Archive for August, 2012


Introducing New Titles from our UK Partners!

Thursday, August 16th, 2012

Chelsea Green isn’t the only publisher on the planet with a focus on sustainability. Two of our key partners in bringing books on green living into the world are in the United Kingdom: Green Books and Permanent Publications.

We distribute many Green Books and Permanent Publications titles here in the United States — and Green Books does the same for many of our books in the UK.

So without further ado, here are the latest offerings from across the pond. Enjoy!

New From Green Books

Future Money: Breakdown or Breakthrough? by James Robertson

Future Money explains in plain language and convincing detail how money is now working to propel us toward the self-destruction of our species – and what we should do about it. Of course, money is not itself the problem, but in the way it works at present, it affects us as a diseased blood or brain system affects a living person.

$23.95 – Paperback

 

 

How to Grow Perennial Vegetables: Low-Maintenance, Low-Impact Vegetable Gardening by Martin Crawford

Perennial vegetables are a joy to grow and require a lot less time and effort than annuals. In this book Martin Crawford gives comprehensive advice on all types of perennial vegetable (edible plants that live longer than three years), from ground-cover plants and coppiced trees to plants for bog gardens and edible woodland plants.

$26.95 – Paperback – Full Color

 

Convergence with Nature: A Daoist Perspective by David Cooper

In this book David E. Cooper explores our relationship to nature – to animals, to plants, to natural places – and asks how it can be shaped into an appropriate one which contributes to the good of people’s lives as a whole. Religions and philosophies have much to say about our relationship with nature, and Chinese Daoist philosophy has long been regarded as among those most sympathetic to the natural world.

$19.95 – Paperback

 

 

The Weeder’s Digest: Identifying and Enjoying Edible Weeds by Gail Harland

A practical, attractive guide to identifying and using many edible weeds. Provides details on over 45 species, with advice on how to identify and use them in the kitchen, as well as tips for non-culinary uses. It includes both common weeds, such as nettles, dandelions, and chickweed, and less common ones, such as brooklime and pineappleweed. Advice is also given on avoiding toxic plants.

$17.95 – Paperback – Full Color

Weeds? If you Can’t Beat them, Eat them! – Daily Mail Book Review

 

The Fruit Tree Handbook by Ben Pike

The Fruit Tree Handbook is a clear, practical guide that will help both amateur and expert to grow delicious fruit, from apples to mulberries and plums to peaches. Simple instructions guide you through soil preparation, choosing the best varieties and planting your trees successfully, while the mysteries of pollination and pruning are unraveled with the help of diagrams and photographs.

$29.95 – Paperback – Full Color

 

 

 

New From Permanent Publications

People and Permaculture: Caring & Designing for Ourselves, Each Other & The Planet by Looby Macnamara

People & Permaculture widens the definition of permaculture from being mainly about land-based systems to include our own lives,relationships and society. This book provides a framework to help each of us improve our ability to care for ourselves, our friends, families and for the Earth. It is also a clear guide for those who may be new to permaculture, who may not even have a garden, but who wish to be involved in making changes to their lives and living more creative, low carbon lives. People & Permaculture transforms the context of permaculture making it relevant to everyone.

$34.95 – Paperback

 

Permaculture Design: A Step-by-Step Guideby Aranya

In this unique, full color guide, experienced permaculture teacher Aranya leads you through the design process from beginning to end, using clear explanations, flowcharts and diagrams. It is based on course worksheets which have been designed, refined and tested on students over time. Linking theory to practice, he places the ethics, principles, philosophies, tools and techniques directly into the context of the process itself. While written for anyone with a basic grasp of permaculture, this book also has plenty to offer the more experienced designer. 
$24.95 – Paperback – Full Color

 

 

Celebrate National Honeybee Day!

Tuesday, August 14th, 2012

The humble honeybee does so much for us. Bees pollinate plants we depend upon for food like apples, tomatoes, zucchini — lots of crops need the gentle nuzzle of a bee or butterfly to get from pretty flower to juicy fruit. And of course they make honey — a food we’ve turned to for thousands of years to make our lives a little sweeter.

