free range chickens
Advice on how to find eggs that are truly healthy and humanely raised.
If you're looking for eggs with the highest nutrient content, seek out eggs from pastured poultry. Here's why these eggs are the healthiest, as well as more information for people who want to raise birds on pasture.
Advice from a sustainable farming expert on how to get started with livestock on a small piece of land.
Real life experiences with chickens spanning a 50 year period.
Some of the downside of free ranging your chickens.
How both we and the chickens have gotten better at surviving the cold winters where we live.
Like many things related to food, the free-range label misleads customers, so we explore the differences between free-range and pasture-raised.
Short stories about our chicken experiences
Geoff Taylor remembers a quality discussion with his cat, in which the amazing benefits of owning free-range chickens are the primary topic.
More than half a billion eggs possibly tainted with salmonella bacteria have been recalled. Avoid the scare by purchasing free-range, cage-free, organic and locally sourced eggs.
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.
Free-range, backyard eggs are better for your health and your ethics.
Discover the difference between the labels "free range" and "pastured" when it comes to eggs and chicken meat.
Labels on commercial foods are difficult to decipher and misleading. For healthful food, healthy bodies, healthy communities and planet, we need to grow and purchase our food locally.
This Thanksgiving consider opting for a pastured turkey instead of a commercially raised bird, and think about buying local Thanksgiving foods, too.
The results of our latest nutrition tests show that eggs from hens raised on pasture (true free-range eggs) exceed commercially raised eggs in vitamin D content.
Here's a quick and easy tip for freezing peaches.
Simple suggestions on preserving vegetables and herbs
Preserving herbs from your garden is easy, whether you freeze or dry them.
Ben & Jerry's teams up with Greenpeace to bring the U.S. a cleaner way of freezing food, especially ice cream.
Ben & Jerry's teams up with Greenpeace to bring the U.S. a cleaner way of freezing food, especially ice cream.
Use freezer-damaged fruit to make tasty fruit sauces.
Use this simple technique to preserve your bounty of fresh summer peppers.
Is your garden providing you with zucchini overload? Ilene White Freedman offers some tips and recipes to keep it bounty, rather than burden.
Learn how to request your “closed” complete pesticide complaint file from the State agency through the Freedom of Information Act.
Curtis Industries LLC has introduced a new addition to its line of cab systems for the Polaris Ranger. The new PathPro SS cab system for the Polaris Ranger 800 Crew UTV offers functionality, versatility and value.
Since getting the homestead functional, we have focused on food - local producers, access to food and ways to educate and communicate. This blog describes a couple of my useful and favorite organizations, Slow Food and the Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.
Giving yourself a quiet space for retreat and reflection helps nurture quiet, calm and peace.
Protecting the fig tree for the winter felt like putting it to bed for a long sleep. Chopping wood with the Chopper 1 is a thing of joy and beauty and that's no joke. Do it yourself corn bin helped our neighbor keep the racoons out.
Here is an easier way to blanche vegetables, such as green beans, before freezing them.
Sarah is a friend to the farm who taught Ilene Freedman how to make "Farm Chi." Farm Chi is Sarah’s version of kimchi, fermented mixed vegetables from the seasonal farm harvest.
If you are challenged by growing carrots, you might consider transplanting them and growing some dancing carrots.
Baby greenhouse plants are spring babies too, just like the birth of baby animals. Here’s a way to keep them warm in the hoophouse.
Chickens love green feeds, such as grass, clover and alfalfa. You can preserve grass or other crops for winter by making silage in garbage bags or other small plastic bags. Small scale silage production is easy, and you don’t need to invest in special equipment, plus your chickens will have green feed all winter long.
Poultry expert Robert Plamonden explains how you can save some cash by offering poultry whole corn or wheat to supplement their usual feed.
Keeping a few chickens for eggs is easy. Start right with advice from an expert.
Chickens make fun pets. Some people are even making sweaters, hats and diapers for them.
Deciding on and finding the best breeds of chickens for you.
Some hens lay lots of eggs, but never sit on them to hatch them. If you want a hen to hatch eggs, is there anything you can do to encourage her to sit on the eggs? We asked our poultry advisory group about their experiences. They had good advice about what will work and what does not.
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.
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.
Electric car battery range is worse in cold weather: A drop of just 10 degrees could theoretically sap up to 50 percent of a battery’s charge.
Springtime happiness can be measured by the sweetness of your strawberry patch.
It takes a few good rationalizations to get through the busiest part of the growing season.
Making garlic powder is easy, and a good way to preserve a crop of split garlic.
Curing sweet potatoes so their starches turn to sugars; plus my three favorite recipes.
Growing corn early by transplanting may be unconventional, but its a great way to beat the challenges and...eat corn in July!
I cure my spring fever by planting in a hoop house.
Echinacea tincture is easy to make. Getting through the psychological inertia might be the hard part of the process.
Making your own spice mix is a quick, easy DIY project. Ilene White Freedman shares her chili powder DIY project woes. Learn from her discoveries before you start your batch.
Gluten-free baking is becoming more popular all the time, even among people who don’t suffer from Celiac disease. With all the new gluten-free desserts and other products on the market, which are some of the best (or at least good) products? The editors of Mother Earth News sampled several new gluten-free products.
Organic Architect's Eric Corey Freed shows designers what green really means during Dining by Design, a charity event featuring tabletop installations in New York.
Not enough hours in the day? Want to make tomato sauce but are short on time? Use this recipe to make great-tasting tomato sauce (using frozen tomatoes)at your leisure. Perfect for pressure canning and delicious!
Cam contemplates the amount of energy that goes into our food production and shows how he prepared corn for freezing the zero carbon way!
The author devises an inexpensive and very effective way to block cold winter winds from blowing into her kitchen via her range vents.
