Pigs are much closer to their cousin, the wild boar, than other domesticated animals are to their wild ancestors. Ethical pig management requires an understanding of their natural behavior, including factors such as social grouping, mating territory, and shelter.
In Happy Pigs Taste Better, author Alice Percy advises readers on pasturing and feeding hogs organically to ensure the highest-quality gourmet meat, as well as managing the breeding herd and administering effective natural health care. In addition, she provides an overview of marketing and distribution for those looking to turn their hog farming operation into a lucrative business.
Whether you’re looking to convert a conventional operation to organic, grow your backyard hog operation into a viable business, or start from scratch, this comprehensive book has got you covered.
If you want to incubate, hatch and brood chicks yourself, rather than buying them from a hatchery, this is the guide you need. Poultry authority Gail Damerow explains exactly how to hatch healthy baby chickens, ducklings, goslings, turkey poults and guinea keets, addressing everything from selecting a breed and choosing the best incubator to ensuring proper setup and sanitary conditions, understanding embryo development, and feeding and caring for newborn chicks in a brooder.
Ready to take your beekeeping skills to the next level? In Business with Bees provides the answers you need.
“The only way to save the honey bee is to save the beekeeper. All the rest comes second,” says best-selling author and beekeeping expert Kim Flottum. In this book, Flottum shows you how to save bees, beekeepers, and your business. He’ll takes serious beekeepers past the early stages and learning curves and offer practical, useful advice for converting your their passion into a part-time or full-time career with measurable results.
This beekeeping business how-to guide offers all of the in-depth answers to the questions you didn’t know you had.
• Writing a business plan
• Finding the best sources for funding
• Determining what your facilities will be and how to acquire them
• Getting and installing the right equipment
• Cooperating with other local businesses
• Promoting your business and measuring success
• And much more!
With this expert advice you can become as knowledgeable, confident, and successful in running a business as you are in beekeeping.
This book is the first, and most comprehensive, guide about plant guilds ever written, and covers in detail both what guilds are and how to design and construct them, complete with extensive color photography and design illustrations.
Armed with wild-yeast-bearing totem sticks, readers will learn techniques for brewing sweet, semi-sweet and dry meads, melomels (fruit meads), metheglins (spiced meads), Ethiopian t’ej, flower and herbal meads, braggots, honey beers, country wines, and even Viking grog, opening the Mead Hall doors to further experimentation in fermentation and flavor.
In Managing Pasture, author Dale Strickler guides farmers and ranchers through the practical and ideological considerations behind caring for the land as a key part of running a successful grass-based operation, from the profitability of replacing expensive grain feed with nutrient-rich native grasses to the benefits of ecologically-minded land management.
Mycorrhizal fungi have been waiting a long time for people to recognize just how important they are to the making of dynamic soils. These microscopic organisms partner with the root systems of approximately 95 percent of the plants on Earth, and they sequester carbon in much more meaningful ways than human “carbon offsets” will ever achieve. Most of these soil fungi are mycorrhizal, supporting plant health in elegant and sophisticated ways. The boost to green immune function in plants and community-wide networking turns out to be the true basis of ecosystem resiliency. A profound intelligence exists in the underground nutrient exchange between fungi and plant roots, which in turn determines the nutrient density of the foods we grow and eat.
In No-Till Intensive Vegetable Culture, O’Hara describes the methods he has developed, which are completely free of herbicides or other pesticides and require only a few acres of land and minimal capital investment. He asserts that this flexible, ecological methodology is as important for soil fertility as it is for his economic success.
This book documents the many reasons why raising livestock on a natural diet of grass is better for consumers, family farmers, the environment and the animals. Includes proof that meat, eggs and dairy products from grass-fed animals are richer in numerous vitamins and nutrients and lower in fat.
Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, Mother Earth News is recommending books to its readers. For more than 40 years, Mother Earth News has been North America’s “Original Guide to Living Wisely,” creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.
What goes into feed and why? How important is grit? What do I do when my birds get sick? All of these questions are answered in Pastured Poultry: Feeding and Management, 3rd edition! This is the perfect hands-on guide for understanding and developing your own pastured poultry feed. Whether you only have a few backyard chickens or a farm with hundreds, this book will be a helpful resource to dive into.
Popular Poultry Breeds examines 40 popular breeds of chickens and bantams. Most breeds exist in several plumage color varieties, and in large and bantam (miniature) size versions, all of which are also included in this comprehensive book.
Jessi Bloom, the bestselling author of Free-Range Chicken Gardens and an ecological landscape designer, and permaculture expert Dave Boehnlein explain the basic principles and ethics of permaculture, show the entire design process from land assessment to the completed master plan, and offer detailed information on the plants, water, waste, energy, shelter, food, animals, and structures that make up the garden.
Houdan. Nankin. Indian Runner. Narragansett. These may sound like exotic place names or unusual varieties of produce, but each actually refers to one of the many hundreds of lesser-known poultry breeds that tempt the livestock owner who's prepared to venture into less-familiar territory. Providing an alternative to commercial breeds and hybrids, heritage breeds each boast their own unique characteristics and personality traits, and are a valuable (and entertaining) addition to a sustainable food system.
