do black bears eat meat
Black bears and rural living go hand in hand in many parts of North America. So how do you keep bear/human conflicts to a minimum?
Taking into account production, processing, consumption and disposal, the Environmental Working Group found that if everyone in the U.S. gave up meat or cheese one day a week for a year, it would be equivalent to taking 7.6 million cars off the road.
Green & Black’s, an organic chocolate company, takes a two week trip to the Dominican Republic to dig an 11.5 km trench. The trench will supply water to their cocoa farmers, helping product the cocoa which makes Green & Black’s chocolate bars.
One of the secrets of healthy dogs is to feed them healthy food, and raw meat is their natural diet.
The process of training and pruning blackberry plants is demystified by a gardening expert from Gurney's Seed.
In previous posts, we have looked at how guard donkeys work and we’ve examined the pros and cons of using a donkey as a livestock guardian. If you are contemplating using a donkey, let’s look now at how to select a good candidate and how to integrate him or her into your stock.
Outdoors Expert and author Len McDougall feeds venison bones that he's hacked up to his extremely grateful sled dog teams of Siberian huskies. Meat is a carnivore's natural food, and you can see from the health and fitness levels of even his old dogs that the diet agrees with them.
Although used less commonly than dogs or llamas, here is one more possibility for a livestock guardian – a guard donkey.
Dogsleds are clean, green and run on renewable energy.
Experienced LGD owners can easily come up with a list of myths, misconceptions, and misinformation about their dogs. A quick glance at various LGD forums, email lists, or Facebook pages will reveal that these misconceptions are not only widespread but they are also responsible for the majority of problems new LGD owners find themselves in.
Can I use a Great Dane as a LGD? Or a St. Bernard? How about a heeler and Golden crossbred? Being a LGD is not a job you can train any other breed to perform. LGDs are a specialized group of breeds.
Many people waste too much time each trying to get motivated to work. As a result, they get a lot less done than they need to or would like to. In this blog, I show a way that has helped me for many years get motivated to work and stay on task.
Blackberry picking only happens at the height of summer, but is well worth the thorn wounds!
What's going on with the hives, new developments in the Down-East Bee Lady's life, latest bee school news, etc.
Beano, Rancho Cappuccino's resident guard donkey, appears to be experiencing maternal envy. Without a baby of her own, she's taken to borrowing (unasked, of course) the lambs and kids of the sheep and goats she protects.
How to tell when meat or poultry is "off"
One locavore takes responsibility for raising and slaughtering her own chickens.
Plant pathologist Dr. Don Huber brings attention to concerns surrounding Monsanto’s Roundup herbicide, glyphosate.
Cam describes a recent encounter with some aggressive dogs.
Help grow an organic food garden on the White House lawn. Here are some easy ways you can participate.
Americans are turning to smaller, affordable housing. Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence looks into this trend.
Aside from being the closest breed of dog to their cousin, the Gray Wolf, Siberian huskies are different from other breeds in a variety of ways - don't take my word for it, ask any dogsled driver who knows the breed.
Wendy Albright remembers visiting her grandparent's farm where practicing organic living was the preferred way of life; they exercised natural crop cultivation, gathered fresh chicken eggs, canned both vegetables and meat and the term "eating like a thrasher" became a reality.
With its new clothing tags, Levi’s encourages consumers to donate unwanted clothes to Goodwill.
The newest member at Goat Song Farm: A 3 week old, purebred Nubian doeling named 'Rose Of Summer'.
Ed and Joan Kobrinski left a large family home for a smaller, simpler cottage—and they’ve never looked back. Their tips for downsizing and living in smaller spaces could help make your transition easier.
With a new program promising to reduce the price of fresh fruits and vegetables and reduce the levels of not-so-good-for-you ingredients in their house brand products, Wal-Mart aims to make a positive change in the diet of the average American.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence pledges to go 'Meatless in May' to raise awareness about the environmental effects of consuming meat.
Livestock guard dogs were found in a sweep of cultures from southern Europe through Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and central Asia. They worked in the company of shepherds who often spent weeks on high summer pasture or on long migratory routes.
Jan Dohner explains how the different Livestock Guard Dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors.
In a previous post, “What is a Livestock Guard Dog?,” I described what livestock guard dogs do but it is also exceptionally important to know how they do this job. Understanding how not only helps us work with our LGDs but also explains why other breeds or crosses with non-LGD breeds are not likely to perform this same outstanding job.
Livestock guard dogs are an attractive choice for predator control on the farm. Jan Dohner gives us an honest look at the pros and cons of choosing a Livestock guard dog versus a guard donkey or llama.
Re-homed adult or rescue LGDs are another option when you are looking for a working livestock guard dog for your farm.
In our last few posts, we’ve been looking at the various breeds of livestock guard dogs. But before you start looking at advertisements or litters of puppies, there are a few more questions for you to ask yourself. They are centered on two broad issues – your predator problems and your farm or homestead.
In this post, Jan Dohner describes the different roles a livestock guard dog can perform on a farm or homestead - a full-time livestock guardian, a general farm guardian, or a family companion.
In Part One of this post, Jan Dohner explained how the different Livestock Guard Dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors. In Parts Two and Three, we take a brief look at some of the more common LGD breeds available in North America.
Repairing or replacing trim around a door is easy, and you need only a few simple tools.
Docking of dairy cows serves no purpose and causes pain and discomfort for the
Roger Doiron, a MOTHER EARTH NEWS contributor and the found of Kitchen Gardeners International, recently spoke at a TEDx conference about the power of gardening.
A mysterious "ailment" brings our first frost to the goat pen.
If you want a superior doughnut (or any product), start with the best.
Dole, with 2009 net revenues of $6.8 billion, is the world's largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables, and is the leading producer of organic bananas and producer/shipper of organic pineapples.
A short list of gift ideas for gardeners.