As a start on my adventure towards the Gluten Free Challenge in May, I've discovered the deliciousness of whole-grain, gluten-free crusts.
How to measure tomato seedlings for success before planting into your garden.
A first look at the newest vegetable crops in the garden before the CSA harvests begin.
After a long trial-and-error process, Ilene White Freedman finally found a sustainable, weed-suppressing mulching system for her farm.
Transforming a crock full of cucumbers into old-fashioned dill pickles is a bit of magic.
Ilene Freedman and her family reshaped their Chanukah tradition to feature family activities instead of presents.
Candlemas is an ancient midwinter holiday, when people would take inventory on their stock of candles, pantry food storage and hay in the barn to get the homestead through the second half of winter.
Ilene White Freedman celebrates with her friends at their homestead-warming, after over two years of living in a trailer while renovating a dilapidated house. Their restoration includes the original logs and stone kitchen of a historic cabin. Some uninvited guests from the farm’s livestock take a house tour too.
Ilene White Freedman contemplates sharing goat milk with the nursing kid.
Ilene White Freedman’s goat is in labor, reminding Ilene of her own natural childbirth experiences.
Wintertime for a farmer is full of projects and planning.
Learn how to take garlic as medicine — garlic is a potent natural antibiotic and immune-booster.
Canning won't heat up your house when you set up your own portable outdoor canning kitchen.
It took a year for Ilene White Freedman to make homegrown, homemade Ancho-Chili Powder. Find out how she did it.
A bombilla is a Latin American tea straw used to drink yerba mate. Why not use it to enjoy all kinds of loose herbal teas? Ilene White Freedman shares a story, a tea recipe and links to others recipes.
How to make candles you can really light from the peel of Clementine oranges. A wintertime craft...just oil and an orange peel!
A travel log of our family's mission to find local food sources on our trip to Puerto Rico.
Cooking meals on a vacation can be easy. Bring some essential items with you and enjoy homecooking, on vacation.
This collection of rare and historic poultry books offers an amazing amount of information on poultry.
If you are keeping a small flock of chickens in your backyard or on a small acreage, which breeds have you come to admire and why?
Lots of factors are involved in hatching poultry eggs successfully: consistent temperature, the right amount of humidity and frequently turning the eggs. Not all incubators work equally well, and some have features that make operating them easier. Read about our most recent incubator test.
Bob Berry owns a small hatchery business that specializes in two old breeds of chickens. He offers suggestions for incubating eggs and starting chicks that are shipped through the mail.
Hatching eggs using natural or artificial incubation is great fun, but there are no guarantees. Things can go wrong with either system.
Instead of using a heat lamps to brood just a few chicks, consider using a broody hen to do the job. This system takes less time to manage and uses no fossil fuels!
Discuss the strange and mysterious ways of broody hens. Plus, the Community Chickens project will be hatching duck eggs!
Lots of people order hatching eggs that are shipped through the mail before setting them in an incubator or under a broody hen. But what kind of results should you expect from shipped hatching eggs? Read what an expert has to say about realistic expectations.
Many people who keep chickens or other poultry have concerns about how to manage their flock when cold weather sets in. But winter shouldn’t be a problem for your flock, but rather a steppingstone to the following year! Check your poultry often, follow these guidelines and you can even raise baby chicks in the winter! Tips from an expert.
Valerie of City|Life|Eats shares her tips for gluten-free lunches and snacks on the go.
Bike-Free Day happens all over the world on Sept. 22. Grist is challenging the US to rise to the occasion and celebrate with the global community this Saturday.
American wealth and influence are often attributed to free enterprise and the personal liberty promised in the Constitution. While it’s true they've been conducive to economic success, we also had an enormous head start in the race to dominate the industrial revolution - with our sparsely populated continent packed with natural resources. The question is, how well will our free enterprise system work in a world with far fewer resources?
Many people living with gluten intolerance, wheat allergies or Celiac disease are often left without many standard snack options. The MOTHER EARTH NEWS editorial team samples and reviews organic, gluten-free foods to find some yummy, gluten-free snack products.
We frequently use the term "homesteading" in Mother Earth News, but what is it's exact meaning?
Natural hair care products are a great substitute for chemical-heavy beauty brands, but you shouldn’t have to break the bank to get healthy hair. Learn about life without store-bought shampoo, how to create your own natural shampoo and conditioner and what it takes to make your head happy, both outside and in.
Our expert gives advice on finding the best chicken breed for free-range eggs.
Finding out how much manure an average chicken produces is a challenge.
Try these six tips to prevent chickens from eating their eggs.
If you raise free-range poultry, you're likely to lose some birds to predators, but you can minimize your losses. Here are some tips that can help protect your chickens from hawks and owls.
Chickens can handle the cold, but you might need to evaluate their water access.
It’s time to get serious about heritage chickens. Talking Chicken is a wonderful resource to help you build a flock. The book covers selection, breeding, raising and marketing heritage chickens and eggs. Poultry experts from around the country have contributed short pieces that are interspersed throughout the book to round out the information.
Chicken eggs usually hatch on the 21st day of incubation, but this hen hatched two chicks on the 23rd day.
Some breeds of chickens are better at ranging for their own feed, hatching eggs and raising chicks. Others mature quickly or lay particularly dark-brown eggs. Which breed has the combination of traits you’re looking for? We’ve launched a new survey to determine the characteristics of each breed of chicken.
Modern, commercial hybrid hens lay 300 to 320 eggs a year, and they consume less feed. Will using the same high-production strains of chickens in cage-free environment cause more cannibalism? There are several rational methods of raising chickens.
Nothing says spring like the sound of newly hatched chickens in my incubators. It's the time of year when folks stop into the feed store or local hatchery expecting to begin their selection of new birds.
Chickens who begin life as housepets don't take kindly to being banished to the outdoors. What is the likelihood of indoor hens producing fresher, tastier eggs?