Honeybees and other bees have been in trouble in recent years. You might have heard mention of Colony Collapse Disorder. Is it a disease, is it caused by cell phone towers? Nobody really knows the cause for the massive drop off in bee populations, but we all know it’s bad news.

National Honeybee Day is August 18th, so this week we’re celebrating the honeybee by putting a few of our bee books on sale for 25% off. If you’ve been thinking about starting a hive of your own, this is a great opportunity to learn from the masters at a great price.

Top-Bar Beekeeping: Organic Practices for Honeybee Health by Les Crowder and Heather Harrell

Top-Bar Beekeeping provides complete information on hive management and other aspects of using innovative top-bar hives that mimic the shape of a hollow log. All home and hobbyist beekeepers who have the time and interest in keeping bees 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.

Listen to Bee Mentor’s interview with Les Crowder.

Natural Beekeeping: Organic Approaches to Modern Apiculture by Ross Conrad

Natural Beekeeping describes opportunities for the seasoned professional to modify existing operations, increase profits, and eliminate the use of chemical treatments. Beginners will need no other book to guide them. Whether you are an experienced apiculturist looking for ideas to develop an integrated pest management approach or someone who wants to sell honey at a premium price, this is the book you’ve been waiting for.

Start anew: become a honey farmer! Read this excerpt from Natural Beekeeping to learn more.

Pre-Release Special: Home Baked

Monday, August 13th, 2012

On a small island off the coast of Denmark, Hanne Risgaard and her family grow organic grains — wheat, spelt, rye — stone-grind them, and bake beautiful breads, pies, cookies, and more. The farm is called Skaertoft Molle (translation: Cut-Road Mill), and the family has won awards for their healthful and delicious grains.

Now you too can create wonderful breads from the simple recipes in Risgaard’s book, Home Baked: Nordic Recipes and Techniques for Organic Bread and Pastry. The book is on sale this week for 25% off.

Nordic cuisine is growing in popularity, perhaps owing to its focus on fresh and wild flavors. Home Baked follows from this tradition, incorporating unexpected flavors into easy and healthy bread recipes, such as “green knots” that use fresh nettles, and fragrant bread made with lavender buds.

Including a step-by-step guide to kneading dough, and full color photographs of the farm and each recipe, Home Baked is a must-have for bakers and bread-lovers everywhere.

Richard Bertinet, author of Dough: Simple Contemporary Breads agrees:

“Hanne Risgaard’s connection to and understanding of the grains grown and milled on her land at Skaertoft shines through in this beautiful collection of Nordic recipes, drawn from the rich baking heritage of northern Europe. Home Baked is atmospheric and appealing!”

Get Home Baked for 25% off this week only!

“There’s no despair in a seed.”

Thursday, August 9th, 2012

What’s in a seed?

If you’re paying attention as closely as author and activist Janisse Ray, you might say life itself — and not just the plant life that waits patiently inside — but all life on Earth depends upon how we treat these tiny, potent, irreplaceable seeds.

Ray talked about her new book The Seed Underground, and explained the importance of seeds and biodiversity in a recent radio interview on “Your Call” with Rose Aguilar, and took calls from listeners and weighed in on topics raised by other guests, too.

Of the thousands of seed varieties available at the turn of the 20th century, 94 percent have been lost — forever.  “And the less biodiverse any system is,” says Ray, “the greater the potential for its collapse.”  So how can we save the seeds we have left?  Listen here.

Part of what makes The Seed Underground so inspiring are Ray’s visits with fellow seed-saving revolutionaries around the country, coupled with her own lifelong passion for the environment and for seed-saving.

In this excerpt on Utne.com, you can join Janisse as she meets with Sylvia Davatz, a seed-saver and gardener in Vermont.

The woman who answered my knock didn’t look like a revolutionary. She was slim, in blue jeans and hyacinth turtleneck. Sporty reading glasses hung from her neck.

“Right on time,” she said.

I smiled. “For once.”

