Renewable Energy Living: Family Farming, Kaolin Clay and Frontier House

The Green Gazette column shares renewable energy living topics, including family friendly farming, kaolin clay an orchard miracle for fruit growers and a close-up look at the PBS reality history show Frontier House.

| April/May 2002

The Green Gazette column focuses on renewable energy living topics, including family friendly farming, kaolin clay helps fruit growers and the new PBS history show Frontier House.

Family Friendly Farming

What happens to a family farm when the parents die? If there are several siblings, the farm usually has to be sold to settle the estate.

"The sin of equal inheritance has destroyed far more family farms than multinational corporations, bankers and government regulations," Joel Salatin declares in his new book Family Friendly Farming (see MOTHER's Bookshelf, page 120 in this issue).

Salatin speaks from experience. His brother and sister left the family farm in Virginia's Shenandoah Valley; Salatin stayed, pioneering the grass-based farming he detailed in his books like Pastured Profit. With a bit of wise planning, Salatin's family avoided a painful farm feud and agreed to keep the farm in the family's future, for generations.

In addition to information about inheritance planning, the book offers practical advice on effective parenting, home schooling, living without TV, restoring community, setting worthy goals and involving everyone through regular family councils.

There is no time to waste. The average age of the American farmer is now nearly 60. If we are ever to have a truly sustainable agriculture, we must deal with the many issues Salatin raises. That makes Family Friendly Farming one of the most important farming books ever written.

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