I was wrong about Freedom Rangers. Freedom Rangers are pretty close to Cornish Cross chickens. The Freedom Rangers did well on pasture, and we had a pretty broad range of sizes in the flock. I’m satisfied with the efficiency and the cost, but I’m disappointed the growth rate was so fast that it caused leg problems.
Catching and moving chickens is a cinch if you train them from the start and use these chicken-catching tips.
If you’re planning to buy a small backyard chicken coop to protect a few hens, you might be interested in this coop from GardenEggs.com.
I tested a new incubator against my old Styrofoam incubator. Find out which one is the best for incubating duck eggs. The difference was amazing.
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.”
We’re trying out several incubators with chicken, duck and quail hatching eggs.
The Community Chickens project is about sharing the joy of keeping poultry and spreading the knowledge to help people successfully raise chickens, ducks and other poultry. Here’s a summary of some things we’ve learned through the project.
We’re testing incubators, equipment and feed for the Community Chickens project.
Does turning eggs frequently during incubation improve hatch rates? Can storing the eggs before incubating them lower the hatch rate? Find out what we learned from our experiment hatching pheasant eggs.
Hens that lay white eggs are lighter weight and eat less feed to produce the same amount of eggs as brown-egg layers. So, does that mean that if you’re concerned about conserving resources and care about the environment, you should eat white chicken eggs instead of brown chicken eggs? Color is only shell deep. There’s more to this debate than meets the eye.
We dipped candles from our hive's beeswax to celebrate winter. Candlemaking is a nice seasonal craft. Here’s how we did it, plus some tips to get you started.
Small towns across the country in need of a population boost are literally giving away free land to attract new residents and boost their populations. Seekers of the quiet (and low-cost) small town lifestyle can now grab some free land to build their homes.
You can live a joyful gluten-free life! Through this blog, Wendy Gregory Kaho and other gluten-free experts will share their firsthand experiences and favorite tips for living well with celiac disease. The blog will regularly feature gluten-free foods and recipes, cookbooks, Internet resources, and much more.
Shirley Braden shares a recipe for a quick and easy gluten-free pot pie.
Did you buy or build a home without going into debt? We're looking for stories on homes built with a small mortgage, or no mortgage at all. Here's what we want to know.
Our thoughts on the gluten free, dairy free, soy free desserts from RawCreations.
Finding healthy, gluten-free meals can be a challenge at catered events and restaurants. Share your tips for gluten-free eating out, and find sources in your area!
Columbia Forest Products, one of the nation’s largest hardwood manufacturers, connects consumers to green-mind manufacturers of formaldehyde-free products using its PureBond Fabricator Network.
The new Goodweave certification label for rugs maintains RugMark International’s stringent child labor-free policy.
A review of Elana Amsterdam's Gluten-Free Cupcakes.
The Gluten-Free Homemaker, Linda Etherton shares quick, healthy, gluten-free, pressure cooker meals.
Gluten-free and grain-free breakfast ideas to start your day right.
A recipe for gluten-free pot pie with a crust by Jeanne Sauvage of the blog Art of Gluten-Free Baking.
Gluten-free muffin recipes to get your morning started.
Make gluten-free energy bars at home for busy mornings when there's no time for breakfast.
The Gluten and Allergen Free Expo provides a chance to be inspired and energized by the most passionate and creative gluten-free cookbook authors and bloggers.
Learn how to pinch back basil tops for a particularly bushy plant, then make delicious pesto with your harvest.
The hoophouse on our farm is filled with greens all winter long. It’s almost hard to switch gears for summer tomatoes.
Chickens - how do you know if you’re the ‘chicken type’? If you’re pondering a backyard flock, there are a few questions you need to ask yourself.
Learn the essential stages of chicken processing in this video guide that covers equipment, humane killing methods, plucking, eviscerating and everything you need to know to begin butchering chickens.
Richmond, Virginia, legalized chickens in 2013. Since then, cities and towns have joined in legalizing family flock. The organizers of the Richmond Home and Garden Show (one of the largest on the East Coast) wanted to feature chickens and offered us free booth space.
Learn how chickens and gardens make a great mix.
Introducing our new chickens.
Sign up to attend a free poultry webinar on the topic of starting a backyard flock.
There are advantages to keeping track of the cost of keeping chickens as well as the benefits. Here's a cost/benefit analysis from our own experience.
An enthusiastic family helps a rare breed of chickens settle into their new home, thanks to MOTHER EARTH NEWS and American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.
Rich and fudgy Grain-Free Chocolate-Date-Nut Bars are a grain-free, dairy-free, and refined-sweetener-free treat you can splurge on with a smile.
Whether you abstain from dairy by choice or you’re lactose intolerant, you probably know how difficult it can be to find really great non-dairy cheese. I’ve taken away some of the guesswork by reviewing some popular brands: Vegan Gourmet, Daiya, Dr-Cow, Chreese and The Vegetarian Express. Read about my dairy-free cheese experiences, and let us know which brands you’re loyal to.
Find out how to pack a litter-free lunch using a lunchopolis lunchbox by Enviro Products. The lunchbox containers are BPA-free and can help you cut down on 3.5 billion pounds of lunchbox garbage generated every year.
Amy Green's Simply Sugar and Gluten Free: 180 Easy and Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less offers quick, flavorful and nutritious meals, snacks, and desserts.
Registered dietitian, Linda Simon, shares her experiences growing gluten free grains in her garden.
You can find free food, such as wild carrots, cattail roots and crawfish, right in your neighborhood fields, swamps and creeks, and under rotten logs.
The author figures out how to make matzoh balls, a comfort food from her childhood, without matzoh.
Discover what antioxidants are, how antioxidants work in your body, and which antioxidant-rich foods to choose.
Some wisdom for chicken owners who are just getting started, from a chicken owner who is still getting started.