When I decided to learn as much as I could about seeds, I was directed to a village in central Vermont where a woman lives—a quiet, under-the-radar revolutionary, I was told—who understands some things I’m trying to understand.

She invited me inside, into a sparkling and artful kitchen. The walls were red, the stove green, the counters blue. On a woodstove rested a pan filled with seed heads I did not recognize. The woman followed my eyes. “Leeks,” she said.

Meet Sylvia Davatz, radical American gardener. Somewhere in her well-kept home in the forested hills of central Vermont is a seed collection of plant varieties salvaged from the dustbins of history. “I’m the Imelda Marcos of seeds,” she laughed. “I have a thousand varieties in my closet!”

Keep reading…

Weekend Project Special

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Chelsea Green authors give you plenty of reasons “why” you should live more simply, sustainably and resiliently. But, readers return to our books year after year because they are also practical — filled with information culled from years of an author’s hands-on experience. Our authors guide you through the “hows” of living in concert with the natural world — sometimes through cutting-edge techniques and other times using timeless traditions — in a way that helps you become your own expert too.

In honor of this tradition, we’ve gathered a selection of inspired and unique projects from our books and put them on sale. Learn how to start a batch of wild sourdough, save tomato seeds, build an outdoor shower heated by the sun or rethink your personal finances to keep your money safe from the global banking system.

Happy reading from the folks at Chelsea Green Publishing.

FERMENT-IT-YOURSELF: Start a batch of sourdough

The Art of Fermentation Cover Image
Retail Price: $39.95
Sale Price: $25.97

Sourdough is a mixed culture starter for rising bread (as well as many other culinary applications). Want to start your own sourdough and keep it healthy? In The Art of Fermentation you’ll find tips for this and much, much more.

All you need to start a sourdough is flour and dechlorinated water. Maintaining it takes a little care and attention, but with Katz as your guide you’ll be catching wild yeasts in no time. FIND OUT HOW…

Sandor Katz presents the concepts and processes behind fermentation in ways that are simple enough to guide a reader through their first experience making sauerkraut or yogurt, and in-depth enough to provide greater understanding and insight for experienced practitioners.

GARDEN TIP: How to save tomato seeds

The Seed Underground Cover Image
Retail Price: $17.95
Sale Price: $11.67

There’s a trick to saving tomato seeds, trapped as they are in the juicy, gooey flesh of the tomato. But it’s not hard to do, and if you save seeds from varieties you love you’ll be joining in the front lines of the latest food revolution

 Along with charming profiles of radical seed-savers, the book has practical tips. LEARN HOW TO SAVE TOMATO SEEDS…

In The Seed Underground, Janisse Ray’s latest work of literary nonfiction, the award-winning author and activist argues that if we are to secure the future of food, we first must understand where it all begins: the seed. 

 

 

RECIPE: Bake a loaf of lavender bread

Home Baked Cover Image
Retail Price: $39.95
Sale Price: $25.97

If you’re tired of the same old wheat bread, Home Baked will offer you some exciting new recipes, like fragrant lavender bread, and teach you to work with different grains.

Take a look at two receipes (Hanne’s Lemon Pie and Lavender Bread) HERE….

With enticing, full-color photographs throughout, Home Baked offers recipes and techniques for baking artisan bread and pastry using organic, nutrient-rich grain and stone-milled flour.

 

 

DIY PROJECT: Make a self-watering planter

Masonry Heaters Cover Image
Retail Price: $24.95
Sale Price: $16.22

You can grow many different crops on your balcony, or in a sunny spot indoors using self-watering planters. Even better yet, it doesn’t have to cost you (much). Take a lookt at this great weekend project to make your own self-watering growing container (on a bookstrap budget). Learn how HERE…

A comprehensive “how-to” guide for growing fresh food in the absence of open land, Fresh Food from Small Spaces can teach you how to make some — and much more. The book is a practical, comprehensive, and fun guide to growing food in containers and other small spaces.

 

 

ORGANIC GARDENING 101: A crash course in composting

Roundwood Timber Framing Cover Image
Retail Price: $24.95Sale Price: $16.22

The first step in year-round organic gardening is learning to make good compost. It will form a strong foundation for whatever you choose to grow in your greenhouses and cold frames.