Pure Poultry is the first book in nearly 100 years to focus specifically on heritage breeds of chickens, turkeys and ducks and their role in a self-reliant lifestyle. This timely, beautifully illustrated resource includes:
Brimming with quiet humor, Pure Poultry is an immensely readable how-to and why-to resource. Based entirely on her personal experience, author Victoria Redhed Miller includes plenty of lessons learned the hard way. Pure Poultry shows how heritage-breed poultry can enhance and deepen anyone's quality of life, whether you have a farm, a small backyard, or a neighbor with space to share.
Produce your own milk, cheese, meat, fiber, fertilizer, and more.
Incorporating dairy goats into a diversified homestead can be the key to greater self-sufficiency. Responding to questions and concerns from readers from all over North America and beyond, this fully revised and expanded edition of Raising Goats Naturally will help readers work with nature to raise dairy goats to produce milk, cheese, meat, fertilizer, leather, fiber, and soap – all without relying on drugs or following the factory farm model. By observing your own animals closely and educating yourself about their specific needs, you can create an individualized plan for keeping them healthy and maximizing their productivity. This unique, fully illustrated guide will teach you to help your herd thrive with:
• Breed-specific descriptions to help you choose the right goats for your goals and lifestyle
• Detailed information on housing, fencing, breeding, health, milking, and nutrition
• Complete recipes and instructions for making your own cheese, dairy products, and soap, as well as cooking with goat meat
Packed with personal experiences and backed up by expert veterinary advice and scientific studies, Raising Goats Naturally brings together a wealth of practical information on raising goats for the love of it and using their milk and meat to become more self-reliant.
A comprehensive guide-book for those interested in raising poultry on pasture. Numerous articles from a diversity of authors, each highlighting their "lessons learned" and "best practices." Organized in an easy-to-use format, topics range from brooding to processing, laying hens to broilers and turkeys. This book offers everything from the basics to the finest details shared by successful pastured poultry producers. Included are discussions of various shelter designs and comparisons of "day-range" vs "closed shelter" systems.
Chapters on Marketing and Equipment help producers make decisions in these areas. Profiles of numerous successful producers and suppliers of specialized equipment from around the U.S. are included. Fully indexed.
The concept of silvopasture challenges our notions of both modern agriculture and land use. For centuries, European settlers of North America have engaged in practices that separate the field from the forest, and even the food from the animal. Silvopasture systems integrate trees, animals, and forages in a whole-system approach that offers a number of benefits to the farmer and the environment. Such a system not only offers the promise of ecological regeneration of the land, but also an economical livelihood and even the ability to farm extensively while buffering the effects of a changing climate: increased rainfall, longer droughts, and more intense storm events.
Silvopasture, however, involves more than just allowing animals into the woodlot. It is intentional, steeped in careful observation skills and flexible to the dynamics of such a complex ecology. It requires a farmer who understands grassland ecology, forestry, and animal husbandry. The farmer needn’t be an expert in all of these disciplines, but familiar enough with them to make decisions on a wide variety of time scales. A silvopasture system will inevitably look different from year to year, and careful design coupled with creativity and visioning for the future are all part of the equation.
Healthy soil means thriving plants. Yet untangling the soil food web and optimizing your soil health is beyond most gardeners, many of whom lack an in-depth knowledge of the soil ecosystem.
Soil Science for Gardeners is an accessible, science-based guide to understanding soil fertility and, in particular, the rhizosphere – the thin layer of liquid and soil surrounding plant roots, so vital to plant health.
Spices are universally recognized as a source of flavor and aromatics, but in cultures around the world, these plant parts have a long history as source of medicine. In Spice Apothecary, author Bevin Clare combines her training in herbalism and nutrition to guide readers in a return to the kitchen spice cabinet for better health and healing.
Focusing on 19 common culinary spices that are easy to source and prized for their flavor, this practical guide highlights the health benefits of each spice for supporting wellness goals, with information on the best preparation for medicinal benefit, storage recommendations, and daily dosage guidelines. To bolster the immune system, chili, garlic, ginger, and mustard are best. Kidney health is supported by celery seed, parsley, and sage, while the respiratory system benefits most from ginger, mint, and thyme.
Formulas for dried spice blends that amplify the effectiveness of individual flowers, roots, leaves, and seeds accompany recipes for delicious dips, soups, sauces, and even sweets that deliver flavor and healing. This approachable exploration of the world of spices puts at everyone’s fingertips new creative and impactful ways to incorporate key health-boosting spices into everyday life.
Whether a farmer is raising one cow or a herd, Storey’s Guide to Raising Beef Cattle is the most reliable reference for ensuring a successful, healthy cattle operation. In this fully updated, full-color fourth edition, longtime cattle rancher and author Heather Smith Thomas explains every aspect of bovine behavior and provides expert guidance on breed selection, calving, feeding, housing, pasture, and health care.
Whether you're an architect, engineer, contractor, or owner-builder interested in making informed choices, Straw Bale Building Details is the indispensable guide to current practice in straw bale design and construction.