The Pickin’ Chicken iPhone/iPad app from MOTHER EARTH NEWS helps you select the perfect chicken breed by allowing you to search for desired traits from 82 breeds and more than 100 varieties. You can even select either “heritage” or “endangered” breeds from the list by tapping a button. Descriptions include free-range foraging ability, purpose (eggs, meat or both), egg size, growth rate, mothering ability, place of origin, conservation status and more.
Free-range chickens will naturally return to their chicken coop at night. Learn how to train your free-range chickens to return to their roost at any time of day by using kitchen scraps.
ChickenWaterer.com’s new app, the Cluck-ulator, is available for iPhone and Android smartphones.
I keep chickens, and my rooster is driving me crazy. He always wants to fight me What’s the best way to deal with an aggressive bird? People often tell me, “I went out to the chicken yard to collect eggs,
Which is your favorite hatchery and why? If you need help finding a poultry hatchery or baby chicks, we have some resources for you.
Low temperatures won't prevent you from successfully brooding baby chicks. Following these basic rules, even brooding chicks in negative temperatures is possible.
Choosing from among various heritage breeds can be tough, but finding a breeder can be even tougher. The Society for Preservation of Poultry Antiquities’ Breeders Directory is a resource to make finding reputable chicken breeders easier.
Our 4 eggs a day suddenly became just one egg a day and so we had a mystery to solve!
The American Livestock Breeds Conservancy Heritage has officially defined “heritage chicken.” Find out what a heritage chicken is, learn more about the certification process, and hear — firsthand — what an expert on heritage chickens has to say about pastured poultry and breed selection.
Natural Home editor-in-chief Robyn Griggs Lawrence reviews the latest proposals banning urban chicken farming.
Coops are nececessary to protect chickens from cold weather and predators. Here are some guidelines to help you set up suitable housing for your chickens, including coop type and size, ventilation, heating and nest boxes.
We've added a rooster to our small flock and he's fitting in just fine!
A chicken describes a typical day of treats at Sunflower Farm.
While others are fighting crowds in shopping malls on Friday, you can start choosing the breeds of chickens you’re going to raise in 2011. We’re excited to launch a new digital tool to help you sort through the options. It’s fun, practical and loaded with photos.
An experienced pasture-raised poulty expert, Robert Plamondon, shares his thoughts on the best methods of keeping free-range chickens. He gives tips on four different kinds of electric fencing designed to contain chickens and repel predators, and calls it a less time and money consuming alternative to other fencing options.
It's possible to live without chickens in your back yard. But why would you want to?
This is a great collection of information and tips on raising poultry, chicken coops and hatching poultry eggs. You can learn about brooders, coops and poultry equipment.
Consider these simple steps for making your backyard flock-friendly.
If you want a few hens for fresh eggs, but haven’t had the time (or money) to build a coop or chicken tractor, here’s your chance to win a free coop! The Handcrafted Coops portable chicken coop is an ark-style coop with space for three hens (or five bantams).
How I got the chickens I wanted, but didn't know I was getting.
We’re looking for the most effective and creative solar-heated waterer for chickens. If you’re creative and love to build useful projects, make a solar poultry waterer and try it out this winter. Then submit your design for our contest. We’ll publish the winning entry in the magazine, and the designer will win a free Brinsea incubator.
Chickens naturally go into their coop to roost at dusk, but that’s about the time that many predators start hunting. When you’re not able to be home to close the coop door at the right time, your birds might be in danger. So, Mother Earth News is sponsoring a contest for the best design for a DIY automatic chicken coop door closer.
Poultry expert and contributing writer for MOTHER EARTH NEWS, Harvey Ussery, is teaching a 2-hour online course to help you get started with a backyard poultry flock.
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.
Recipes for satisfying gluten-free breakfasts.
Amy Green shares a recipe for Gluten-Free Seven Grain Slow Cooker Breakfast Cereal.
Registered dietitian, Cheryl Harris, introduces gluten-free whole grains that add fiber and nutrition to the menu for those with celiac disease and gluten intolerance
Children's author, Katie Chalmers, shares her tips and some recipes for a gluten-free family.
We strongly support keeping a few chickens (hens only) within city limits. Feel free to use this statement if you're working to get an ordinance passed to allow chickens in your city.
Four new hens joined the flock at Sunflower Farm and it has taken some time to re-establish the pecking order.
It is deep winter and how are your chickens doing? Here are some quick and easy tips to get them through a cold snap.
An established chicken keeper explains how easy it is to purchase baby chickens from poultry hatcheries.
Advice on how to get the most tender and flavorful meat from your chickens.
The Humane Society of the United States and the United Egg Producers agreed to work together to pass federal legislation for better treatment for the country’s egg-laying hens. While the slightly larger, furnished cages are an improvement for chickens in industrial egg production, you can support animal welfare and get more nutritious eggs by buying pastured eggs from local farmers or raising chickens yourself.
We’ve compiled a list of chicken coops for your convenience.
Keeping a rooster with your flock of hens is beneficial but must be done carefully. Here’s how to introduce a rooster to your poultry flock.
Did attending the Fair make you want to go out back and start building a chicken coop? If you've gotten far enough in your chicken-keeping research to look at specific breeds, look no further than the Mother Earth News Pickin' Chicken app.
Cross-state travel, early chicks, a rescue rabbit and pork — all in one week!
Getting your very first chicks is an exciting experience and a very big step for most first-time homesteaders. Here is some advice for enjoying your new additions and avoiding any potential problems.
Cam thinks his chickens resemble Captain Jack Sparrow. Has he been spending too much time in the sun?
Cam shares six important lessons that he has learned from his chickens.
Cam and Michelle enjoy having their first "HelpX" volunteers to help out in the gardens!
Cam gives an update on his new chickens!
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.
Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch announces the heritage chicken cooking competition. With the right recipe for whole-bird, cut-up, de-boned or barbequed heritage chicken, you could win $1,000. Plus, you'd be contibuting to a worthy cause — promoting heritage breeds.
Here are a series of short videos that show how to start raising free-range chickens with helpful information throughout the process.
Vickie Evans describes her grandparents’ life in Winfred during the Depression and the years following. Both came from farming families and used their land and farming knowledge to help the local community.
Cam found a way to expand his chicken coop without spending a lot!
Coffee bean chaff — the light, airy husks blown off the beans during roasting, can be used as chicken coop litter, mulch and compost. Chaff can usually be found for free at local roasteries.
There are many benefits to purchasing grass-fed eggs, but finding them is not always easy. Robert Plamondon suggests ideas and resources for making grass-fed eggs more available and popular.
How to determine the chickens you process.
The cold weather is hitting Virginia early this year and it's time to winterize!
We've had a few surprises as we travel the road of backyard chicken raising - some of them pleasant, some not so much. Here are a few things we've learned that might help you as you decide whether or not to get chickens for your backyard.
Driving patterns now closely resemble those from 1995, as young drivers are finding alternative forms of transportation.
None of these items' primary use is for gardening or livestock keeping but here we are using them all the time. So here's my list of items that you should keep around if you are an avid gardener or own livestock.
Watch this video to learn how to build tiny home for just $2,000.
Inspired by the recent Mother Earth News article, "65 Money Saving Tips", this piece shares how we at the Be the Change Product spend little and live better.
When it comes to your health and well-being your bed is the most important furniture choice you will make. This article describes why and how to choose the healthiest bed options for you and your family.
Ellen Allard, The Gluten-Free Diva shares a pressure cooker, gluten-free, whole grain breakfast cereal.
Use milk crates to build this beautiful, sturdy free-standing furniture piece.
Celebrate spring by throwing a free tea party--here's how.
Perfect for an evening of socializing out on the deck or an intimate meal at a table for two, GoodLight candles keep the mood bright and the air clean and are now available both online and in stores nationwide.
Congress is about to pass legislation to ease the worry of homeowner debt, but it's also possible to build your dream home without a mortgage.
A new farmer builds a great sheep shelter out of free stuff and learns where not to put it.
Still looking to score free tickets to the 2012 Puyallup Mother Earth News Fair? Here's your chance! Tell us what you want to see at the Fair no later than Friday, May 25, and you'll be entered for a chance to win a pair of tickets.
GoodLight is first to offer sustainable, non-toxic candles for restaurants.
Tricia Thompson, MS, RD shares the results of a study on the contamination of naturally gluten-free grains.
What does it take to build truly sustainable houses – the kind people really want and can afford? If you build small and use natural building materials, then most likely you’ll be able to build your own home in a reasonable amount of time for cash.
Heritage breed chickens are more nutritious and flavorful than store-bought chicken, but require different cooking techniques. Learn different methods of cooking different age and different breeds of chickens.
What’s your idea of a delicious and wholesome breakfast? A fluffy, organic egg omelet made with fresh vegetables? Perhaps scrambled eggs and roasted garden veggies? No matter what your preference, it may surprise you to learn the link between the
Who knew that a flock of chickens would be able to teach us so much about living with our children?
Over the years, we’ve had many experiences with injured and sick chickens. Sometimes the birds have pulled through, sometimes they have not.Such is truly the way of life.
Cruel treatment is the norm in industrial poultry production. Consumers can help stop inhumane treatment by choosing to support local producers who do not put profit ahead of humane treatment.
A growing number of homeowners are realizing how useful chickens can be in the backyard: They offer pest control, fertilizer, comedy relief, and their business end doles out concentrated protein like a Pez dispenser. Unfortunately, novice chicken-owners can encounter problems when they expect more than chickens can deliver, either in food, companionship or general co-operation.
You don't have to stick to corn and soybeans to nourish your flock. Chickens enjoy a variety of foods, including mulberries, worms and Japanese beetles.
Are you new to backyard chickens? Raising chickens is easy once you get the hang of it, but a little knowledge will help you skip these beginner mistakes.
It is officially spring at The Pomponio Homestead despite the icy drizzle and the date. I asked the universe, and it delivered - three hens.
When I asked some chicken-keeping friends what they wished they'd known about chickens when they first got started, the answers were varied.
HOMEGROWN Life blogger and Bay Area homesteader Rachel shares how she built a cheap greenhouse out of mostly scavenged materials - and how you can, too.
It takes a village to build a backyard chicken coop.
When a chicken dies suddenly for no obvious reason, it's unsettling. But it's not uncommon. Here are some possible causes for that sudden death in your otherwise healthy flock.
New baby chicks for our backyard urban chicken flock.
Poultry predators are one of the biggest concerns of owners of chickens and other poultry. Here are a few tips for fighting chicken enemies. Plus some thoughts on common wildlife that are not predators of chickens.
Cam's wife Michelle considers the economics of keeping egg laying chickens.
Each year, the success rate for hens hatching and raising chicks at Rancho Cappuccino contines to increase, and it seems there's more than luck at play. Read about watching natural selection in action on the farm.
Cam discovers that his chickens have unique personalities....
When our chicks arrived, we had no idea how much we had to learn about how to raise baby chicks. Nor did we know how much the books couldn't tell us.
Cam sees the bright side of having to deal with a flat tire.
Yes, spring is finally here. Time to start farming.
Cam notices how many chicken-related expressions we use in our every day language!
Wondering when to buy chickens? February to June is the best time to buy baby chicks if you are interested in raising chickens, or if you are looking into getting different types of poultry. This timing not only helps the chicks, but will offer get deals for you. Also, check out the directory of hatcheries to make finding your poultry easier.