You’ve done your homework – examining your needs, situation, and breed preferences – and now you are ready to select your LGD. This is an expensive, long- term commitment of time and energy. This LGD will be protecting your farm and stock. Please take your time to choose your pup carefully.
A new film called 'Behind the Water' is an engaging story of the men and women searching to find clean water. The film takes viewers on a wild ride through some of the world’s most rural and restricted areas, many captured on film for the first time.
The Obama Administration releases its plans for new renewable energy sources. Ken Salazar, Secretary of the Interior, explains that the new solar energy zones span six states and keep both domestic energy and environmental preservation in mind. If completed, the power generated from these solar energy zones would provide electricity to roughly seven-million homes.
Veggie meatloaf makes for a hearty, delicious entree or side dish perfect for vegetarians and vegans at Thanksgiving. Check out these three varieties: one features chickpeas, one lentils and one vegetarian meat substitute.
Boulder Food Rescue is a non-profit what is helping to redefine food waste in America.
Carolyn shares nostalgic summer memories of life on the farm including owning a pet rooster, picking wild blackberries, and eating fried turtle.
North Carolinian Master Beekeeper, Tia Douglass, offers an introduction to chemical-free, natural beekeeping, bees and approach to raising pollinators.
What does a lone homesteader in the wilderness, miles off the grid, do when a rambunctious black bear challenges him for the right to a territory?
We are trialing 135 varieties of cucumber, winter squash and muskmelon - with a focus on Downy Mildew resistance and fruit quality. An introduction to our trials and to the importance of variety trials in general.
America needs one million new farmers. Veterans want the job.
Spiller Farm has a history of growing incredible amounts of food for those in need. They are presently working on steps to make sure that their farm and land will always have a focus on agricultural undertakings.
Natalia Bragg of Wade, Maine, is a sixth-generation herbalist who is gaining well-deserved recognition for her work with the rich variety of plants and trees on her remote farm.
Last December, the Quimby family paid $1,100 to heat and power their Winthrop, Maine, farmhouse for the month. Something had to be done. Jeld Wen, manufacturer of energy efficient doors and windows, came to the rescue.
Storing winter squash and preserving other vegetables through the winter presents their own set of challenges to the home gardener and homesteader. We find that growing food is just one half of the equation, and it is easy to be caught unprepared or find that the space and temperature requirements for storage can be hard to come by.
Although livestock guard dogs are the oldest and most traditional livestock guardians, Jan Dohner gives us a look at the other two livestock guardians – llamas and donkeys.
In Part One of this post, Jan Dohner explained how the different livestock guard dog breeds were developed and introduces us to their differences in style of work, temperament and other behaviors. In parts two and three, we take a brief look at some of the more common LGD breeds available in North America.
To ensure you have quality fat in the kitchen from pastured animals, learn how to render beef tallow at home. I’ve rendered beef fat into quart jars of tallow two years in a row and consider myself seasoned in the art of avoiding too much of a mess in making it. The fat lends a flavor to dishes that is particularly desirable for Mexican foods, fried potatoes and savory pie crusts. This fat keeps for three months in a refrigerator.
So, while I’m making mead, tanning skins and staring out at the weird weather, two of my pregnant goat does are having a race to see who will deliver first.
Take a seat on this comfy sofa you made yourself using recycled car seats.
Springtime in Urbania can be fraught with temptations at the stores. I have managed to navigate these temptations, sometimes just by 'smelling the clover hay'! Now that the veggies are in, all we have to do is wait for the summer vegetable frittata!
On Saturday, the G-20 will likely discuss trade policy that affects American farmers.
Cam describes "double digging" as a way of creating a new garden without losing precious topsoil.
Using Pinterest can help inspire new gardening ideas.
Following a disastrous investigation into the Energy Star program’s certification process, the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency are making major changes, including scrapping automated approval and requiring stricter lab results.
Odyssey Day embarked from Washington D.C. a few weeks ago as a nationwide effort to encourage and promote the use of petroleum-free fuel. The day is sponsored by the Department of Energy's Clean Cities, which has helped reduce petroleum use by almost more than 2 billion gallons so far.
Anticipation of warm weather, bees, flowers, and HONEY!
Read dozens of reports of reader's homesteading adventures.
How to build a greenhouse of used sliding-glass patio doors that is warmer and less expensive than plastic, and keeps out burrowing animals.
The Coturnix Quail egg is very nutritious, has been in many civilizations as the treatment for many ailments, now it is back in our era as the only dietetic egg due to its amazing components.
Find all of the mulch you need for free in your own back yard.
Here are things to consider when choosing your cat or dog food.
Cam describes the challenges of winter driving and cutting down trees.
Mary Quinn Doyle shares a background about how she became involved in a volunteer project traveling around Maine for over two years visiting over 180 unique farms to take photos and write stories about them for an educational book and website.
In this blog we explore making your own ricotta and kefir, with recipes!
The Blacked-capped Chickadee, a frequent visitor to backyard bird feeders, loses a surprising amount of weight each night. Don't try this diet!
These five great bread recipes from Eating Well Magazine have all the variety and flavor you’re looking for, plus some.
When the right bread envelopes sun-ripened tomatoes, one of the most righteous tastes of summer is yours to enjoy.
At breeding time, things aren't always what they seem. Sometimes things can really go awry!
My top 10 links to delicious quick cured meats, fresh cheeses and pickles for your next summer picnic.
Ben Davis, of Ben Does Life, has a truly inspirng weight loss story, but it's how message about how to be happy that is most motivational.
Rabbits are a fabulously healthful, economical and ecologically sound source of meat, and they don’t have to be kept in hanging cages. Rabbits can be raised on pasture to produce food for your family while improving the quality of your land.
This rustic, resourcefully sustainable dog fence fits right into the landscape. Before you install a fence, look around your place first to see what's already available.
User of our CU photo-sharing website submits photo documents the building process on their new biomass and solar dome home.
Don't forget to submit your photos to our CU photo-sharing website. Your favorite moments could become famous on our homepage!