Get started with a good foundation by building nutrient-rich compost for your plants. FIND OUT HOW…

This tip comes from Eliot Coleman’s classic Four-Season Harvest. If you love the joys of eating home-garden vegetables but always thought those joys had to stop at the end of summer, this book is for you.

 

 

HOW TO: Build a simple solar shower

The Hand-Sculpted House Cover Image
Retail Price: $35.00Sale Price: $22.75

If you can’t beat summer’s heat, you might as well join it! Build a solar shower and enjoy the sun’s warmth in a whole new wayTry this easy-to-build, inexpensive solar shower. FIND OUT HOW…

This is just one of the great ideas in The Carbon-Free Home. The energy used in your home produces more global-warming pollution than your car. But there are plenty of simple things you can do to reduce your home’s reliance on fossil fuels.

Read this book—then grab your handsaw, tape measure, and drill, and get started! A life powered by the sun is waiting for you. Meant as a guide for renovating existing homes, The Carbon-Free Home gives you the hands-on knowledge necessary to turn your existing house into an environmental asset.

PERMACULTURE TIPS: A guide to gardening with chickens

The Straw Bale House Cover Image
Retail Price: $39.95
Sale Price: $25.97

With a few careful considerations to protect your crops, chickens can help out in the garden — and Harvey Ussery can help you figure it out. Put those hens to work in your compost pile! FIND OUT HOW…

His book, The Small-Scale Poultry Flock, is the most comprehensive and definitive guide to date on raising all-natural poultry for the homesteader and small farmer.

No other book on raising poultry takes an entirely whole-systems approach, or discusses producing homegrown feed and breeding in such detail—it is truly an invaluable and groundbreaking guide that will lead farmers and homesteaders into a new world of self-reliance and enjoyment.

BE PREPARED: A list of what you need to survive

When Disaster Strikes Cover Image
Retail Price: $24.95
Sale Price: $16.22

If you’re prepared for the worst, it won’t be so bad: put together a 72-hour survival kit today. This simple guide will help ensure you’re ready for the unexpected.  GET STARTED…

Disasters often strike without warning and leave a trail of destruction in their wake. Yet armed with the right tools and information, survivors can fend for themselves and get through even the toughest circumstances. Matthew Stein’s When Disaster Strikes provides a thorough, practical guide for how to prepare for many of life’s most unpredictable scenarios.

This disaster-preparedness manual covers how to find and store food, water, and clothing, as well as the basics of gathering and sterilizing water, building a fire, and treating injuries in an emergency. 

 

GREEN UP YOUR FINANCES: Become your own banker

Local Dollars Local Sense Cover Image
Retail Price: $17.95
Sale Price: $11.67

Did you know that local investing doesn’t just have to involve food co-ops and small businesses? You can do wonders by strategically investing in yourself as well. Local Dollars, Local Sense can show you how to cut your addiction to easy credit-card money and save by becoming your own banker. Just like in Monopoly, you can become your own banker. FIND OUT HOW…

In this book, local economy pioneer Michael Shuman demystifies the growing realm of local investment choices—from institutional lending to investment clubs and networks, local investment funds, community ownership, direct public offerings, local stock exchanges, crowdfunding, and more.

 

 

 

 

More New and Noteworthy Titles On Sale

Water Green Guide coverThe Resilient Gardener coverThe Chinese Medicinal Herb Farm coverMaking the Most of your Glorious Glut coverNOFA Guides Set cover
Top-Bar Beekeeping coverThe Holistic Orchard coverPeople and Permaculture coverWild Flavors coverGoing with the Grain cover

 

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* Books on sale until August 15th*

Celebrate National Apple Week with Delicious Recipes and Tips

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Ever since Eve took some snake’s bad relationship advice, the apple has been an important part of our lives.

Apples come in many colors and subtle differences of flavor, each unique and bursting with vitamins. In temperate climates they’re easy to grow, and recipes abound for cooking with them in both sweet and savory dishes, as well as preserving them by canning or drying.

