By Annie St. Francis – Reprinted with permission from The Repository Project
The Backyard Homestead: Produce all the food you need on just a quarter acre! An excellent source of inspiration and ideas for anyone just starting out, and seriously interested in the self-sufficiency of a small scale homestead. Editor Carleen Madigan shares great tips for success in every aspect of a small homestead from garden planning for maximum plant diversity and production to the summer fun of making your own ice cream.
Lots of extras are built into each enjoyably readable chapter. Recommendations for raspberries includes region specific recommendations for variety selections. Her chapter on fruit trees includes primers on pollination, pruning, and a recipe for old-fashioned peach preserves. Essential herbs capture the imagination, and Madigan covers the subject well with an overview of 32 popular choices. Discover flavored vinegars and learn to make your very own herbal teas. Explore the possibility of growing wheat, and expand the ways in which you cook with grains. Add grape vines to your garden, and perhaps nut trees too. Keep chickens, turkeys, ducks, and geese. Goats. Sheep. Cattle. Rabbits. The Backyard Homestead shares important perspective and tips for the small scale care and keeping of farm animals to meat preservation including the use of smokehouses. Homesteaders also have a great love of dairy for all its uses, and this title covers the basics of making delicious cheese, and the special treat of homemade ice cream just right for a sundae or summer cone.
The Backyard Homestead includes helpful resources for each of the subjects, a bibliography of other Storey books readers might find interesting and helpful, a USDA Hardiness Zone Map for gardeners and growers, a selection of municipal codes related to the keeping of chickens, and a well organized subject index.
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A Thoughtful Quote to Share
“The greatest fine art of the future will be the making of a comfortable living from a small piece of land.” – Abraham Lincoln