Check out this magical photograph of an energy-efficient dome home and the surprise above.
Dogs can perform a variety of useful tasks on farms and rural properties, but can cause problems if they stray.
Great Pyrenees have a reputation as great livestock guardian dogs, but they also protect poultry. Read what two owners of Great Pyrenees have to say about the dogs’ innate ability to protect poultry and other livestock.
It's easy to get distracted and forget a few absolutes when it comes to food safety. Take this quiz and see if you know your stuff!
A Grade 1 group come through the farm for a tour
Today, resourceful homeowners are creating more space without moving walls. One innovative solution uses heavy-duty sliding door hardware to show how a vacation home benefits from more efficient floor space.
Guard donkeys and a good pen for nighttime can be vital to protecting new lambs and kids, especially with coyotes on the prowl. Find out how all it takes is one small mistake to produce fatal consequences on the farm.
Get a materials list and step-by-step insructions for low tunnel construction for your backyard garden.
Doug and Jennie Ostgaard designed and built a photovoltaic system for their home, a project they was completed in six months. DIY photovoltaic solar has many benefits, and they outline a few of them here.
With photovoltaic (PV) panel technology you can tap into the amazing world of free totally renewable energy from the sun. You generally cannot find a better more reliable source of power on the planet that solar. In our book you will find that a DIY on grid/off grid system is very affordable and a wise choice for almost everyone.
One of the favorite events among attendees to the Puyallup MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR was investigative author Doug Fine’s Hemp Bound talk. Here are his thoughts on why hemp matters so much, a belief that was translated into a passionate and funny workshop.
Are you one who can't get things done on time or follow up on promises? If so, you are probably an excuse maker. To get off the hook, you'll come up with a thousand reasons why you didn't get your work done. Read this blog and put an end to excuses.
Many of us hold convictions about others and the world around us that are so wrong that they seriously misguide us, even rob us of happiness and contentment. Don't believe everything you think. Question your beliefs and discover the truth.
We may find it overwhelming to know where to begin in teaching others to eat healthily. People attempting to eat healthier find it difficult to know where to begin. "The Dirty Dozen" fruits and vegetables gives us all a place to start.
Alternative transportation magazine, A To B, is chock-full of innovative bicycle tecnology reviews and test drives for everything from folding bikes to E-motorcycles and all the accessories in between.
A historic ice house on the LeDuc-Simmons Estate and a local ice harvest at Lake Rebecca demonstrate how ice and other perishables were kept cold in the hot summer months during the 19th century.
Our third child arrived the night of July 30, 2012. After many weeks of waiting and 12 hours of labor that stalled, we welcomed our daughter Nathalia Christine earthside. This is Part One of our birth story.
Shorter length and smaller kid friendly hand loop makes it easier for children to handle their four-legged friends
Fix black radishes the Russian way and eat with hearty bread for a peppery treat.
Why are we feeding our dogs the same exact dog food every single day? Why are we feeding our dogs overly processed food when we try to eradicate processed foods from our own diet? Here are a few basic steps to switching your homestead dog over to a more natural diet.
Goldenrod is starting to bloom in the beeyard now that the cooler weather is on its way.
Quail meat is making its comeback as there has been more of a demand due to the composition of the meat and exotic taste. Restaurants and grocery stores are supplying more quail meat to feed their consumers. There is a lack of producers, therefore education and encouragement is needed to increase the popularity further and meet the demands.
What needs doin' in the beeyard?
Jump start your tomato harvest two months before everyone else with these simple instructions!
For more than 40 years, The Farm Community in Tennessee has been on the forefront of farming, gardening and the green lifestyle.
You can grow a year's supply of beans in a surprisingly small amount of space.
Researchers from the University of Michigan have developed a way to “pressure cook” algae to produce biocrude. The process shows promise in the development of green fuels.
"Life", a Discovery Channel nature documentary series on unique animal behaviors, will air on Animal Planet beginning June 6.
Butternut squash are an important winter food, the rich orange flesh delivering vital nutrients in a sweet and velvety goodness that can be utilized in a variety of ways.
The "Earth Shelter" at The Farm Community in Tennessee combines the geothermal properties of the earth with solar design to produce a very energy efficient home.
Make your barn doors glide with skateboard wheels and other easy to find materials in this DIY project to create sliding barn doors.
This recipe is a great introduction to all the joys and possibilities the world of home made pizza represents.
Here are some ways to make real pizzeria style pizza, complete with homemade crust, a choice of toppings and cheese, and two ways to make your crust. Plus, when you want to go all out for a pizza oven, a Big Green Egg might be your answer.
The Home Star Energy Retrofit Act of 2010, expected to pass this summer, offers rebates for windows, doors, skylights, window films and storm windows and doors.
Global Greens Farm in West Des Moines, Iowa, helps refugees transition from growing food for their families to operating small businesses that sell produce at farmers markets, local grocery stores and to area restaurants.
According to a team from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, organic food is not nutritionally superior to conventional. We know this isn't true, and here's an excellent response from The Organic Center.
Adult dogs need a little help to compete with pups in the adoption game. A spa date with a groomer or in your own back yard can give that older shelter dog more than a shiny coat. It can open the door to a new life.
If using a livestock guard dog is not the right decision for you or your farm, Jan Dohner takes an honest look at another option – the guard llama.
Michael Morley is making progress on the SIPs home he's building in Lawrence, Kan. The roof is in place and the shell is essentially done.
Michael Morley has an exciting update on the house he's building in Lawrence, Kan. The dome is starting to go up!
A scientists who has studied plant pathogens for more than 50 years warns that Roundup Ready crops could cause "a general collapse of our critical agricultural infrastructure."
Why pre-1960 race cars were more efficient than post-1960 race cars, and thus a better example for high efficiency highway cars.
Here are two helpful tips that will help you have a successful tomato plant.
One of the easiest ways to make your own newspaper pots.
Make a shelf or table into a growing space for starting seedlings.
Three easy ways to compost in small spaces and with little effort.
