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What books should I add to my wish list?

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  • Sat, Nov 09, 2013 - 05:19pm

    Karta Shaffer

    Karta Shaffer

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    What books should I add to my wish list?

I am putting together an amazon wish list for the holidays and this is what I have on it so far:


Gaia's Garden by Hemenway

Mycelium Running by Stamets

Edible Forest Gardens (2 volumes) by Jacke, Toensmeier

Fresh Eggs Daily by Steele

One-Woman Farm by Woginrich

Permaculture One by Mollison


Do you have any suggestions for books or magazine subscriptions I should add to my list?  I especially need a recommendation on canning and food preservation.  Also, animal husbandry.  And bees.  Assume that I know nothing.  

We will be moving next year to a place with acreage (50+?) somewhere in New England and I will be building our homestead from scratch.  My husband travels for work 2-3 weeks a month and I am a stay at home mom with a 3-year-old and trying to have another baby.  Anyway, there will be plenty of time to study before implementations on a large scale.  We will probably hire a permaculture consultant to design a master plan that we will implement over the next 5, 10, 20 years (it never really stops right?).

This is our alternative to a 401K plan, a much more stable long-term investment!  🙂


  • Sat, Nov 09, 2013 - 08:55pm


    Wendy S. Delmater

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    I’d recommend

  •  Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving – basic canning
  • Ball Complete Book of Home Preserving – advanced canning
  • Root Cellaring: Natural Cold Storage of Fruits & Vegetables – by Mike Bubel and Nancy Bubel
  • Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times – by Steve Solomon, excellent info on seed saving


  • Sat, Nov 09, 2013 - 11:45pm



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    Perennial Vegetables

Let Me Try Again.

Perennial Vegetables By Eric Toensmeier. One of my favorites. Also –

  • Sun, Nov 10, 2013 - 02:17am



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    Some more suggestions

Here are some of my favorites:

Four Season Harvest by Eliot Coleman.  Especially germane to gardening in New England.

The Resilient Gardener by Carol Deppe.  Covers 5 survival crops in a lot of depth.  One of a few gardening books that's not the same old introductory material as every other general gardening book.

The Permaculture Handbook by Peter Bane.  Much more accessible intro to permaculture than Mollison's work, and more geared toward a North American audience.


As far as magazines go, my favorite is Backwoods Home.  Has a definite libertarian slant, goes beyond the basics.  Unlike Mother Earth News, Hobby Farm, etc, I don't get the impression that most of the articles are simply a way to highlight another set of consumer goods that are advertised on the very next page.

  • Sun, Nov 10, 2013 - 11:28am



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    And a few more

I think I have too many books.  I have all but a couple listed above and would agree with the list so far.  I would add:

The Small-Scale Poultry Flock by Harvey Ussery

How to Dry Foods by Deanna DeLong

Breed Your Own Vegetable Varieties by Carol Deppe

  • Sun, Nov 10, 2013 - 12:31pm

    liz cowen

    liz cowen

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    hi raynei built my homestead

hi rayne

i built my homestead from scratch. took me 7 years to get to a stopping point,,,tho there never really is a stopping point with this lifestyle.

if i can be of any help, i offer to you. it's alot of work and very rewarding…and as chris says, just do the next thing.

i have or have read the above books…i think elliot coleman th most helpful to set up infrastructure. in the north especially.

i would add build your own earth oven by kiko denzer. i built an outdoor kitchen area and used this book to understand concepts of ovens…i built a brick oven with fire brick and field stone…makes fantastic pizza! i;ve also cooked chickens, turkeys, roasts, and bread in it.  haven't tried a pie yet.!it's fun for social gatherings.

i also enjoy mother earth livng magazine which used to be called herbs. it's an nice blend of tips and receipes. easy on the eyesgood luck.

  • Sun, Nov 10, 2013 - 03:05pm


    Nervous Nelly

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    I’ll add these to the list.

Hi Rayne,

I'll add these to the already good list. On Amazon you can see how people rated the books and most the the time you can look inside the index …..  

Preserving Food without Freezing or Canning: Traditional Techniques Using Salt, Oil, Sugar, Alcohol, Vinegar,… by The Gardeners and Farmers of Centre Terre Vivante, Deborah Madison and Eliot Coleman (Apr 4, 2007)


Seed to Seed: Seed Saving and Growing Techniques for Vegetable Gardeners, 2nd by Suzanne Ashworth, David Cavagnaro and Kent Whealy (Mar 1, 2002)


The Encyclopedia of Country Living, 10th by Emery, Carla (Mar 2, 2010)

This one is probably my favorite. Covers about everything you can imagine. 





  • Sun, Nov 10, 2013 - 11:00pm



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    Small Scale Grain Raising,

Small Scale Grain Raising, 2nd Ed, Gene Logsdon

  • Mon, Nov 11, 2013 - 01:04am



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has got to be my favorite.  His first book, it's in one of these piles somewhere is still my bible, I've forgotten the title.  I do also have his Winter Harvest and Four Season Harvest which are also great as others have mentioned.  Joel Salatin's books are great, he has two or three out, more about animal husbandry.  I have books by Fukuoka, the most inspirational is The One Straw Revolution, more spiritual than practical.  I have read Lodgesons books on grain that someone else recommended and the contrary farmer.  Those to my mind are more for the experienced farmer.

One of the better books on Permaculture is Robert Kourik's Designing and maintaining your edible landscape naturally.  His work predated the recent spate of Permie books and seems that they all borrowed from him heavily.  Though I don't think he has associated himself with that movement.  Another great book on edible landscaping is Lee Reich's Landscaping with fruit, practical and easy to use resource book.

  • Mon, Nov 11, 2013 - 01:36pm



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    Let me try again

Perennial Vegetables By Eric Toensmeier. One of my favorites. Also –

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