Most Americans tend to avoid thinking about manure. Gene Logsdon wants to change that attitude, and he’s written a manure manifesto that will make even the most excrement-averse reader more appreciative of this valuable end-product of digestion.
In his new book Holy Shit: Managing Manure to Save Mankind, veteran homesteader Logsdon gives us a crash course in manure management. He starts with a discussion about the benefits of manure and how ineffectively we deal with most of it, and includes chapter-by-chapter discussions of various livestock manures and their value as fertilizer — you’ll be surprised by how much there is to learn!
Did you know pigs can be trained to “go” in one location, and they can assist in turning the manure to aerate it and help break it down? Or that a sheep’s digestive system is so efficient that weed seeds are destroyed in the process? Be it cow manure, horse manure, pet manure or yes, even humanure, Logsdon lays out how to make use of this natural resource more efficiently. After all, he half-jokingly predicts, manure will be “the hottest commodity on the Chicago Board of Trade one of these days.”
The take-home message is this: Manure is a valuable resource, not a waste product. And it’s time we start demanding that it’s treated as such. He argues that we should not be trying to get rid of manure — we should be harvesting it, doing our best to maintain its nutritive value, and using it wisely on our farms and gardens. “It is, in fact, not possible to have the kind of garden farm society that is now developing without comprehensive knowledge about managing manure,” Logsdon writes.
Holy Shit takes the reader on an entertaining journey through the world of manure. Logsdon’s trademark humor and unabashed criticism of factory farming add to the book’s value and make it a fun as well as informative read. Read an excerpt from Holy Shit, and order a copy of your own.