Read about new legislation that would stop the government from funding the fossil fuel industry. Then, sign your name to the petition and make a difference.
A Nature Conservancy director discusses the most endangered animal in the United States. The good news is this critter is on the rebound.
Make a homemade kaleidoscope that rivals the most expensive models with a PVC pipe and a reflector made from mirrors and wood. Point it at anything or use the special reflector tray to make unique kaleidoscopic designs.
Drying food is a good way to eat local produce all year, and if you make this solar food dehydrator for yourself, you’ll be well on your way to delicious meals during colder months.
Winter hardiness is crucial when growing brambles as perennial crops, especially in regions like the Upper Midwest. Here’s a listing of the best hardy raspberry and blackberry varieties, and what you should consider before selecting which cultivars to plant.
Wondering where to vote or what's going to be on the ballot? Find answers to these and many other election questions (plus, a game!) with these resources.
Horns or no horns, that is the question! Why should you disbud your goats, or is it okay to leave the horns on? This post discusses both options with a link to a great article about horns and their beauty.
How we had to adjust to a smaller home, the isolation and quiet.
How our electronics save us space and provide even more room in a small home.
Our selection of a house, downsizing and getting the home built.
Many snakes are actually helpful around the homestead because they hunt rats, mice and other small rodents. But if you have a snake problem, a terrier can help keep them under control.
Going camping, hiking, or canoeing this summer? HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares a big-batch granola recipe that will feed your entire group—or one hungry teen.
I've been living in my tipi for almost a month now. Last night, under a chorus of screech owl trills and whinnies, I spent a little time reflecting on some things I've learned about this curious way of living. Enjoy.
We know you're anxious to get growing! But HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel says it's not time to plant seedlings just yet.
From switching out light bulbs to bundling up your water heater, environmental journalist, Simran Sethi, shares some simple and stress-free tips on how to save energy in your home.
The US Department of Agriculture really, really doesn’t want us to read this report, which proves the connection between factory meat and MRSA, the antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria that now kills more people each year than AIDS.
Use programmable watering timers in your garden to help you maintain a regular schedule, keeping your plants well hydrated with less work.
In light of the environmental, economic and other damage caused by the Gulf oil spill, has your opinion about increased domestic drilling changed? Yes or no, we want to hear your thoughts on the topic.
Despite killed well, production continues on The Frontier, an independent feature documentary that celebrates coastal Louisiana.
A new episode in the PBS series Journey to Planet Earth, hosted by Matt Damon, will feature Mother Earth News contributing editor and visionary Lester Brown’s “Plan B” on how we can save civilization in the face of global climate change.
Fresh pesto is great in the summer, but it's even better in the middle of winter!
South Dakota and Alaska electric cooperatives received the award for 2012 Wind Cooperatives of the Year.
"Queen of the Sun: What Are the Bees Telling Us?" is a new bee documentary that examines the global bee crisis through the eyes of beekeepers, scientists, farmers and philosophers. The film emphasizes the thoughts of biodynamic and organic beekeepers on Colony Collapse Disorder and highlights the impact of industrial agriculture on the relationship between humans and bees.
We no longer have to make what we need to get by day by day, but for many the desire lingers—and even surges as a strong cultural movement from time to time. Making and growing things yourself is a gentle rebellion against a mass-produced world.
Swine flu may or may not be the pandemic that cable newscasters are proclaiming - but why take chances? This most recent health scare is yet another reminder that eating local, organic food - preferably raised by a source you know and trust - is just a smart thing to do.
Ten easy-to-make homemade soup recipes from Eating Well magazine that are suitable for any occasion.
These resources will help you learn how to eat seasonal foods in order to save grocery money.
All of us farmers,large and small, are a big part of the engine that drives the economy
of rural communities, rural counties and rural states.This year, we are learning a lot about what happens when that engine sputters.
After months of waiting, worrying and hoping, the clouds finally arrived here at Yellabird Farm last week and brought us the long-sought gift of good rain. It was a great two days of slow and soaking moisture that the cracked soil guzzled up...
Addition to our family and our homestead. Echo a GSD with a new chance at life in his furever home.
Beehive happenings since my last blog post.
Our experience in living with bears.
This is a rundown of films that came out in the last few years. These films cover a wide range of environmental topics, from energy, climate, and fuel, to food, farming, and health. Many of the films have won awards or been critically acclaimed.
Why locally-raised clean meat costs more than feed-lot meat; the role large USDA-inspected meat processing facilities play in the food chain. Plus a bad joke.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence explains the environmental effect of consuming too much meat and offers tips on how to incorporate more vegetarian meals into your diet.
Recipes and ideas for meals with less meat.
Cole describes some not-so-honest butcher practices involving meat loaf mix. Buyer Beware!
Selecting a good potential guardian llama, bringing him home, and introducing him to your stock.
This recipe gives cooks another use for a common pizza dough recipe.
Here's your opportunity to win a dough whisk from King Arthur Flour. This odd-looking contraption does a fantastic job of mixing together all kinds of dough.
Our winner of the KAF dough whisk is Dea Keen, and here is her pizza dough recipe.
Today as I was researching Habitat for Humanity, I learned how far its helping hand reaches. Even more interesting to me, though, was that Habitat continues to build in such war-torn counties as Afghanistan and Pakistan.
User of our CU photo-sharing website submits photo documents the building process on their new biomass and solar dome home.
Don't forget to submit your photos to our CU photo-sharing website. Your favorite moments could become famous on our homepage!
Building a pantry is a great way to store your groceries and home produce.
Tell us about your all-time favorite fix-it tool.
Delicious, nutritious quinoa gives nutty goodness to this summer dish that takes advantage of tomatoes, corn and eggplants--summer vegetables at their best.
Perfect for spring, this pasta dish can be made with the spring herbs that are popping up in your garden or market and a little leftover wine (either red or white will do).
Trying to interpret and understand scientific reports and their failure to come to a consensus.
