The Nearings' Sun-Heated Greenhouse

Helen and Scott Nearing find a more natural way to handle New England winter gardening by using a sun-heated greenhouse.


| January/February 1978



The Nearings' handle New England winter gardening by using a sun-heated greenhouse.

The Nearings' handle New England winter gardening by using a sun-heated greenhouse.


Photo By Fotolia/Alis

A sun-heated greenhouse is a project that practically any family can work at and benefit by. The undertaking can enlarge the possibilities of income.

The Nearings' Sun-Heated Greenhouse

It was on a chill day in the autumn of 1932 that Helen and Scott Nearing turned their backs on New York City and signed an agreement to buy a run-down farm in Vermont's Green Mountains. And there they lived for the next 20 years . . . clearing brush, building honest stone structures, and raising most of their own food in gardens that were unbelievably vigorous and productive for New England.

It was a Good Life. So good that when "developers" began turning the slopes around them into a ski resort . . . the Nearings pulled up stakes, moved to a rocky inlet on the coast of Maine, and started all over again.

And that's where you'll find Helen (74) and Scott (94) today . . . still clearing brush, building honest stone structures, and raising most of what they eat in gardens that are unbelievably vigorous and productive for New England.

Two of MOTHER's people were fortunate enough to spend a day with the Nearings this past fall and, as some of the photos accompanying this article attest, they had more than a little difficulty just keeping up with Helen and Scott as they followed the two legendary homesteaders around.

In the first place, MOTHER's editor and photographer couldn't have slept late if they'd wanted to. Why? Because Scott was up at dawn and spent the next hour (right outside their bedroom window) splitting wood for the Nearing's two wood-burning stoves.





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