Dear MOTHER: December 2009/January 2010

Readers’ letters about Joel Salatin, Treska Stein, colony collapse disorder, overpopulation and more.

| December 2009/January 2010

  • Treska Stein
    Treska Stein’s firsthand report, “My Introduction to Self-reliance,” inspired many MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers.
  • Honeybee
    Reader Stephen Risker suggested industrial breeding practices as a cause for the honeybee decline after reading “Are Potent Pesticides Killing Our Honeybees?”
  • Garlic
    “Growing Garlic” drew praise from reader Haley Tuner for both Barbara Pleasant’s informative writing and Keith Ward’s elegant illustrations.
  • Microwave
    Reader Eve Otto wrote to say that she will “never again put plastic in my microwave oven” after reading “Plastics: What’s Dangerous, What’s Not.”
  • Solar prairie home
    A few readers were irked by the size of the home plan featured in “You Can Build This Energy-efficient Solar Home,” but just as many complimented the overall design.
  • Guineas
    Reader Rose Elliot wrote in to warn of some of the downsides of keeping guineas.

  • Treska Stein
  • Honeybee
  • Garlic
  • Microwave
  • Solar prairie home
  • Guineas

A few readers had a beef with the size (2,600 square feet) of the home plan in You Can Build This Energy-efficient Solar Home. We don’t think the only option for the future is to demand that everyone live in small homes. Our goal is to bring you a range of options, from tiny homes such as the 480-square-footer featured in Making the Most of a Small Home, to the solar prairie home. Some readers can afford and build larger homes; we want to offer them designs that are as energy-efficient and green as possible.

Consuming less will help, but conservation alone isn’t going to get us where we need to go. We must adopt a broader, more positive vision of how to create a more sustainable future. Stay tuned for more about what we think that vision can be in our next issue, which will mark MOTHER’s 40th anniversary!

Salutes to Salatin and Stein

I just finished reading the August/September 2009 issue, and I loved it (as usual)! I especially loved Joel Salatin’s (Everything He Wants to Do is Illegal) and Treska Lydia Stein’s (My Introduction to Self-reliance) articles.

I am a young aspiring farmer, and I agree with Mr. Salatin that “overcoming the cultural prejudice against splinters and blisters” is a huge obstacle for the next generation of farmers. I loved what Ms. Stein shared about getting back the love she gives to her garden! These articles reminded me of The Greenhorns, a documentary about “America’s young farming community.”

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