A beginning farmer learns that keeping does and keeping bucks are two different things.
The DOE and NREL released a study outlining ways to build grocery stories and medium-sized businesses that need 50 percent less energy.
In partnership with the Department of Energy, Chevrolet offers free home charging stations to 4,400 owners of its newest electric car, the Volt.
Adult males and post-menopausal women are quite likely to suffer from health problems caused by excessively high levels of iron in the blood. Donating blood is the safest and most useful way to deal with this potential problem.
To counteract life's stresses and strains, to slow down the pace of life, stop and smell the roses...or any flower. In the absence of flowers, you'll find another way to bring a smile to your face, the songs of birds.
Every once in a while we need to rebel against the machines. Hand a towel to your significant other and ask him to dry while you rinse. Sweep the floor with a real broomcorn broom. Have a real conversation. Enjoy things happening slowly.
Three nuclear reactors in Japan have been destroyed by a 9.0 earthquake. Radiation levels are on the rise. The world watches helplessly, wondering if escaping radiation will eventually find its way to them. Are we not witnessing in Japan the dark side of nuclear energy? It is not that hard to see this happening in United States, is it?
This picture will bring a smile to your face and make you think of your own family pet.
With a well-designed dog pack, you can take your dog to the farmer's market and your pet won't mind helping you carry a few groceries.
Manure-spreading day is a big event on the farm, for everyone from the chickens to the border collies. And it's part of a wonderful seasonal cycle that's the foundation of self-reliance and sustainability.
Teaching a farm dog — a livestock guard dog — which animals to protect and which animals not to isn't an easy task. Learn about the protector/protectee animal relationships at Rancho Cappuccino, and about how the Rancho guard animals are taught to protect their charges.
Cam is mourning the loss of his beloved dog Morgan.
Black pepper, the king of spices, has been part of Indian cooking and medicinal traditions for thousands of years, and now sits next to almost every saltshaker on countless tables across North America. Find out black pepper's medicinal and culinary uses in this post.
Black and Decker.com provides project advice, community features and much more.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares her New Year's resolution for 2014: buying food directly from farmers.
A beginning farmer loses a friend and finds that solitary farming isn't all it's cracked up to be.
Stony Knolls Farm has a new dog and getting him here was a wonderful, and amazing journey that is well worth sharing! Rescue dogs are so grateful for their new homes.
When you celebrate Meatless Monday with hearty, savory Mushroom Bread Pudding, no one will miss the meat.
Cobbler is not the only solution to a bumper crop of berries. If you can boil water, you can turn the juice from big-flavor berries into tasty beverages that are naturally rich in vitamins and antioxidants. Make extra juice to freeze or can for year-round enjoyment.
In this posting we discuss why the Arctic sea ice is melting at a record rate. We also discuss how global warming is triggering this sea ice melt and the potential consequences to the Arctic.
A new guide-to-meat book.
Cole discusses the challenges faced by organic meat raisers, as well as the health benefits of consuming organic meats.
Advice on how to get the most tender and flavorful meat from your chickens.
Rabbit is delicious and extremely good for you.
Empty nesters Ed and Joan Kobrinski downsized their lifestyle and moved to a smaller home where they could grow more vegetables. "We've learned to enjoy and appreciate living comfortably and contentedly with less," Ed says.
Sue McKay Miller divested herself of nearly everything she owned and moved into a yurt in the wilderness to determine how much she really needs to live a satisfying life. Turns out, she really doesn't need much.
Tender slices of grass-fed flank steak have an out-of-this-world flavor, which is perfectly complimented by this flank steak marinade featuring mirin and maple syrup.
Just because the package says “local,” doesn't guarantee that it is.
Cornish cross and heritage chickens are two types of chickens often used for meat. There’s considerable debate about which tastes better, which is easier to raise and which is more “ethical.”
Instructions for building a cold smoker (and three other things you can do with steel oil drums).
The Gourmet Butcher explains the best ways to re-heat red meats.
It's a challenge to describe the place where I take my livestock when it's time for them to cease being my companions, and to become my product instead. I call Steve's Meats in DeSoto, Kansas, the "packer." And, indeed, when I stopped off there this morning they had about 800 pounds of beef frozen and packed, ready for me to take home. It filled the freezer to the rim.
DIY sprouting experiment to get kids interested in growing and eating sprouts.
At least four major beef recalls due to E. coli tainted meat occurred in 2010. A substantial percentage of the meat was certified organic. With these beef scares in mind, the fact that Grist readers voted hamburgers as the second scariest food of 2010 comes as no surprise.
Getting prepared for cold weather is quite an undertaking with daylight growing shorter and shorter. Adding to your herd and selling goats takes a lot of planning.
Small-scale local meat producers are teaming up with mobile slaughterhouses to make local meat more sustainable, accessible and affordable
Share your spring seasonal recipes for the month of May.
We would like all our food to be grown locally, but when it's too cold to grow outside, we often rely on what we've stored from the previous season. Calzones offer one more way to cook with stored food.
Cam has had to learn lots of new skills living in his off-grid home!
Who the heck is Paul Goodman? The car-free visionary who inspired a new documentary and bicycle contest.
I love my two-story log cabin, which combines recycled and an array of green building materials.
This initial blog post tells the story of how Phillip Vannini became interested in off-grid living and how he began — together with Jonathan Taggart — to do research on the off-grid lifestyle in Canada.
In this blog post we describe the choices we made in producing and editing our film, "Life Off Grid."
You can be harvesting from your garden all year long, including through the winter months! It's time to plant the fall garden.
Prepping for major emergencies - earthquakes, floods, tornadoes - is important, but so is emergency planning for less dramatic events. Find out what you can do to reduce the potential for stress.
Try these easy and unique homemade gifts--from your kitchen and from nature--for your loved ones this year.
Build your own wood-fired earth oven for baking fluffier, more flavorful bread and other baked delights.
