Chelsea Green Blog

Farming & Homesteading

Farming Against Nature

October 17, 2018

When you’re walking around the grocery store looking at all of the different vegetables, it’s probably hard to imagine that a century ago there was twice the amount of options to choose from. Hundreds of years of growing crops and infusing the soil with chemicals have depleted the dirt of the essential nutrients needed to…

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Why Venture into Vermicomposting?

October 15, 2018

If you’re at all in tune to the agricultural news of late, you’re well aware that soil health is in decline all over the world –  an issue that is having a disastrous impact on our food systems. The answer to this international problem? Worms. And lots of them. But how, you ask? Well, vermicomposting,…

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The Importance of Planting Cover Crops

October 9, 2018

If you want to improve your soils, one of the most important things you can do is to plant cover crops. Not only do they provide diversity they also help to increase the amount of carbon in your croplands – an essential component of stimulating photosynthesis. But to understand which crops to plant, and when,…

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How To Make Your Own Chèvre Using Natural Ingredients

October 5, 2018

Making cheese at home may seem like a time and labor-intensive process, but what if you could make a delicious, high-quality cheese that practically makes itself?  According to David Asher, author of The Art of Natural Cheesemaking, you can. The following recipe for all-natural chèvre will change the way you look at homemade cheese! Related…

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October Garden Planning: 10 Tips for Success

October 4, 2018

Here in the Northeast, October signifies the true start of fall. The days are shorter, the nights and mornings are colder, the leaves are a-changin’, and the first frost is inevitably upon us. But that doesn’t mean our gardening work is done quite yet. There’s still plenty of time to wrap up the season, prepare…

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Harvesting winter spinach

The Winter Harvest Project

October 2, 2018

Four-season farmer Eliot Coleman strikes again with inspiration for all you cold-loving farmers out there! A master of extending the growing season, Eliot explains his strategies for successful winter harvesting and greenhouse design. The following excerpt is from The New Organic Grower, 3rd Edition by Eliot Coleman. It has been adapted for the web. Part…

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The Endless Arugula Bed

September 28, 2018

Let’s face it, buying fresh veggies in the dead of winter after growing your own all summer is a bummer. But what if we told you that you could extend your season, save time, AND save money? Ben Falk, author of The Resilient Farm and Homestead, experimented with overwintering a bed of arugula using a…

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How to Extend the Growing Season

September 27, 2018

Winter may be coming, but that doesn’t mean you should put away those tools just yet! With proper modifications, you can extend your growing season well past the first frost. We’ve compiled a few suggestions for season extension from Four Seasons Farm owner, and organic gardening pioneer, Eliot Coleman. The following excerpt is from The…

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How to Harvest, Store, and Cure Squash

September 26, 2018

Are you a squash newbie, afraid of ruining your crop due to rudimentary (at-best) knowledge? Fear not! Expert gardener and squash-enthusiast, Carol Deppe has some tried-and-true guidelines to make sure you  reap the benefits of your hard work. So before you even think about cutting a stem, read this! The following excerpt is from The…

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Why Cows are the Premier Dairy Choice

September 24, 2018

Let’s be honest… cows (should) rule the world. Well, at least the dairy world. While many grazing animals have been milked throughout the course of history (reindeer and horses included), none have been more valued than the cow – a producer of wealth and nourishment and stability. The following excerpt is from Keeping a Family…

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How to Build Your Own Root Cellar for the Fall Harvest

September 21, 2018

As we ease our way into autumn, make sure you are ready to preserve your root vegetable harvest in a soundly constructed, home storage system. In the following excerpt from Four-Season Harvest, Eliot Coleman shares his expertise on building a successful root cellar. For more step-by-step projects to jumpstart your season extension plans, properly prepare…

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5 Principles of Soil Health

September 19, 2018

Soil is all around us. We walk on it every day. We dig and play and plant in it. We harvest from it and nourish ourselves thanks to it. And yet, many of us aren’t aware just how critical a resource it is for our future. It’s the basis for healthy food production, is a…

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Easy to Make Drying Trays

September 18, 2018

Looking for a new way to enjoy your harvest well into the winter months? If you said, yes, then this one’s for you! By following this simple tutorial, you can expand the lifespan of fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, and even herbs. It’s not only easy, environmentally friendly, and inexpensive — it also means you can enjoy…