From backyard chickens to hemp grown in the U.S.A., Natural Home readers were concerned with a wide variety of interests in 2009. These 10 issues top the list.
Is there such thing as a poultry pop star? If so, then I think I am one.
Lyanda Haupt talks about the challenges and rewards of protecting her chickens and garden from local wildlife.
In our ever-growing quest to produce our own food we've acquired two egg-laying chickens!
If you’re new to raising chickens, you might be a little intimidated setting up house for your new flock. Homesteader Jenna Woginrich offers a straightforward overview of getting started, from preparing a brooder to providing feed and water.
Looking after your chickens in the winter and cutting with a solar-powered electric chainsaw.
How do you keep backyard chickens safe from poultry predators? With a bit of elbow grease and a few tips, your girls will be safe from sharp teeth.
Starting a chicken flock and researching the Ameraucana chicken breed.
No wonder hatching chicks and producing eggs is such a big business - take a look at the numbers since 1926.
Contrary to popular belief, most breeds are very well equipped to deal with the cold. But good husbandry skills will ensure very little frostbite irritation for your rooster and other large-combed chicken breeds. This blog post is about protecting your chickens' comb, but frostbite can also afflict the feet, mainly on snowy days.
This story recounts one father's hard work to help his family survive by raising chickens and farming during the Great Depression. The author also describes his family-owned homemade brooder house, which helped shelter the chickens that provided meat and eggs during hard times.
During World War I, the federal government ordered people to keep a backyard flock of chickens. What happened? Why is it so hard today?
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.
Natural Home bamboo kitchen tools are made without formaldehyde or other harmful additives, through a process that eliminates waste.
We all have hoarding tendencies. If yours are getting the better of you, rest assured that there are support groups and professional organizations just waiting to help.
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.
Keep your family healthy by paying close attention to your home's 10 germiest places.
Some of the nastiest chemicals we bring into our homes are used to clean ovens and drains--and they're not necessary. Learn how to clean your entire kitchen using vinegar, baking soda and a little salt and lemon juice. You'll love the results!
Who the heck is Paul Goodman? The car-free visionary who inspired a new documentary and bicycle contest.
Using herbs and food to dye Easter eggs gives them beautiful, earthy color--without scary chemicals. And it's surprisingly easy.
Improve your nighttime cycling safety with these do-it-yourself bicycle turn signals.
Kids Konserve provides solutions for packing waste-free lunches.
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.
Submit your best photos of biking and walking for a chance to win a free, 10-day bike trip to Italy!
A humble homegrown pumpkin yields delicious seeds and tasty pies. Meanwhile, a beautiful and fancy dessert squash disappoints and is thrown to the dogs. Recipes ensue.
Soy-free, mushroom-based Quorn frozen products offer convenience without sacrificing a healthy diet.
Ellen Allard, the Gluten-Free Diva explains how using a pressure cook makes eating gluten free fast, easy and healthy.
A very lively potato salad recipe that is always a hit at potlucks.
On May 4th in Washington DC a giant gluten-free cake will be built to raise awareness of the lack of labeling laws that would assure those with celiac disease and gluten intolerance a safe, reliable definition of gluten-free food labeling.
This variation on the (endlessly adaptable) traditional Mongolian yurt design was inspired by the work of master yurt builder, educator, and homesteader Bill Coperthwaite (who was also a neighbor and friend of the Nearings). This low-cost yurt design combines basketry, wattle and daub, and basic lashing (similar to skin-on-frame boats). Not much more than a glorified tent, this DIY yurt made from sticks, string and mud makes a very comfortable, durable and beautiful tiny house, studio, or meditation space.
Suggestions for the interior of your chicken house, including; feed storage, access to nest boxes, dividing the chicken-living area, and making a loft for storing bedding material.
One week after moving our chickens, there now stands a chicken “duck and cover” shelter for them to dive under in the event of a hawk attack. It’s not perfect as a strategy, and the hawk may still get a chicken or two. But these magnificent birds crave a greater measure of freedom than they have in their chicken tractors, and I aim to see that they get it.
As mama hens, is there ever really a time when we don’t worry about our little chicks?
With just about every breed of standard bred, heritage poultry, we have work to do. They are not producing like they once were.
Deep litter coop management keeps chickens happy and healthy, and it’s easier for you.
In preparation for a large chicken harvest later in the season, a few homesteaders perform a trial run to test their chicken harvesting capabilities.
Homestead spring projects include honey bees, Dorking chickens, Ancona ducks, Narragansett turkeys, Dutch Belted calf, Red-Wattle hogs, the incubator, pruning fruit trees,starting seeds, and heirloom plants so we can eat healthful and delicious food all year.
To create a chicken tractor that will keep both you and your hens happy, you'll want to focus on weight, shelter, doors, handles, and more.
The best sources of chicken nutrition, as outlined by specialist Jeff mattocks, include feeding birds whole wheat and field peas, and providing them space to peck on a polyculture pasture.
On-going series on my family's efforts to raise urban chickens in our Minneapolis backyard.
Feeding chickens sustainably means keeping them healthy by using a combination of free-range, good-quality commercial food, supplementing their diet with garden produce and perhaps even mixing your own poultry food.
Our chickens aren't fond of the snow and the wind, but we found a way to let them enjoy the sunshine from the comfort of their coop!
Temporary brooder setup for CSP, chicks in Gossamer Foundation's office (in February).
This blog post covers receiving baby chicks by mail, minimizing chick starve-out, brooder waterers and feeders, and getting chicks contentedly settled in.
This pentagonal structure was costly and tricky to build, but the finished structure is both beautiful and functional.
Announcing our new webcam that will be showing the latest flock of new born chicks in all their cute and feathery glory.
Life with goats, sheep, cows, chickens and other livestock isn't all roses. Publisher Bryan Welch considers the value of finding and keeping the right partner for tackling life on the farm, goose poop and all.