This week is National Apple Week, and to celebrate we are offering a bushel of books with tips for growing your own apples, lists of rare varieties, nutrition information about apples, and recipes.

The books below are on sale for 25% off until August 13.

The Holistic Orchard: Tree Fruits and Berries the Biological Way by Michael Phillips
Phillips’s newest book demystifies the basic skills everybody should know about the inner-workings of the orchard ecosystem, as well as orchard design, soil biology, and organic health management.
The Apple Grower: A Guide for the Organic Orchardist, Second Edition by Michael Phillips
For decades fruit growers have sprayed their trees with toxic chemicals to control a range of pests. This book shows it is possible to grow apples organically, and teaches you how.
Cooking Close to Home: A Year of Seasonal Recipes by Diane Imrie and Richard Jarmusz
Created by a nutritionist and a chef, this gorgeous cookbook has plenty of unique apple recipes including Simple Apple Cheddar Turnovers and Delicata Squash with Apple.
Old Southern Apples: A Comprehensive History and Description of Varieties for Collectors, Growers, and Fruit Enthusiasts by Creighton Lee Calhoun
An indispensable reference for fruit lovers everywhere, especially those who live in the southern United States. Features descriptions of some 1,800 apple varieties that either originated in the South or were widely grown there before 1928.
Whole Foods Companion: A Guide for Adventurous Cooks, Curious Shoppers, and Lovers of Natural Foods by Dianne Onstad
Nutrition information on tons of different fruits and vegetables, including apples.

Power from the People is Here!

Monday, August 6th, 2012

Power from the People: How to Organize, Finance, and Launch Local Energy Projects by Greg Pahl is here!

If you’ve ever looked up at the power lines feeding into your home and wondered if there could be a better way than giant plants miles from town supplying your electricity by burning dirty fossil fuels — this is the book for you. The answer is an emphatic yes! There are many better ways to generate power than our current system, and Greg Pahl shows through examples from around the country and world how communities can take control of their energy destiny, generating power in more resilient and more sustainable ways.

Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet says about the book, “Talk about down-and-dirty. Or rather, down-and-clean! Here’s the actual useful detail on how to do the stuff that really needs doing. Read it and get to work!”

Power from the People is the second book in the Community Resilience Guide series — a project in partnership with Post Carbon Institute exploring the newest and most promising examples of relocalization for uncertain times.

To celebrate the arrival of Power from the People, we’re sharing the Foreword from the book, written by Van Jones, author of the recently-released book Rebuild the Dream and The New York Times bestseller The Green Collar Economy. Jones is president and co-founder of Rebuild the Dream, a platform to foster bottom-up, people-powered innovations to help fix the U.S. economy. He is currently a Visiting Fellow in Collaborative Economics at Presidio Graduate School in San Francisco.

“This book rests and optimistic message on a pessimistic premise,” Jones writes in the opening of the Foreword. “The paradox is this: Only by recognizing how much worse things can get can we muster the energy and creativity to win a better future. In that regard, the book you hold in your hands is not just an action guide; it is a survival guide.”

We couldn’t agree more. But, if that’s not enough, Jones adds:

Climate change and the economic and equity crises of our communities may appear to have little in common, but they share a key determining factor—namely, our near-complete dependence on coal, oil, and natural gas. The carbon dioxide produced by driving our vehicles, heating (and cooling) our homes, and lighting our cities with fossil fuels is the main culprit behind climate change. Meanwhile, that same dependence on fossil fuels sucks billions of dollars every year out of communities across America, with the poorest households often hit hardest.

But what if we found ways to power our homes, businesses, factories, and vehicles that didn’t warm the planet, that kept local dollars circulating in local economies, and that even created local jobs? What if we spread those climate-friendly, local-economy-boosting, job-creating ideas to every city and town across the country?

