Chelsea Green Publishing

The Community-Scale Permaculture Farm

Pages:416 pages
Book Art:Full-color illustrations throughout
Size: 8 x 10 inch
Publisher:Chelsea Green Publishing
Paperback: 9781603584753
Pub. Date March 24, 2015

The Community-Scale Permaculture Farm

The D Acres Model for Creating and Managing an Ecologically Designed Educational Center

Availability: In Stock

Paperback

Available Date:
March 24, 2015

$40.00

With practical examples of alternative building, renewable energy, holistic forestry, no-till gardening, hospitality management, community outreach, and more

The Community-Scale Permaculture Farm describes not only the history of the D Acres project, but its evolving principles and practices that are rooted in the land, its inhabitants, and the joy inherent in collective empowerment.

For almost twenty years, D Acres of New Hampshire has challenged and expanded the common definition of a farm. As an educational center that researches, applies, and teaches skills of sustainable living and small-scale organic farming, D Acres serves more than just a single function to its community. By turns it is a hostel for travelers to northern New England, a training center for everything from metal- and woodworking to cob building and seasonal cooking, a gathering place for music, poetry, joke-telling, and potluck meals, and much more.

While this book provides a wide spectrum of practical information on the physical systems designed into a community-scale homestead, Trought also reviews the economics and organizational particulars that D Acres has experimented with over the years.

The D Acres model envisions a way to devise a sustainable future by building a localized economy that provides more than seasonal produce, a handful of eggs, and green appliances. With the goal of perennial viability for humanity within their ecosystem, D Acres is attempting an approach to sustainability that encompasses practical, spiritual, and ethical components. In short: They are trying to create a rural community ecology that evolves in perpetuity.

From working with oxen to working with a board of directors, no other book contains such a wealth of innovative ideas and ways to make your farm or homestead not only more sustainable, but more inclusive of, and beneficial to, the larger community. Readers will find information on such subjects as:

  • Working with pigs to transform forested landscapes into arable land;
  • Designing and building unique, multifunctional farm and community spaces using various techniques and materials;
  • Creating and perpetuating diverse revenue streams to keep your farm organization solvent and resilient;
  • Receiving maximum benefits and yields for the farm without denigrating resources or the regional ecology;
  • Implementing a fair and effective governance structure;
  • Constructing everything from solar dehydrators and cookers to treehouses and ponds; and,
  • Connecting and partnering with the larger community beyond the farm.

Emphasizing collaboration, cooperation, and mutualism, this book promises to inspire a new generation of growers, builders, educators, artists, and dreamers who are seeking new and practical ways to address today’s problems on a community scale.

REVIEWS AND PRAISE

Publishers Weekly-

"In this meticulously detailed book, Trought relates the lessons gleaned from 17 years of establishing and running D Acres, a nonprofit, community service–oriented farm in the challenging soil and climate of northern New Hampshire. With a serious, pedantic style more common to business books than to the cheerful permaculture genre, he provides extensive descriptions of historical precedents; local geography, geology, climate, and economy; fund-raising; marketing; and community governance and decision-making (there’s a whole chapter on meetings). In addition, there’s more-typical discussion of soil-building, animal husbandry, alternative building techniques, cottage industries, ecological integration, and community engagement. The exposition is threaded with political commentary and seasoned with a strong dose of an admirable but dauntingly earnest ethic. Despite Trought’s sincere love for his work and willingness to share abundant knowledge and experience, his somber, didactic tone may discourage budding eco-villagers still at the initial dreaming and planning stages. His lessons may be more useful and inspiring to those already ankle-deep in their own land-based community ventures.”

Booklist-

"The word permaculture, a shorthand term fusing permanent agriculture with permanent culture, is a recent innovation based on the ecological ideal of caring for the earth and for people by reinvesting any surplus back into the system to minimize waste. Although there are still only a handful of fully functioning permaculture farms worldwide, D Acres near Dorchester, New Hampshire, serves as a role model for other communities aspiring to a high level of sustainability. In this sumptuous handbook of tools and ideas, D Acres cofounder Trought provides a comprehensive blueprint for creating an environmentally and culturally balanced community homestead and shares some of the economic and organizational experiments he and his collaborators have tried over the years. Twenty detailed chapters cover all the fundamentals of running a permaculture-based farm, from governance to budgeting and communication philosophy, as well as designing buildings, setting up water irrigation systems, and managing no-till agriculture. An immensely useful guidebook for organic farmers, cohousing advocates, and anyone interested in learning about a place where sustainability is truly possible."