The level of interest in chicken ownership indicated among non-owners could potentially double ownership levels in the next 12 months.
Talking about how to make a DIY electric fence wire holder and how we got a tailgate transplant for around 150 dollars and some signs of spring.
A summary of our quest to find non-medicated chicken feed that has higher quality ingredients than the typical feed store bag of chicken food.
We're gearing up for spring on our southwest Virginia farm, planning the garden, pruning the perennials, and getting ready to raise bees, broilers, and mushrooms.
How do you find the best chicken coop design for your new flock? We'll help you walk through the evaluation process AND get a free analysis spreadsheet to help you decide.
When I first got chickens many years ago I had two initial goals: to let my flock roam free range and live as close as possible to how they would naturally, and to build my soil with their manure.
Columnist Ann Fisher writes about the unfair animal ordinances in Worthington, Ohio, which may surprise chicken owners.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS interviewed poultry advocate Oprah HenFree at the MOTHER EARTH NEWS FAIR.
I started my poultry quest way too early for New Englanders: January! I marked my calendar in red and drew childish pictures of a chicken on the calendar blocks. I was as impatient as a 6-year-old waiting for Christmas morning.
Quails make an excellent urban choice for poultry raising, chiefly for their tranquil nature, minimal noise and egg-producing efficiency. In this, the second installment of my series on quail-raising, you'll learn how to identify gender from color and marks and see how quail eggs compare with those of chickens.
If you’re the first of your friends to move to the country, get some chickens and plant an organic garden there will be some inevitable social fallout.
Meet Amelia, Honey, and Tilda — an Ameraucana, Buff Orpington, and Rhode Island Red, respectively. We keep our little flock of three in an Eglu, which has an egg-shaped hen house attached to a wire-enclosed run.
A Grade 1 group come through the farm for a tour
A few years ago the ALBC launched its Heritage Chicken promotion; if you’d like to get involved, here’s what you need to know.
‘Pluck A Lotta Chickens: A Live Demonstration’ was in the Timberstone Room, which holds several hundred people. I sat second row, center. Once they started the process, it wasn’t nearly as bizarre as I thought it was going to be.
Mark fenced in a new chicken pasture in the hot sun, an experience that was made possible by his homemade solar fan hat. Meanwhile, I played with scythes and bees and maps.
This durable, puncture and tear-resistant chicken saddle will protect free-range chickens from pecking, cannibalistic behavior and predators.
Leaving the rental home we had lived in for three years in Carmel Indiana, to move back to Kangaroo Valley, Australia has meant more than losing the plot and getting the flock out of there!
Talking about the excitement of Anna's new book cover that we got to preview from the publisher this past week and the anxiety of our new born chicks as they go out into the big world. Also have some details on how to make your own cleft graft.
A lesson learned in not counting your chickens before they're hatched
I am new to America, and new to the suburbs, having previously lived in rural Australia. I now live in suburban Indiana. During the past two years I have been trying to set up an "urban homestead" for our family. The neighbors are curious and amused.
Our experiments with an Alaskan small log mill attached to our chainsaw had variable results making planks from downed trees.
The last week of the month has been a busy one with are preparations for the ending of winter and the start of a new growing season. We've got some details on a new cover crop and why we choose and simple composting toilet system compared to others.
At Green Roof Growers in Chicago, Little Green Girl takes a field trip to the new chicken coop. Holding chickens, meeting the puppy Carl, and visiting the chickens' new home are all part of the fun.
Raising baby coturnix quail is an exciting adventure. Taylor is completely new to raising poultry and shares his experiences.
Homesteader Cam Mather describes integrating new backyard chickens into his existing flock and the wonderful life his "ladies" lead.
One of the newest apps for green car owners is Cleaner and Greener Fuels, which locates refueling stations for alternative fuel vehicles.
Forced to extremes by illness, these homeowners built sacred, beautiful homes completely free of toxic chemicals, petrochemical fumes and other poisons. For all three, better housing has meant better health.
Summing up the past week with a few highlights that help to illustrate how we've been getting along in the ending days of the 2012 winter season.
Healthy baby shopping begins with an investigation into nontoxic cribs. Check out these three solid wood options.
In a wabi-sabi house, space and light are the most desirable ornaments. Follow these steps to clear the clutter so they can shine through.
Highlights from the "Make Your Own Green Cleaners--for Pennies" workshop at the Mother Earth News Fair: How to use vinegar and baking soda to clean just about everything.
Essentia introduces the world's first memory foam mattress made without chemicals.
As organic industry leaders urge consumers to take action against GMOs--the biggest threat the industry faces this year--soapmaker David Bronner gives $25,000 to seed an anti-GMO march on Capitol Hill.
You can get your whole house fresh and shiny clean with just five ingredients: lemons, vinegar, baking soda, tea tree oil and salt.
Choose chemical-free organic bedding to start off the new year with healthy rest in a healthy bedroom.
How to go from buying everything at Wally World to growing organic vegetables, raising livestock, building an efficient home, and a Do-It-Yourself, self-sufficient lifestyle.
Jenna Woginrich writes about the beauty of Cold Antler Farm, a small homestead that she shares with Pig, her rabbits Benjamin and Doe and several chickens. Taking care of her animals on cold winter nights is a challenge for Woginrich, but one she gladly accepts armed with a water bottle and affection. Woginrich's modest barn provides shelter for her animals and a useful space to feel at home.
Solar Energy International is offering a free online course as an introduction to renewable energy. You will not walk away an expert, but will have learned the basics of renewable energy and be able to decide which technologies are right for you.
Turn low value plastic trash into valuable building blocks with a $300 homemade press. Free plans for a hand operated press are available. A mechanized version could be made by converting a log splitter.
Not quite ready to get rid of family heirlooms and art that you don’t have space to display? The Japanese practice of rotating precious items through a special alcove, or tokonoma, on a seasonal basis is less painful than giving away or selling them.
