The Market Gardener: A Successful Growers Handbook for Small-Scale Organic Farming

| 7/22/2016 5:39:00 PM

Tags: sustainable farming, market gardening, book review, farming inspiration, beginning farmers, young farmers, California, Joshua Burman Thayer, Jean Martin Fortier,

The Market Gardener Book Cover

For those wishing to create a livelihood from the land, yet perhaps scared of how to make the numbers work, this new book by Jean-Martin Fortier is a revelation: The Market Gardener: A Successful Growers Handbook for Small-Scale Organic Farming (New Society Publishers, 2014).

A step-by-step guide that lays out practical know-how, Fortier has done his due diligence to learn from those who have innovated in the past and compiled successful strategies into one small successful farm. In a time of “feel good stories” that may or may not be financially solvent, Fortier simply hands over to the reader the blueprints to confidently launch and run a small-scale market garden.

A Brief History of Bio-Intensive Farming

Fortier’s book builds upon the teachings of Rudolf Steiner in Europe. The “French Bio-Intensive Method” was brought to America by Alan Chadwick and showcased at U.C. Santa Cruz’s Chadwick Gardens. This venue provided the learning lab for numerous baby-boomer students of Chadwick.

Of this rich legacy of students, the bio-intensive method was most popularized by student and author John Jeavons in his book, How to Grow More Vegetables. As Jeavon’s luminary text laid out concise plant spacing charts to achieve maximum production per square foot, so too does this book lay out explicit plans for success.

Tools for Financial Success

Fortier’s farm in Quebec, Canada, produces $150,000 per year in merely 1.5 acres of intensive production.

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