For more inspiring words from Van Jones, continue reading below.
Power from the People – Foreword by Van Jones

Don’t Bawk: The Wild and Wonderful Chicken Tractor

Thursday, August 2nd, 2012

Aside from the sheer pleasure of telling your friends, straight-faced, that you maintain your garden using something called a “chicken tractor,” there are a slew of other benefits to working the land with a few of your animal friends. Getting rid of pests without chemicals, for one; letting them do the work of weeding and tilling the soil—not to mention laying down some natural fertilizer—for another; and don’t forget supplementing your chicken feed bill. Oh, and farm fresh eggs, and meat, if you like.

PS: Kudos to Chelsea Green’s own Makenna Goodman for naming this post.

The following is an excerpt from the forthcoming Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture, Second Edition by Toby Hemenway. It has been adapted for the Web.

One secret to integrating small animals into the garden is a small mobile pen, called an animal tractor (see the illustration on page 168). By keeping livestock in a movable enclosure, animal tractors let the gardener decide where the animal will work best, rather than allowing the critters to wander and wreak havoc in freshly seeded beds. The bottomless pens concentrate the animals’ weeding, tilling, and manuring in a small space, which is the key to successfully melding animals and gardens. With an animal tractor, you can have weed-free, surface-tilled, perfectly manured raised beds with only a few minutes of (your) work per day.

Chickens are ideally suited to animal tractors, although ducks, rabbits, pigs, and guinea pigs have been used in these mobile pens. Andy Lee has written an entire book on the subject, Chicken Tractor, which I recommend to anyone planning to use an animal tractor.

A chicken tractor is a bottomless pen on wheels that fits over a garden bed. A typical one might be four feet wide by eight feet long and about two feet high. This design, one of many, is an open wood-frame box, covered on the sides with one-inch chicken wire (poultry netting), roofed with plastic panels, having wheels or skids at one end and a door to let the birds in and out. Inside, food and water containers hang from the roof; in some models, perches project from the sides. There are other designs, including circular styles, but that’s the gist. To move the pen, just lift one end and roll it on the wheels or skids. Animal tractors work best with garden beds as wide as the tractor, and ideally, in lengths that are an even multiple of the tractor length.

The number of birds per tractor varies with the breed, but as a rule of thumb, a laying hen needs four square feet of room, while a broiler need two square feet. Thus, a thirty-two-square-foot tractor can hold up to eight layers or sixteen broilers.

You can use a chicken tractor to build soil in three basic ways: rotation, sheet mulching, and deep mulching.

In the rotation method, first thing in the morning you wheel the pen and chickens to an unused garden bed. The birds can stay inside while you move it—they’ll scurry along inside the pen. Withhold their feed until they’ve been on the new bed for an hour or so. That way the hungry birds will eat the vegetation inside the tractor area. Let the birds weed, till, and manure the soil all day. The next morning, wheel the tractor down the bed to the next fresh spot and sprinkle some mulch on the first bed. Rotate through all the unused beds. This system requires that some of your garden beds go fallow part of the time so the chickens have soil to improve. Andy Lee’s garden is twice as big as he needs, which lets him rotate chicken tractors through each bed every other year.

As the tractor leaves each raised bed, you can sow a cover crop of buckwheat, or winter rye and vetch, and bring the chickens back to eat and till it again when the cover crop is about four inches high. Not only does this boost fertility and soil life enormously, but it cuts down on chicken feed bills. The result is superb soil with little labor, plus eggs and meat if you wish.

To sheet mulch with chickens, leave the tractor in one spot for several days. Each day, add about an inch of mulch and let the chickens work over the mulch and add manure to it. When the mulch is about four inches deep, move the chickens to a new spot and repeat the process. This way, you (and the chickens) are adding both nutrients and organic matter to the soil. The mulch binds the nitrogen and other nutrients in place while the whole mixture composts. Treat this bed as you would any new sheet-mulched bed and plant it with seedlings in soil pockets or seeds in a top layer of potting soil.

You can also use a chicken tractor to make a deep-mulch garden bed, useful in gardens too small to move the tractor every day or where the soil is very poor. Leave the chicken tractor in one place and add about an inch of mulch each day. After about five weeks—or the time it takes broilers to grow from chicks to mature—you’ll have a thick raised bed to plant. Andy Lee warns that leaving the tractor in one place this long may give predators—dogs, skunks, foxes—time to dig under the pen and attack the birds. If you’re building a deep-mulch bed, he recommends laying chicken wire on the ground around the pen and pinning it in place to frustrate digging predators.

