New Books For Gardening

Spring is on the horizon when the gardening books start showing up on shelves. We have had a number of titles come for review, and with the long nights, I have had a lot more free time to simply read. I love looking for new ideas to try out each spring and I wasn’t disappointed in this grouping.

Countertop Gardens: Easily Grow Kitchen Edibles Indoors for Year-Round Enjoyment

Have you thought about growing year-round? This is an interesting book for those who don’t have a lot of outdoor growing space or who live in cold areas. If you have one of the fancy countertop growing setups you will find a lot to guide you. I don’t, however there is also plenty on DIY versions. While it isn’t something I am particularly into, it does play into what we do in our greenhouse, so it is something to keep on hand for future reference.

No-Waste Kitchen Gardening

Take the concept of green living even a step farther: recycle your kitchen waste into new plants. You see Pintrest posts and memes a lot about this – regrowing green onions, celery and living lettuce. It dives into it much farther, even growing the tops of root vegetables for winter greens inside. I found this book to great for teaching children more on how to recycle before you compost.

All New Square Foot Gardening

When we did urban gardening, square foot gardening was something everyone I knew practiced. If you have little space to grow vegetables but want to, you might as well get the solid guide on it. Even those with just a strip of lawn can do it! (Well, you could even build beds on top of concrete if it came to it……)

Mastering the Art of Vegetable Gardening

This gorgeously shot book deserves to be left out for everyone to wander through. If anything it will start discussions on how they had no idea you could get “x” in those colors! It can open up a whole new world for the reader.

The Beekeeper’s Lab

If you are a beekeeper, or just love playing with beeswax, honey and similar – or are looking for home-schooling ideas for children, the Beekeeper’s Lab book is a fun book. Laid out in color, with many photos, it has many projects to try.

FTC Disclaimer: Some of the titles we received complimentary for potential review.

Book Review: Creating Your Off-Grid Homestead: Radical Inspiration and Practical Advice

After buying my copy of the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle 2018 this week, I was going through the Gardening and the homesteading sections – which have 16 products in the bundle!

I started reading Creating Your Off-Grid Homestead: Radical Inspiration and Practical Advice by Teri Page. I have read her blog for some time now, and her book is part of the super bundle, and at $9.95 on Amazon, it makes buying the super bundle a deal – which is $29.97 through Monday night (tonight!). So if you have considered the bundle, don’t hesitate.

Now then, why would a homesteader need a book about homesteading? To learn more! I have found that learning from others mistakes can save me time, money and a lot of frustration. It’s also a comforting feeling knowing others have gone through similar situations.

What Teri and her family have done is more than we will (most likely) do with our land. It is though interesting to see how they went from homesteading in Oregon for 14 years, with a well, to moving to raw land in Missouri, and going fully off-grid – and doing this with small children, while homeschooling them.

Teri covers:

Why go off-grid, getting started (the planning phase), how much it can cost, and then chapters on water, shelter, outbuildings, heating and cooling, food storage and preparation, outdoor kitchens, how to cook and bake without electricity, root cellars, dealing with setting up off-grid electricity such as solar and generators, and then fun stuff of toilets, laundry, communications and animal care, and gardening and kids.

Yes, it is a lot she covers, but it is well broken down and easy to read.

Pick up her book – or pick up the bundle. You won’t regret it!

~Sarah

Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle 2018

In My Homesteading Book Pile Currently

Kirk and I drove down to Oregon to attend the Mother Earth News Fair this past weekend, and unlike past times, this year I brought books back with me to read. As crazy as it is, I prefer paper copies of books over digital. I like having a permanent copy that I can go back to.

My focus on the books I picked up were berries and medicinal herbs, which are a huge part of our farm. To say I have a lot of reading coming up is taking it lightly. It might end up being till winter till I can sit and read deeply, and take notes, but I will get there.

Hopefully you might see one or two books that pick your interest and help you in your gardening!

Homegrown Berries

When I saw this book I impulse bought it. Berries are my life as a farmer – and I need all the education I can get. The book is like a manual on the how to’s and how to go farther with my work. One of our goals is having a lot more raspberries, so yeah, winter reading!

The Medicinal Herb Grower: A Guide For Cultivating Plants That Heal

After attending two of author Richo Cech talks I finally picked up this book. I have a lot to learn about growing medicinal herbs, and while I can grow most of them, some are quite tricky, so why not learn from an expert?

Making Plant Medicine

Another classic from Richo Cech, I finally picked up a copy. Let us see where it takes me.

I picked up a couple of Mother Earth News book-magazines (seriously affordable at the fair – they do these 3 for $10, and I had a 20% off coupon on top).

Mother Earth News Guide to Unusual Herbs Magazine

Mother Earth News Guide to Growing Herbs

Mother Earth News Guide to Super Herbs

And a few more books I am currently reading, that were sent to us for review:

Organic Gardening Techniques

While I may not have any aspirations to have a certified organic farm, our techniques on our farm are all done this way. I love learning new methods and ideas, which this book does have in spades. It might also have the best idea I have seen for where to put your potatoes while you wait for them to sprout.

Attracting Wildlife To Your Backyard: 101 Ways To Make Your Property Home For Creatures Great And Small

We don’t suffer a lack of birds and wildlife here, however I’d like more knowledge on making life easier for them. And who doesn’t have room to improve?

Wood Pallet DIY Projects

Because pallets are often free, and if you mess it up? Not a huge loss. Learn fun projects. Some are way above my skill set, but I have tucked it into Kirk’s reading pile!

~Sarah

Book Review: Home Gardener’s Specialist Guides

Two newly released titles this spring, out for gardening time. Each book is full-color, easy to flip through, and packed with a lot of information.

Home Gardener’s Annuals: The Complete Guide to Growing 37 Flowers in Your Backyard

Flowers. Until we became bee keepers I looked down on annuals. After all, wasn’t a berry producer more favorable? Well, I learned that lesson that the more annuals I planted, the happier my pollinators were, and oh the gardens were so much prettier. Now, I plant many types, sprinkled throughout the gardens and yard.

Home Gardener’s Perennials & Bulbs: The Complete Guide to Growing 58 Flowers in Your Backyard

Bulbs I was weird about as well until the past few years, which oddly enough garlic was cool to grow, but not flowers. A friend gave me a birthday gift a few years back of bulbs. She has moved across the country now, but every year the bulbs flower – and Regina’s gift keeps giving. If you haven’t tried out growing bulbs, be sure to take a look.

Book Review: Self-Sufficiency Handbook

Self-Sufficiency Handbook: Your Complete Guide To A Self-Sufficent Home, Garden, And Kitchen is a newly released book in 2017.

The book is written from a British viewpoint, so for American readers, you may need to look up some terms, however it plays across easy enough. The authors Alan and Gill Bridgewater have been at it long, starting in the late 1960’s. While the book doesn’t cover it all, it is a good starting point for anyone interested in living more self-sufficient, whether or not they actually live off the grid. There is nothing wrong with electricity and running water, and this book works with that.

The main topics covered are:

  • The land
  • The Self-sufficient house
  • The organic garden
  • Animal husbandry
  • The Pantry

The land section is a hue part of the book – because land is everything. What I liked in particular is the benefits and cons on each style of land: off-grid, country, in town. Each one has cons, and that is a huge decision.

The remaining sections touch lightly on the topics. You will need further books to do DIY projects, but you might learn of these items through this book, if you didn’t know about them before.

Is it a complete book? No. It is however an excellent starting point.

FTC Disclaimer: We received a review copy.