"Josh Trought shows how society can be brought together in harmonious fashion with ecological systems to produce healthy food, close-knit communities, land stewardship, and beauty in a sustainable way. What I love most about the D Acres model is that from the start, their intent was to experiment AND share the learning. That’s exactly what this book does, describing the philosophical and historical roots of collective living and permaculture, as well as the day-to-day work of growing and building, all with clear and compelling storytelling. Nothing short of miraculous!"--Tim Traver, author of Sippewissett

“I haven’t been to D Acres, but The Community-Scale Permaculture Farm made me want to go. And as any good permaculture project should, this book stacks functions. It’s at once a chronicle of the reinvention of an old family property as a 21st-century enterprise, a first-hand guidebook for developing a successful community, and a useful how-to for ecological homesteading and farming. If you are doing any of those—or thinking about it—this book should be in your hands.”--Toby Hemenway, author of Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture and The Permaculture City

"Josh’s manual offers a wealth of practical advice that will be very useful to those adventuring in the direction that D Acres has developed over twenty years in intentional living and permaculture farming. Truly inspiring!"--Andrew Faust, founder, Center for Bioregional Living

"At a crucial crossroads in our history, this book chronicles a life-giving response to a society bent on self-destruction. With uncommon honesty, Josh Trought lays bare the lessons of once wide-eyed beginners, now seasoned and savvy leaders in the permaculture movement. The journey presented here is inspired and instructive, though nonformulaic and a work in progress. When the dust settles upon our epoch, what will stand out are places like D Acres, which built a living alternative to the ubiquitous, me-centered society. As readers will soon discover, it is hard work turning dreams into reality, but with Josh as your trusty guide, your body will ache for this ‘real’ work."--Jim Merkel, author of Radical Simplicity and founder of the Global Living Project

“Every community should be so blessed to have a permaculture learning center and demonstration farm in its midst. Josh Trought and company provide pure inspiration for learning essential earth skills. Pick up this book and you too can help people connect with the land and a sustainable way of living.”--Michael Phillips, author of The Holistic Orchard

"One cannot discuss sustainable agriculture without considering its community context, nor vice versa. Trought has given a lot of thought to both, and his experience and observations are well worth sharing. I've visited D Acres and been very impressed at the depth of its vision, which is clearly expressed throughout the book.”--Will Bonsall, author of Will Bonsall’s Essential Guide to Radical, Self-Reliant Gardening and Through the Eyes of a Stranger

"Homesteading on a hamlet scale, teaching ecological design, building for the future, and creating new family and tribal bonds in a time of dissolution, the D Acres vision sheds light on the uses of adversity to counter the centrifugal forces of our culture. With many rich vignettes and inventive solutions on offer, this book will reward careful reading."--Peter Bane, author of The Permaculture Handbook and publisher of Permaculture Activist magazine

“If we want people to live ecologically, get along, and heal the Earth, we need to build a local, ecological economy. Josh Trought’s detailed guide points the way to localizing where we get our basic needs and at the same time stay flexible and practical, not utopian-egalitarian. D Acres started with almost nothing, but through permaculture and perseverance, and a lot of hard knocks, it’s getting to where it’s doing everything right. The Community-Scale Permaculture Farm is not merely a model for farmers or for an education center, but for a great kind of life.”--Albert Bates, author of The Post-Petroleum Survival Guide and The Biochar Solution

“What a broad-minded book and thorough record of achievement for a visionary farm enterprise that takes practical steps to counter the capitalist disaster—an inspiration for the next generation of growers.”--Peter Schumann, founder of Bread and Puppet Theater

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Josh Trought

Josh Trought helped to found D Acres of New Hampshire in 1997, and today serves as its director. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Colorado Boulder with a degree in environmental conservation, and has worked for organizations as diverse as the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and Costa Rica’s Tapantí National Park. Currently he is a member of the Artistic Roots co-op in Plymouth, New Hampshire, and serves as treasurer of the Pemi-Baker Solid Waste District. His proudest accomplishments are as a participant at the Bread and Puppet Theater; at La Caravana Arcoiris por la Paz, a mobile ecovillage that traveled across Central and South America; and at D Acres, where he has specialized in forestry, construction, gardening, and administration. The primary motivation behind his life’s work is the healthy perpetuation of our species within its various, diverse ecologies.

