, a growing appreciation for saving seeds of these time-tested, open-pollinated cultivars has found a new audience from home vegetable gardeners and cooks to restaurant chefs and local farmers.
Whether interested in simply saving seeds for home use or working to conserve rare varieties of beloved squashes and tomatoes, this book provides a deeper understanding of the art, the science, and the joy of saving seeds.
The Tao of Vegetable Gardening explores the practical methods as well as the deeper essence of gardening. In her latest book, groundbreaking garden writer Carol Deppe focuses on some of the most popular home garden vegetables—tomatoes, green beans, peas and leafy greens—and through them illustrates the key principles and practices that gardeners need to know to successfully plant and grow just about any food crop.
The book begins with a personality test for your soil, then uses that information to plan a course of action for revitalizing poor soil and turning good dirt into great earth. Next, you’ll learn to start and maintain a no-till garden, to balance nutrients with remineralization, and to boost organic matter with easy cover crops
Turning waste into wealth sounds too good to be true, but many worm farmers are finding that vermicomposting is a reliable way to do just that. Vermicast—a biologically active, nutrient-rich mix of earthworm castings and decomposed organic matter—sells for $400 or more per cubic yard. Compare that to regular compost, sold at about $30 a cubic yard, and you’ll see why vermicomposting has taken root in most countries and on every continent but Antarctica.
Vermicomposting is also one of the best sustainable solutions for organic waste management. Vermicomposting manure and crop wastes on farms improves crop yields while reducing demand for off-farm inputs. Vermicast has higher nutrient levels and lower soluble salt content than regular compost, and it improves soil aeration, porosity, and water retention. Plus, vermicast suppresses plant diseases and insect attacks. Municipalities, businesses, community gardens, schools, and universities can set up vermicomposting operations to process food residuals and other waste materials.
In today's downturned economy, one sector is trending sharply up: backyard vegetable gardening. Americans are staying closer to home, literally tending to their gardens by the millions. And they're reaching out for help and advice. Doug Oster, popular radio talk show gardening expert (and newspaper garden and food columnist), gets more questions about tomatoes than any other vegetable. No. 2 is garlic, with basil close behind. It's time for a book about these favorites of the American kitchen, created for beginners and old-timers alike. With color photos throughout, this book is a balance of easy-to-use organic gardening tips, a little horticultural history, serious and funny cautionary gardening tales … and 30 simply delicious recipes (the gastronomic payoff). No matter if a garden is a loft balcony or a backyard in the 'burbs, Oster leads his readers step by step with his trademark "how I do it" humor and Julia Child honesty … with a bonus prize of all those recipes as a reward for readers' labors.
Understanding Roots uncovers one of the greatest mysteries underground: the secret lives and magical workings of the roots that move and grow invisibly beneath our feet.
Roots do more than just keep a plant from falling over: They gather water and nutrients, exude wondrous elixirs to create good soil, make friends with microbes and fungi, communicate with other roots, and adapt themselves to all manner of soils, winds and climates, nourishing and sustaining our gardens, lawns and woodlands.
Understanding Roots contains more than 115 enchanting and revealing root drawings that most people have never seen, from prairies, grasslands and deserts, as well as drawings based on excavations of vegetable, fruit, nut and ornamental tree roots. Every root system presented in this book was drawn by people literally working in the trenches, sketching the roots where they grew.
The text provides a detailed review of all aspects of transplanting; describes how roots work their magic to improve soil nutrients; investigates the hidden life of soil microbes and their mysterious relationship to roots; explores the question of whether deep roots really gather more unique nutrients than shallow roots; shares the latest research about the mysteries of mycorrhizal (good fungal) association; shows you exactly where to put your fertilizer, compost, water and mulch to help plants flourish; tells you why greywater increases crop yields more than fresh water; and reveals the science behind all of the above (with citations for each scientific paper).
This book contains at least 80 percent more new information, more results of the latest in-depth and up-to-date explorations, and even more helpful guidelines on roots than the author’s previous book (Roots Demystified: Change Your Garden Habits to Help Roots Thrive). This is not a revised edition—it’s a whole new stand-alone book.
Fight garden pests and increase your yields the natural way with this tried and true technique!
Planting vegetables and flowers together is one of the oldest ways to create a healthy, bountiful garden, but there's more to the method than you might think. Vegetables Love Flowers will walk you through the ins and outs of companion planting, from how it works to which plants go together and how to grow the best garden for your climate.
With the right information and some careful planning, you can help your plants thrive--and beautify your garden in the process.
Learn how to transform an ordinary backyard garden into a true showpiece. Originally published in 1924, Peter Bisset shares with readers timeless advice and tips for creating a variety of water gardens. After experiencing one, it’s easy to see why these gardens hold such appeal; these splashing fountains and ponds make hot days seem cooler, and they also attract birds and butterflies to your backyard. Even tiny tabletop fountains offer soothing sounds to drown out a busy street or a noisy neighbor.
The Water Gardening Idea Book gives in full detail all the practical information necessary for the selection, grouping, and successful cultivation of aquatic and other plants required in the making of a water garden and its surroundings. It’s perfect for both amateurs and those with green thumbs looking to take their gardens to the next level. Readers will enjoy projects of varying difficulty, starting with simple container gardens and advancing to large estate or park fountains and ponds. Whether you’re interested in creating a casual pond or a formal fountain, with The Water Gardening Idea Book, you’ll be able to create them with confidence.
It's the question most commonly heard in every garden: What's wrong with my…? And with the best-selling What's Wrong With My Plant? and What's Wrong With My Vegetable Garden?, David Deardorff and Kathryn Wadsworth answered it for flower borders, perennial gardens and vegetable beds. What's next? One of the most challenging parts of the garden-the delicious yet disease-prone fruit garden.
What's Wrong With My Fruit Garden? offers a path toward a healthy garden packed with fresh fruit. In addition to learning how to diagnose a plant problem through clear visual keys, you will also learn the most effective organic solutions for every problem. Detailed plant portraits include information on growth; seasonality; temperature, light and soil requirements; and planting techniques. The 37 plants include everything from almonds to watermelons.
This book is a must-have guide for any food gardener looking to grow scrumptious and problem-free fruit!