Done with flimsy, store-bought tomato cages that fall over when the wind blows? Build long-lasting, heavy-duty tomato cages to fit your garden with one of our four plans.
Handmade candies are always better than store-bought. If you're a fan of the peanut butter-and-chocolate combination, mix up these delicious little truffles.
Second in a series of blog posts about how to convert a lawn mower or other gasoline small engine to run on propane.
Learn how to make a pinwheel for a fun, outdoors toy.
Homesteading with dogs in remote mountain living. Considerations in providing a good safe homestead environment for your cherished pets.
Coping with SARDS (sudden acquired retinal degeneration) in dogs and practical ways to help a blind dog.
Beware of what you use in your garden! Cocoa bean mulch may cause serious gastrointestinal problems for dogs, if eaten in large amounts.
Feel protected in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week! Plus, learn more about guard dogs and Great Pyrenees dogs.
Watch Dogs That Changed the World on PBS this Sunday to learn more about where or what your beloved pet came from.
As tick and flea season approaches, Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence won’t be dousing her dog, Rug, in flea medicine or attaching a flea collar because she knows that these can be harmful—both for Rug and for her. Flea collars often contain tetrachlorvinphos (TCVP) or propoxur, which can jeopardize Rug’s immune system and leave damaging lifelong effects.
No homestead is complete without our canine companions.
The right dog can be a very useful member of the family when you are growing corn!
Taking time to just have fun and enjoy life in the face of serious living.
Livestock guardian dogs are renowned for their protective instincts. They have been bred for thousands of years to be aware, work independently and to protect their charges at all costs. But do they also break up fights between quarreling livestock?
A comforting herb-baked macaroni makes for a simple meal on a short winter night.
In this blog, I highlight the earliest decisions I had to make to create a net zero energy home: how I was going to build the foundation and walls. Thermal bridging, air tightness, insulation, cost, and greeness are all key deciders.
This article describes an alternative roof design for those building in areas without building codes. A little extra effort working with poles will reward you with a stunningly beautiful wood ceiling and superinsulated roof at very reasonable cost.
Building the Cadillac of worm bins, a new barn door, testing the new garlic curing rack, harvesting big potato onions, mulching blueberries, and fabricating a low budget easy to build automatic chicken coop door opener and closer from easy find parts
For many of us here in the Ozarks the harvesting of black walnuts in October has become not only a way to make extra money, but a timeless tradition.
The first in this month's series of excerpts from the "Fierce Farming Women" chapter of "The Color of Food" book — honoring Women's Month in March.
Going meatless is a breeze when corn is at its late-summer best and the garden is bursting with squashes. Southwestern calabacitas is a delicious, hearty summer stew that makes the most of this bountiful season.
This Meatless Monday, whip up a batch of Julia Butterfly Hill's Top Anything Sauce, made with peanut or almond butter, and make a meal out of fresh veggies and quinoa.
Creamy, delicious Parsnip Flan with Roasted Beets takes advantage of the last of the stored winter vegetables. Pair it with fresh spring greens for a wonderful spring meal.
Michael Morley is posting regular updates about his progress building a unique green home with structural insulated panels (SIPs). Here he talks about HVAC work and installing windows.
Otterbine Barebo Inc. expands their Air Flo 2 diffused air system product line by releasing 2-dome and 1-dome diffuser manifold options to the original 4-dome option.
Live in a dome home in this week’s Photo of the Week. Remember to submit your own pictures, and you could be the next Photo of the Week!
James E. Churchill’s advice for finding and preparing chicory, mint, catnip and blackberries, found in a 1970 issue of Mother Earth News, is timeless—and very timely right now.
The babies have arrived, now is the time to take care of all of the other parts of caring for the newborns!
The kids have finally arrived, and we have plenty of photos of them!
Rewarding volunteer efforts involving German Shepherd Rescue.
For those of us who hate to use chemicals in our gardens, in our homes, or with our livestock and pets, diatomaceous earth may be a safe and efficient substitute. It may worm your animals, rid them of fleas and lice and even handle indoor pests.
How a born and bred city boy came to leave Detroit, start a Tennessee homestead with his wife, and blog about it here.
There is no “one size fits all” bunch of information that works every time in every location, every person, and for every goat.
Pigs can be a great source of healthy and humanely-raised meat in an urban setting thriving on the leftovers of humanity.
Butcher and meat expert Cole Ward gives a simple explanation of what "meat" actually is.
A brief description of what happens after slaughter.
If you’ve always wondered how to make sausage at home, this primer will get you started in sausage making.
How do folks get from city dwellers to homesteaders? Annie Warmke interviews Carie Starr, owner of Cherokee Valley Bison Ranch in Central Ohio.
Composting doesn't need to be complicated. It's time to throw out the guide book and start letting nature take its course. Meat? No problem. Bread? Don't worry about it. Human waste? Why not? It's easy!
"The Rabbit-Raising Problem Solver" by Karen Patry will answer your questions about rabbit housing, feeding, behavior, health care, breeding and kindling.
Cole's tips for the best stew meat, and his favorite burger recipe. Plus a chance to win a free Gourmet Butcher DVD!
My journey and some of the challenges I experienced with the farm-to-table method. The struggles I faced while raising meat in order to eat more ethically and sustainably.
Cole remembers some of the not-so-great things he saw in supermarket meat departments.
There are many reasons to raise meat rabbits: meat, fertilizer, breeding capacity, small space required, pelts and more.
HOMEGROWN blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel outlines strategies for responsible drought gardening in her home state of California--or anywhere.
This week of my Polyface Farm summer internship included a forestry lesson from Joel Salatin, installing my first fence, and the introduction of Polyface’s new guardian dog puppy, Cody!
Recipe for Southern-style shrimp and grits, made with superb Floriani Red Flint grain corn.
How we prepared and ate all the meat of the goat Caleb raised and butchered.
Steve Maxwell spotlights the three myths that prevent people from realizing the full value of the self reliant lifestyle, and how to dispel them
When you live in an off-grid house in the country, it's important to be handy!