AUTHOR VIDEOS

What is Permaculture?

What is Permaculture?

Oxen at a Permaculture Farm

Oxen at a Permaculture Farm

13 Commonly Asked Questions at D Acres

13 Commonly Asked Questions at D Acres

The Root of Food documentary film teaser

The Root of Food documentary film teaser

Basics of Soil with Josh Trought

Basics of Soil with Josh Trought

D Acres Permaculture Through the Seasons Tour 2013

D Acres Permaculture Through the Seasons Tour 2013

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE

Street Farm

Street Farm

By Michael Ableman

Street Farm is the inspirational account of residents in the notorious Low Track in Vancouver, British Columbia—one of the worst urban slums in North America—who joined together to create an urban farm as a means of addressing the chronic problems in their neighborhood. It is a story of recovery, of land and food, of people, and of the power of farming and nourishing others as a way to heal our world and ourselves.

During the past seven years, Sole Food Street Farms—now North America’s largest urban farm project—has transformed acres of vacant and contaminated urban land into street farms that grow artisan-quality fruits and vegetables. By providing jobs, agricultural training, and inclusion in a community of farmers and food lovers, the Sole Food project has empowered dozens of individuals with limited resources who are managing addiction and chronic mental health problems.

Sole Food’s mission is to encourage small farms in every urban neighborhood so that good food can be accessible to all, and to do so in a manner that allows everyone to participate in the process. In Street Farm, author-photographer-farmer Michael Ableman chronicles the challenges, growth, and success of this groundbreaking project and presents compelling portraits of the neighborhood residents-turned-farmers whose lives have been touched by it. Throughout, he also weaves his philosophy and insights about food and farming, as well as the fundamentals that are the underpinnings of success for both rural farms and urban farms. Street Farm will inspire individuals and communities everywhere by providing a clear vision for combining innovative farming methods with concrete social goals, all of which aim to create healthier and more resilient communities.

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Street Farm

Michael Ableman

Paperback $29.95

Farming the Woods

Farming the Woods

By Ken Mudge and Steve Gabriel

In the eyes of many people, the practices of forestry and farming are mutually exclusive, because in the modern world, agriculture involves open fields, straight rows, and machinery to grow crops, while forests are primarily reserved for timber and firewood harvesting. Farming the Woods invites a remarkably different perspective: that a healthy forest can be maintained while growing a wide range of food, medicinal, and other non-timber products. While this concept of “forest farming” may seem like an obscure practice, history indicates that much of humanity lived and sustained itself from tree-based systems in the past; only recently have people traded the forest for the field.  The good news is that this is not an either-or scenario; forest farms can be most productive in places where the plow is not: on steep slopes, and in shallow soils. It is an invaluable practice to integrate into any farm or homestead, especially as the need for unique value-added products and supplemental income becomes more and more important for farmers.

Many already know that daily indulgences we take for granted such as coffee, chocolate, and many tropical fruits, all originate in forest ecosystems. But few know that such abundance is also available in the cool temperate forests of North America. Farming the Woods is the first in-depth guide for farmers and gardeners who have access to an established woodland and are looking for productive ways to manage it. Authors Ken Mudge and Steve Gabriel describe this process as "productive conservation," guided by the processes and relationships found in natural forest ecosystems. 

Farming the Woods covers in detail how to cultivate, harvest, and market high-value non-timber forest crops such as American ginseng, shiitake mushrooms, ramps (wild leeks), maple syrup, fruit and nut trees, ornamental ferns, and more. Comprehensive information is also offered on historical perspectives of forest farming; mimicking the forest in a changing climate; cultivation of medicinal crops; creating a forest nursery; harvesting and utilizing wood products; the role of animals in the forest farm; and how to design and manage your forest farm once it's set up. This book is a must-read for farmers and gardeners interested in incorporating aspects of agroforestry, permaculture, forest gardening, and sustainable woodlot management into the concept of a whole-farm organism. 