So, what makes a flock of poultry sustainable? What is standard-bred poultry? If you purchase chicks from a hatchery, are they true to the breed? Why does every hatchery sell Rhode Island Reds and they all look different? Why do the Cornish Cross meat chickens have so many problems? Raising standard poultry is the only true way to improve the sustainability of quality local food while preserving the strength of Heritage poultry.
Raising chicks is easy as long as you pay attention to their needs for food, water, and housing. It also helps to learn their language.
The arrival of our first chickens and pigs to the farm, and prepping to head off to my summer internship at Polyface Farm
We're lucky to be able to live the way we do, even when we feel like we're melting
Edamame soybeans are tough,fast-maturing plants that can withstand extreme garden conditions. They have few problems with disease or insect pests. The green pods are delicious and high in protein, and make a good addition to an edible landscape.
Why raise chickens? Because they’re the pet that makes you breakfast.
Boy! Did I learn my lesson when I left our young pullets out back with our trusted dogs. I'll never do that again.
Finally getting the barn roof repair project started was a big deal for us as well as a few other things that are worth checking out if you are interested in modern homesteading.
How to define an egg shed? Let’s look at the definition of watershed to give the egg shed concept more shape. A watershed is defined by the Environmental Protection Agency as: “The area of land where all of the water that is under it, or drains off of it, goes into the same place”. Based on the definition of a watershed, an egg shed could be defined as: the eggs produced within a certain distance that go to a specific place. That place could be your kitchen.
To benefit from the meat of backyard chickens, one must learn to process them. This includes how to kill, scald, pluck, and eviscerate, and then get them into the freezer. This article describes how we are learning to improving this process.
Use of a mobile chicken tractors allows us to keep the birds on fresh ground and stay on top of the weeds.
Talking about the recent past week where we got several items crossed off the Spring to-do list and managed to have some fun while doing it complete with pictures to illustrate the good times.
Nobody can resist fluffy baby chicks, so what would be better than hatching your own? Let us put your mind at rest and make your first time incubating an enjoyable experience you will want to repeat.
A brief announcement of the new Permaculture chicken ebook series that starts with chicken egg incubation.
Trying to sum up a few of the lesson learned while figuring out the best way to incubate and hatch cute chicks.
Robert White is remaking himself as a farmer, and will return to his family's land to start a market garden. Here's why.
It's not always easy to use natural remedies on your chickens. Here's a trick to keep up your sleeve that will have them begging for their medicine.
Alexander Goldberg’s first blog post, introducing himself, his chickens and his concerns for rare and endangered breeds of poultry. Alexander talks about poultry shows, his work with 4H and support for the Livestock Conservancy.
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.
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!
An update to the refrigerator root cellar and how the Thermo Cube is keeping it from dipping below the freezing point and how we decided to start a terrace system to make more flat spots in a chicken pasture that's on a hillside that is steep.
Announcing our new automatic chicken feeder contest and how some lucky person could win a 10 pack diy kit or 3 premade watering units.
Talking about the back up generator failure along with recent golf cart modifications.
Porch building tips along with deer pressure notes and golf cart pickup bed instructions.Throw in a 5 foot high chicken wire fence and a rare appearance from a normally camera shy cat named Strider and you've got an idea of what we've been up to.
Clipping the wing of a troublesome hen and tasting the first Chicago hardy figs was really great, but what was even more fantastic was seeing Anna's new book arrive and how beautiful it looks.
Simran Sethi enjoys the fruits of late summer at a local farm dinner.
In the first study of its kind, Duke University researchers found multiple toxic chemical flame retardants in car seats, breast-feeding pillows, changing pads, crib wedges and bassinet mattresses. Ask about flammability standards before you buy.
YIKES! What to do when you've planted too many veggies? Is your garden producing more than one family can eat? Sure, you can give it away. But wait! Try pickling those garden gems. This way, you'll be able to enjoy them through the winter and beyond!
Describing how to look up tax maps, cutting carrots, and deleting problem tomato plants that only produce insipid fruit. The main attraction this week is our Power Plucker review and how awesome this new product is at saving time when plucking.
Crushing a truck, harvesting garlic, and fixing a broken flywheel shaft key are just a few of the things that got done over the last week at WaldenEffect.org complete with photos of all the juicy stuff.
Announcing an opportunity to get Anna's new Ebook for free today at Amazon on the subject of homesteading in a mobile home otherwise known as a trailer.
Summing up the last week of activity by hitting on a few key stories that might prove note worthy to a few of the homesteading folks out there complete with photo montage of golf cart jousting and aquaponic trout.
Using oil seed radishes to add organic matter to the ground and attracting native pollinators with a nest site. Harvesting sweet potato seeds if we're lucky and admiring the parasitic wasp's ability to lay white egg sacs into the body of a horn worm
Describing how we are trying to provide a low budget solar panel back up system for under 1000 dollars that will run our laptops and router along with a few other things if the local power grid has any issues.
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
How a born and bred city boy came to leave Detroit, start a Tennessee homestead with his wife, and blog about it here.
Breaking down the last week of homesteading we've done over at WaldenEffect.org, and the Top Bar project we started as well as talk on Brix, biodynamics, and Plant Secondary Metabolites. Also have details on an external frame backpack modification.
A little background on how Ric and Vicki moved from Detroit to a Tennessee homestead, and starting to get up to date on what they've done since.
Top bar hive modifications, turkey traps, and gourmet potatoes are just a few of the topics covered in the past week of blogging we've been up to. Homesteading healthcare and a new virtual book club round off the week with several reader comments.
Growing Local Food is a new book that encompasses all the needed basics to grow plants, keep heritage breed animals and bees. The author is a homesteader and physician who gives the readers the basic information to grow or find nutritious, local food