With resources from Mother Nature, you can make natural and beautiful homegrown holiday gifts.
You can upcycle (make crafts from recycled materials) to beautifuly and simplify your world! Have a few old T-shirts that are past their prime? Make them into a rosette pillow! Use homemade recycled paper to send friends and family chic, personalized greetings cards. Overrun with stuff to recycle? Transform tin can lids into a melodious windchime! Have fun and get creative turning your old stuff into treasures!
Learn how to make soap with Robin Bedford of Possum Hollow Farm Soap.
Chris Lubkemann of Fox Chapel Publishing will present a workshop on whittling at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Mike Orr of Fox Chapel Publishing will present a workshop on homemade instruments at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, September 24-25, 2011 in Seven Springs, Pa.
Kiko Denzer of Hand Print Press will present a workshop and demonstration on modern homesteading, do-it-yourself building with mud at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
How does one eat more of the right types of seafood to reap all the health benefits without going bald? Choose local!
As farmers markets open across the country, here are 10 good reasons to get out and support your local farmers. (The freshest seasonal food is just a part of it.)
Life on a family farm is never dull and full of surprises to keep a farmer on their toes.
Tips on how to dispose of pet waste properly for National Dog Day!
Keep your pet safe by learning the dangers posed by certain flea- and tick-control products.
The benefits of adopting a pet. And the sadness that occurs when they die.
HealthyCoat offers high quality and a highly digestible source of Omega 3 & 6 essential fatty acids, Vitamin E and Lecithin, fortified with Niacin, Biotin and Vitamin B12.
After the kidding is over, we take good care of our girls! And, the babies need to be bottle fed, so here are the instructions on how we feed our kids.
In more shocking news about the honey on U.S. store shelves, a Food Safety News study analyzes more than 60 jars of honey and finds that nearly all of them have been ultra-filtered to disguise their potentially tainted and toxic origins.
Grapes can grow anywhere, thriving in a variety of climates and soil types. Growing grapes is rewarding, because after a few years they produce abundant fruit and quickly provide architectural interest in the edible landscape.
Popcorn is easy to grow and makes an attractive and delicious alternative to sweet corn, especially in a small garden. Kids will love the cute little ears, and adults will treasure the superior flavor of homegrown popcorn. Plant in late spring.
A brief summary of the vast amount of data we've compiled over the last few years on experimenting with rotational chicken pastures on our homestead.
“The Cleaner Plate Club” co-author Beth Bader shares an adventure to the farmers market with her daughter, her “eat local” food values, and her recipe for Lemongrass Tomato Soup.
Rich, creamy Parmesan and Brie Polenta is a Meatless Monday meal fit for a king.
Chef Gordon Hamersley's Vegetable Tian makes use of tomatoes, squash and eggplant--all in their prime right now.
This fresh spring soup is rich and creamy without the heaviness of cream.
If fiddlehead ferns are popping up in your local market or local woods, grab them while you can. Incorporate this fabulous, fleeting spring treat into a fresh, slightly tangy pasta dish for Meatless Monday.
Ann Harvey Yonkers, founder of Washington, D.C.'s FreshFarm Markets co-op, nests eggs in a bed of wilted fresh greens for a delicious meatless summertime brunch or dinner.
These recipes with filling, protein-packed whole grains such as quinoa and millet are great options for no-meat or low-meat diets.
Readers share their best ideas for saving money on meat and their recipes for almost meatless, flexitarian meals.
Whip up this delicious vegetable-based soup tonight. You'll never miss the chicken.
If spring is giving you peas, it's best to eat them right away before their sugars degrade. Here's how to whip them up into a wonderful spring soup.
Black winter storage radishes can be roasted with bright, pink radishes to create a warming vegetable side dish best served atop of bed of crunchy salad greens.
Is your patio short on space? Check out the Hot Pot BBQ, a grill that doubles as an herb planter.
If you have black walnuts to shell, you need a heavy duty nutcracker. The Master Nut Cracker will do the job.
Follow these simple guidelines to make the most of your small space: contain clutter, find furnishings do double-duty, and make maximum use of color and light.
Fired up our smoker for the first time and made yummy use of our summer's Kokanee Fish Catch to smoke fish.
Preserving meat at home by making pork confit.
Cole explains the term "dark cutter" as it applies to the effect of stress on meat animals, and eventually, its affect on consumers.
Cole takes you through the first steps in learning to cut your own meat - sourcing.
Meat, eggs and dairy from grass-fed animals provide superior nutrition. Join our nutrition testing program for proof you can use.
The further degradation of our societal food skills are examined here, with small town food craftsmen becoming an endangered species, in this case, my local butcher.
A report on the potato onion taste test and some details on the annual tomato harvest and storage methods along with digging up ragweed plants.
Roses are easy to grow successfully if you follow a few guidelines: provide good air circulation around the canes and keep the plants clean and not too damp. Roses come in many forms, including bush or shrub, climbing, and miniature.
Introducing the serviceberry, a beautiful landscape tree or shrub suitable in much of North America, to the edible landscape. Serviceberry -- or sarvis -- comes in many regional forms and produces edible berries.
In support of the Obama Administration's all-of-the-above energy strategy, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced Nov. 19, 2012, 10 small business-led projects to speed solar energy innovation from the lab to the marketplace.
Skip the steaks if you're firing up the barbecue tonight. Marinated and grilled veggies and tofu, served up with wasabi mayo on grilled bread, is a hearty, delicious way to celebrate Meatless Monday.
Celebrate Meatless Monday with this sweet, tangy spring risotto.
Sauteed spring greens and mushrooms dress up polenta in this nutritious, satisfying main dish.
The Classy Coop Giveaway grand prize was given a good home with our contest winner and her backyard chickens. We were happy to see this mobile chicken coop is already being broken in. Bring on the eggs!
Describes two effective alternatives to composting. Many factors can limit the ability to produce compost. These two products offer different but practical ways to organically recycle food scraps.
