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Like so many other city-dwellers, Cam and Michelle Mather longed for a simpler, quieter life in the country. When they found a century-old farmhouse on 150 acres of land that was in their price range,…
Like so many other city-dwellers, Cam and Michelle Mather longed for a simpler, quieter life in the country. When they found a century-old farmhouse on 150 acres of land that was in their price range, they jumped at the chance to make their move. The fact that the home was "off-grid" with no power or telephone lines connecting it to the outside world seemed like a bonus!
Twelve years later their life in the country is not quite as simple as they had envisioned, but it is peaceful. There were more challenges than they could have anticipated, as well as more rewards.
Along the way they installed more solar panels, erected a wind turbine, and upgraded and replaced all of the major components of their off-grid electrical system. They installed a solar-thermal hot water system; figured out how to have a phone, Internet and satellite TV; and kept their home heated with wood cut from their own property. They also carved out a garden and began growing much of their own food.
They acquired new skills and knowledge, but most importantly they learned to appreciate the value of good neighbors, good books and good manure.
Our forefathers and mothers knew how to keep their homes clean and homey — and live richer while spending less. Many of today's products are expensive, bad for the environment, and don't work any bet…
Our forefathers and mothers knew how to keep their homes clean and homey — and live richer while spending less. Many of today's products are expensive, bad for the environment, and don't work any better than Grandma's methods, which only cost pennies.
The editors at Back Home Magazine have collected hundreds of formulas for effective cleaning, gardening and home maintenance — as well as ways our ancestors saved on heating bills, prevented costly repairs, and maintained a cozy, charming home with little besides ingenuity.
Drawing on the advice and techniques of contributors across the country, this indispensable guide shows you the best ways to take care of everything in your home from wood floors, to tile, to stainless steel appliances ... and how to get the longest life out of every household item from pots and pans to pillowcases.
The Country Almanac of Housekeeping Techniques That Save You Money is chock-full of solutions, recipes and how-to projects for living a simpler, cleaner life and keeping your home beautiful.
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In Heartsblood, nationally acclaimed nature writer and veteran outdoorsman David Petersen takes a clear-eyed look a…
In Heartsblood, nationally acclaimed nature writer and veteran outdoorsman David Petersen takes a clear-eyed look at humans and hunting, and reaches conclusions sure to challenge everyone’s preconceptions. He draws clear distinctions between true hunting and contemporary hunter behavior, praising what’s right about the former and damning what’s wrong with the latter. Along with his extensive personal experience, Petersen draws on philosophy, evolutionary science, biology and empirical studies to create an engaging and literate work that offers a unique look at hunting, hunters, anti-hunting and, in the words of the author, "life’s basic truths."
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David Petersen lives and breathes elk and their rugged backcountry. He walks their walk, talks their talk, and relates to them so completely he'd say elk helped make him the man he is today. Stalk the trails, experience the passion, the drive and the life-changing lessons as they unfold. Learn what it means to be A Man Made of Elk.
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Country Skills is the complete, practical guide to living off the land. Author Alison Candlin offers easy-to-follow…
Country Skills is the complete, practical guide to living off the land. Author Alison Candlin offers easy-to-follow advice about planning, establishing, and maintaining a small-acre farm, an allotment, or a backyard garden. She also includes essential tips on selecting, housing, and looking after chickens, goats, pigs, bees, and other animals, as well as expert advice on collecting and recycling water, composting your left-over scraps, and generating energy for your own home—saving you lots of money and reducing your carbon footprint.
Throughout are step-by-step instructions and more than 350 photographs and illustrations to guide readers on planting, growing, harvesting, preserving, and storing vegetables and fruit of all kinds, in all seasons, in all parts of the country. Candlin also discusses building and using greenhouses, rotating crops to replenish soil nutrients, and installing proper drainage around your garden. Complete with a directory of common pests and diseases that could plague your homegrown produce, as well as useful information on how to harvest wild food, this book is the essential manual on living a self-sufficient, greener, and healthier lifestyle.
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Organic No-Till Farming offers a map to an organic farming system that limits tillage, reduces labor, and improves …
Organic No-Till Farming offers a map to an organic farming system that limits tillage, reduces labor, and improves soil structure. Based on the latest research by pioneering agriculturists, this book offers new technologies and tools based on sound biological principles, making it possible to reduce and even eliminate tillage. Field-tested over many seasons, these methods make cover crops into a source of fertility as well as a tool for weed management. As traditional tillage turns into rotational tillage, natural soil biology is maximized and synthetic inputs are minimized. For organic farmers who want to refine their practices and conventional farmers interested in new ideas, Organic No-Till Farming is indispensable.
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Rabbits are wonderful animals to raise, whether as pets or as livestock on a farm. They are especially great as sta…
Rabbits are wonderful animals to raise, whether as pets or as livestock on a farm. They are especially great as starter animals for children who participate in 4-H or other rabbit shows. But before you embark on owning one of these lovable critters, there’s a lot you need to know; for instance, which of the forty-seven rabbit breeds is best for you? Backed by the National FFA Organization, our acclaimed series of How to Raise guides has helped countless first-time animal owners across the United States confidently care for their new companions. In this freshly updated second edition of How to Raise Rabbits, you’ll find practical advice for raising any number of rabbits in any environment—rural or urban, one rabbit or twenty. Brother-sister writing duo and 4-H alumni Daniel and Samantha Johnson expertly walk you through all the basics on breed types, housing and food requirements, shows, kit care, and general healthcare for the rabbit. With clear and informative instructions, fully illustrated with beautiful how-to photography, How to Raise Rabbits continues to be an essential primer for the newcomer to rabbit care and a classic on any rabbit lover’s bookshelf.
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From the author of Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms comes the only identification guide exclusively devoted …
From the author of Growing Gourmet and Medicinal Mushrooms comes the only identification guide exclusively devoted to the world's psilocybin-containing mushrooms. Detailed descriptions and color photographs for over 100 species are provided, as well as an exploration of their long-standing (and often religious) use by ancient peoples and their continued significance to modern-day culture. Some of the species included have just been discovered in the past year or two, and still others have never before been photographed in their natural habitats.
The urban landscape has swallowed vast swaths of prime farmland across North America. Imagine how much more self-reliant our communities would be if 30 million acres of lawns were made productive agai…
The urban landscape has swallowed vast swaths of prime farmland across North America. Imagine how much more self-reliant our communities would be if 30 million acres of lawns were made productive again. Permaculture is a practical way to apply ecological design principles to food, housing, and energy systems; making growing fruits, vegetables and livestock easier and more sustainable.
The Permaculture Handbook is a step-by-step, beautifully illustrated guide to creating resilient and prosperous households and neighborhoods, complemented by extensive case studies of three successful farmsteads and market gardens. This comprehensive manual casts garden farming as both an economic opportunity and a strategy for living well with less money. It shows how, by mimicking the intelligence of nature and applying appropriate technologies such as solar and environmental design, permaculture can:
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Activists striving for any type of social change often find themselves operating on the fringes of legal and social…
Activists striving for any type of social change often find themselves operating on the fringes of legal and social norms. Many experience difficulties when their innovative ideas run afoul of antiquated laws and regulations that favor a big business, energy- and material-intensive approach. Tales from the Sustainable Underground is packed with the stories of just some of these pioneers – who care more for the planet than the rules – whether they're engaged in natural building, permaculture, community development, or ecologically based art. Ride along and meet courageous and inspiring individuals such as:
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