Both mulch techniques work well on sloping as well as level ground. On a slope, the chickens—and gravity—will leave the mulch thicker on the downhill side of the pen, resulting in a level, terraced bed.

Chickens can also graze free-range in the garden, where they will glean insects, slugs, and weed seeds, but it’s best to keep an eye on them in case they find a crop they really like, such as berries or tomatoes. Wait until garden plants are mature before letting the chickens into the garden, as poultry will happily eat tender seedlings. If you allow the birds into the garden in the late afternoon, they won’t be there long enough to do any damage and will naturally return to their coop or tractor at dusk, sparing you the trouble of a lengthy chicken chase.

Growing some of the chickens’ food will cut down on costs and reduce imports to your site, but it’s not realistic to expect to grow all their food. A hen needs about eighty pounds of grain a year, which could be grown on about 1,000 square feet. The numbers add up fast: Feeding a small flock of eight hens would require an eighty-by-one-hundred-foot garden and countless hours of labor to grow and harvest the food. Instead, I’d suggest growing multifunctional plants around the yard to supplement the chickens’ diets, which will cut costs and provide valuable vitamins and fresh foods. These plants could be nicely integrated into the garden design, supplying habitat, food, nutrients, and all the other needs of the ecological garden, rather than just the single function of chicken feed. And growing chicken forage creates yet another closed cycle for the garden. As the chickens build the soil, the resulting food plants will be healthier and more lush, and the chickens in turn grow stronger and more productive.

Enter to Win A Library of Books on Sustainable Living!

Wednesday, August 1st, 2012

In partnership with Mother Earth News, Chelsea Green is offering you the chance to win eight of our newest books on the politics and practice of sustainability!

The most popular and longest running sustainable-lifestyle magazine, Mother Earth News provides wide-ranging, expert editorial coverage of organic foods, country living, green transportation, renewable energy, natural health and green building. Lively, insightful and on the cutting edge, Mother Earth News is the definitive read for the growing number of Americans who choose wisely and live well.

The eight books are…

The Art of Fermentation: An In-Depth Exploration of Essential Concepts and Processes from Around the World by Sandor Ellix Katz
Quite simply, the most comprehensive guide to do-it-yourself home fermentation ever published.
Sowing Seeds in the Desert: Natural Farming, Global Restoration, and Ultimate Food Security by Masanobu Fukuoka
This revolutionary book presents Fukuoka’s plan to rehabilitate the deserts of the world using natural farming, and provides a deep understanding of the relationship between human beings and nature.
The Holistic Orchard: Tree Fruits and Berries the Biological Way by Michael Phillips
Extensive profiles of how to grow raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, gooseberries, currants, and elderberries will have you savoring the prospects of your very own berry patch.
The Chinese Medicinal Herb Farm: A Cultivator’s Guide to Small-Scale Organic Herb Production by Peg Schafer
The first cultivation guide of its kind, presenting invaluable information for growers interested in producing high-quality efficacious herbs in all climates of the US.
Cheese and Culture: A History of Cheese and its place in Western Civilization by Paul Kindstedt
A comprehensive look at the 9,000-year history of cheese, the ways in which it has shaped civilization, and what it can tell us about the future of food.
A Sanctuary of Trees: Beechnuts, Birdsongs, Baseball Bats, and Benedictions by Gene Logsdon
As author Gene Logsdon puts it, “We are all tree huggers.” In this latest book he offers a loving tribute to the woods.
The Transition Companion: Making Your Community More Resilient in Uncertain Times by Rob Hopkins
What if the best responses to peak oil and climate change don’t come from government, but from you and me and the people around us?
Slow Gardening: A No-Stress Philosophy for All Senses and Seasons by Felder Rushing
Slow Gardening will inspire you slip into the rhythm of the seasons, take it easy, and get more enjoyment out of your garden, all at the same time.

Sign up here.


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