Try a vegetarian version of traditional Hoppin John for good luck this New Year's day.
Simran Sethi learns how to compost the right way and explores her composting options.
First in a series of blog posts which will cover conversion of lawnmowers and small engines from gasoline to propane.
James discusses exactly how to paint a beehive. Sometimes it can be a fiddly job but using an array of stepladders and poles it can be pretty simple
Don't throw away the Peeps left at the bottom of your Easter basket. They're the building blocks of many good projects.
Soapmaker Anne-Marie Faiola will present a workshop on soapmaking and Dr. Andrew Iverson will presenet a workshop on natural health at the Mother Earth News Fair, an annual sustainability festival, June 4-5, 2011 in Puyallup, Wash.
Bill McKibben is doing a national tour to raise awareness about climate change and to build a movement around changing the way we use energy.
After the snow leaves to do list for us.
Use old maps to wallpaper a room, shade a window, create a scrapbook, and other useful household crafts.
Boy! Did I learn my lesson when I left our young pullets out back with our trusted dogs. I'll never do that again.
How and why we chose to have a livestock guardian dog and what they are like.
Earth Days, a poignant, 2009 Sundance Film Fesitval success, will premier on Facebook April 11, and on the PBS Network April 19.
When autumn brings a glut of orchard fruits, capture the goodness as juice by cooking extraction or cold pressing. Juices can be used alone or mixed to produce sweet or hard ciders, wines, syrups, and more.
Growing some of the most delicious and sometimes expensive gourmet vegetables doesn't have to be hard. Artichoke, bronze fennel, kohlrabi, leek, and savoy cabbage are among the vegetables that grow well from seed.
Keeping feeder pigs over the summer is a good way to use garden leftovers and produce great tasting home-grown pork!
Cole Ward - AKA The Gourmet Butcher - introduces himself
Hog butchering was a common farm chore done in the early winter. It provided much of the family's meat in the wintertime. It provides healthful food, exercise and a wonderful experience of community.
The tale of Carlotta's last day. A trip to the processor. Real happenings on a goat farm, it's not always lollipops and rainbows.
Getting ready for Goat School is always a daunting task, but once all of our new friends start arriving, we get excited! What a great time learning all about goats!
I don't get grossed out very easy - but this special cut of beef made me cringe!
Life really is good when you live on a dirt road.
Julia Butterfly Hill understands the need for extreme measures when it comes to environmental activism. In the late 1990s, she spent 738 days living in a redwood tree named Luna, to bring attention to the plight of the world’s ancient forests. Through her vigil, she negotiated to permanently protect the 1,000 year-old tree and a nearly three- acre buffer zone. She says that our forks are also powerful change agents.
“I love food!” Hill told Natural Home & Garden. “I love preparing meals that are both decadently delicious and happily healthy. I’m a joyous vegan, and I celebrate how fabulous this lifestyle is for my body, my world, my planet, and for the animals as well.”
Hill eats animal-free food that’s organic, local, in season, and free of added junk—food that she calls “a celebration of life.” Her recipe for delicious vegan lasagna takes about a half hour to prepare and provides plenty of opportunity for interpretation. If you don’t have fresh herbs on hand, substitute 1 teaspoon each of the dried herbs or 2 tablespoons Italian Seasoning.
Make homegrown tomatoes the star of tonight’s dinner by whipping up Marcella Hazan’s Tomato Sauce with Butter and Onion. Made with just three ingredients, this sweet, rich sauce is a classic.
Fusion Bread Salad makes use of the cherry tomatoes and basil that are prime right now--and you don't have to heat up the kitchen to make this hearty, nutritious main dish.
Sorting through seed catalogs is one of the most entertaining tasks we have here at MOTHER EARTH NEWS. These garden seed catalogs come in handy when searching for just the right variety of heirloom veggies to grow, and they're fun to look at too!
The U.S. Department of Energy released a set of pumpkin-carving stencils celebrating Halloween through alternative energy.
The unintended death of a charming little creature raises the realities of life on a farm homestead.
describing the upcoming fun photo contest with the theme being chickens and the fun they either have or give. Figs and more figs are at the heart of the obsession.
Tackling the old wives tale I heard recently down at the hardware store how a penny inserted into the flesh of a tomato plant stalk will help that plant fight off or maybe prevent a blight attack along with data on trying to trap a wild rabbit.
A few months back I heard a comment on an NPR radio program that really caught my attention. The program was about the local food movement and at one point the guest on the show said, “Now remember - just because it’s local doesn’t necessarily mean it has a smaller carbon footprint. That Argentinian apple that was shipped on a barge with thousands of tons of other apples may actually have required less fuel per apple than the apple than came from a few hundred miles away in the back on a farmer’s pickup.”
Vermont farmer Walter Jeffries details all the cuts of meat on a pig, as well as many other uses of the animal, from working the soil to providing delicious lard for baked goods.
Simran Sethi looks back at her New Year's resolution: to nourish herself.
The roundwood truss system described here enables DIYers to build their own trusses at very low cost. You can gather truckloads of poles from national forests, enough for several small houses, for the cost of one $25 firewood permit.
Summing up pasture data where it relates to chickens and customizing land to better suit poultry and their behavior and stomachs. Measuring oil viscosity levels and rescuing a trailer with a portable winch were some of our favorite things.
The New York Times reports our carbon emissions in 2011 were the highest on record. Reduce your family's carbon footprint by choosing vegetarian recipes such as Fennel and Leek Soup and Delicata Squash Stuffed with Wild Mushrooms and Herbs.
Eggs aren't the only things that come from the business end of a chicken. But with a little time and materials, and even less ingenuity, the rest can set you up with a free and steady supply of valuable organic fertilizer.
One of our most common grasses is limiting the bobwhite quail population, killing broodmares and their foals, rotting cow hooves, and cutting milk production.
There's honey in the hive, peaches on the trees, and food on the table, but it's still a long way from self-sufficiency.