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The 4 Keys to Efficient Vegetable Production

September 17, 2018

If the idea of running a vegetable farm sounds daunting, you’re not alone. How can you ensure success while also being environmentally conscientious? What can you do to simplify techniques and reduce expenses? Where do you even begin? Well, young farmer, we’re here to help. Eliot Coleman, a pioneer of organic gardening, has identified the…

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Skills: The Gateway to True Homesteading Freedom

September 13, 2018

As we continue our homesteading focus this month, we wanted to touch on some of the important skills a homesteader needs to use on any given day. Some are learned while others are passed down from homesteader to homesteader, all are important. In this excerpt from The Nourishing Homestead, author Ben Hewitt talks about why…

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Recipe: Fall Harvest Garden Fries

September 12, 2018

Got a lot of root veggies in your fall harvest? Garden fries are an easy and delicious way to use them up! Enjoy them sans sauce, with ketchup, or if you’re looking to impress dinner guests pair them with a garlicky leek dipping sauce. Bon appetit! The following recipe is from Cooking Close to Home…

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Emergence of the Mechanical Mind and Its Dire Implications

September 11, 2018

For as far back as we can remember, humans have been driven by the Mechanical Mind – a desire to evolve, to expand, to consume, to manipulate everything around them to meet their needs without thinking about the consequences. Yet some 200,000 years ago, before the advent of agriculture, there was a different view and…

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Four Ways to Preserve Your Green Bean Bounty

September 7, 2018

It’s harvest season and if you’re anything like us you’ve got green beans up the wazoo. If you’re looking for a new way to preserve the bounty for the winter months, these four salt-based techniques should help. Here’s to months of delicious green beans ahead! The following is an excerpt from Preserving Food Without Freezing…

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Celebrate Homesteading Month with Chelsea Green

September 5, 2018

It’s September, which means it’s time to celebrate homesteading! That’s right, September is International Homesteading Education Month, and throughout the month we’ll be publishing some of our favorite homesteading tips, techniques, recipes, and more. We’ll be featuring some of our favorite homesteading authors including Ben and Penny Hewitt, Beth and Shawn Dougherty, and Carole Deppe. We’ll…

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From the Group Up: A Call for Regenerative Agriculture

August 22, 2018

Farmland covers 38 percent of the Earth’s land area and is a major contributor to climate change. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Soil and plants have the capacity to store huge amounts of carbon in the ground, thus how we grow food can be one of the key solutions to our climate…

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Hip Hip, Hooray! It’s National Book Lovers Day!

August 9, 2018

 If you’re anything like us, this might be one of your favorite days of the year. To help you celebrate as only a book-lover can (with a stack of tomes in your favorite reading nook), we’ve rounded up a few Chelsea Green faves – from bestsellers to staff favorites to brand new, just hit the…

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Community Food Forests in Action

August 6, 2018

Alright. We’ve covered the basics of what a community food forest is, how to plan one, and which approach is best. Now it’s time to see some in action! Keep reading to learn more about some of the pioneers of the food forest movement. The following excerpt is from The Community Food Forest Handbook by Catherine Bukowski…

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Don’t Wear a Straw Hat: A Q&A with Mike Madison

August 1, 2018

In the following Q&A, Mike Madison, author of Fruitful Labor, reflects on over three decades of organic farming, talks about what it means to be sustainable, and offers advice and optimism for young farmers. Looking for even more insight?  Check out our other posts on Fruitful Labor: Profit or Loss from Farming A Farm is…

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Recipe: Simple, Greek-Style Yogurt

July 11, 2018

If you’ve got cows, you likely already know the joys of making your own yogurt. It’s easy, delicious, and oh-so-rewarding! If you don’t have cows, we think this recipe will convince you that you need some. The following excerpt is from Keeping a Family Cow by Joann S. Grohman. It has been adapted for the…

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What Is “Good” Silvopasture Grazing?

July 3, 2018

If you’re not familiar with silvopasture, you should be. The integrated system, which combines aspects of forestry, animal husbandry, grazing, and ecology, offers both the promise of land regeneration and economic livelihood. In order to succeed, however, you need to understand a key component of the system: the art of grazing. While it may seem…

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