Available in: Paperback

Read More

Farming the Woods

Ken Mudge, Steve Gabriel, John Munsell

Paperback $39.95

Natural Beekeeping (Book & DVD Bundle)

Natural Beekeeping (Book & DVD Bundle)

By Ross Conrad

Today's beekeepers face unprecedented challenges, a fact that is now front-page news with the spread of "colony collapse disorder." Newly introduced pests like varroa and tracheal mites have made chemical treatment of hives standard practice, but pest resistance is building, which in turn creates demand for new and even more toxic chemicals. In fact, there is evidence that chemical treatments are making matters worse.

It's time for a new approach. In this set, which includes the new, full-color, Natural Beekeping, Revised and Expanded Edition, and a DVD workshop, Ross Conrad brings together the best "do no harm" strategies for keeping honeybees healthy and productive, all of which are covered in a thoughtful, matter-of-fact way.

About Natural Beekeeping, Revised and Expanded Edition:

Now revised and updated with new resources and including full-color photos throughout, Natural Beekeeping offers all the latest information in a book that has already proven invaluable for organic beekeepers. The new edition offers the same holistic, sensible alternative to conventional chemical practices with a program of natural hive management, but offers new sections on a wide range of subjects, including:

  • The basics of bee biology and anatomy;
  • Urban beekeeping;
  • Identifying and working with queens;
  • Parasitic mite control; and
  • Hive diseases.

Also, a completely new chapter on marketing provides valuable advice for anyone who intends to sell a wide range of hive products.

Natural Beekeeping covers nontoxic methods of controlling mites; eliminating American foulbrood disease without the use of antibiotics; selective breeding for naturally resistant bees; and many other detailed management techniques, which are covered in a thoughtful, matter-of-fact way.

Whether you are a novice looking to get started with bees, 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.

About Natural Beekeeping with Ross Conrad (DVD):

In this filmed workshop, Ross Conrad flips the script on traditional approaches by proposing a program of selective breeding and natural hive management. The video presents a comprehensive survey of natural beekeeping methods and challenges, including segments filmed in thefield. It offers practical information that every aspiring beekeeper needs to know—everything from basic hive equipment to working with your bees to harvesting and processing honey.

Available in: Mixed media product

Read More

Natural Beekeeping (Book & DVD Bundle)

Ross Conrad, Gary Paul Nabhan

Mixed media product $54.95

Horse-Powered Farming for the 21st Century

Horse-Powered Farming for the 21st Century

By Stephen Leslie

With contributions from more than 60 contemporary draft-animal-powered farmers and equipment manufacturers

Now is a time of exciting new developments for live animal power. As the numbers of adherents to this way of life grow, ecologically minded farmers in their fields are developing efficient horse-drawn systems, and equipment manufacturers in small shops all across North America and Europe are coming forth with new innovations in ground-drive technology that have us poised on the cusp of another agricultural revolution—with working horses, mules, donkeys, and oxen at the heart of it.

Stephen Leslie’s first book, The New Horse-Powered Farm, presented an overview of the many facets of running a small, diversified farm with live horse power. Horse-Powered Farming for the 21st Century is focused entirely on the tools and methods required to successfully manage the horse-powered market garden with draft animal power. However, this is not a step-by-step how-to guide outlining one single system, but rather a manual that presents a range of options and approaches. Leslie examines the function and use of all the implements typically employed on a contemporary draft-animal-powered market garden and illustrates these points with insightful reports from the field, farm profiles, and home-built solutions contributed by over sixty draft animal-powered farmers from across North America and Europe. 

Each teamster’s story represents a patch in a quilt that is woven together with a narrative thread to guide the reader through the whole fabric of the growing season, from soil preparation to harvest. The book structure follows the seasonal progression of implements, beginning with several examples of contemporary draft-animal-powered produce farms; next an examination of the versatile utility of forecarts; then taking an in-depth look at fertility management on the farm; moving on through primary and secondary tillage, seeding and transplanting; then on to the multifold options for cultivators, tool carriers, and multipurpose implements, with technical harnessing and hitching details for the best use of the implements. For experienced teamsters and beginning market growers farming with horses, this is an invaluable and one-of-a-kind guide, sure to last forever in the agricultural canon. 

Available in: Hardcover

Read More

Horse-Powered Farming for the 21st Century

Stephen Leslie, David Kline

Hardcover $45.00