Gardening When It Counts Growing Food in Hard Times

ISBN-10: 086571553X
ISBN-13: 9780865715530
Edition: 2006
Authors: Steve Solomon
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Description: The decline of cheap oil is inspiring increasing numbers of North Americans to achieve some measure of backyard food self-sufficiency. In hard times, the family can be greatly helped by growing a highly productive food garden, requiring little cash  More...

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Book details

List price: $21.95
Copyright year: 2006
Publisher: New Society Publishers, Limited
Publication date: 4/1/2006
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 360
Size: 5.75" wide x 9.00" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.408
Language: English

The decline of cheap oil is inspiring increasing numbers of North Americans to achieve some measure of backyard food self-sufficiency. In hard times, the family can be greatly helped by growing a highly productive food garden, requiring little cash outlay or watering. Currently popular intensive vegetable gardening methods are largely inappropriate to this new circumstance. Crowded raised beds require high inputs of water, fertility and organic matter, and demand large amounts of human time and effort. But, except for labor, these inputs depend on the price of oil. Prior to the 1970s, North American home food growing used more land with less labor, with wider plant spacing, with less or no irrigation, and all done with sharp hand tools. But these sustainable systems have been largely forgotten. Gardening When It Counts helps readers rediscover traditional low-input gardening methods to produce healthy food. Designed for readers with no experience and applicable to most areas in the English-speaking world except the tropics and hot deserts, this book shows that any family with access to 3-5,000 sq. ft. of garden land can halve their food costs using a growing system requiring just the odd bucketful of household waste water, perhaps two hundred dollars worth of hand tools, and about the same amount spent on supplies - working an average of two hours a day during the growing season. Steve Solomon is a well-known west coast gardener and author of five previous books, including Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades which has appeared in five editions.

Introduction
The coming hard times
Getting land
Becoming a vegetableatarian
Basics
What is a vegetable?
Helping plants grow
Increasing soil fertility
Summary
Tools and tasks
The basic three and a file
How to start a new garden
Raised beds and raised rows
The bow rake
Restoring a raised bed for planting again
The hoe
Miscellaneous tools
Care of tools
Garden centers
Transplants: Buyer beware
Growing your own seedlings the easy way
The garden center seedrack
Seeds
The mail-order seed business
Who to buy from
Making seeds come up
Saving on seed purchases
Growing your own
Watering ... and not
Four spacing systems
Not suffering drought
A gardener's textbook of sprinkler irrigation
Compost
Why compost?
Making low-grade compost
Medium-quality compost: The once-a-year heap
Humanure
Green manure and cover crops
Insects and diseases
Avoiding trouble
Insects and their remedies
Diseases and their remedies
What to grow ... and how to grow it
Some general tips
Crops that are easiest to grow
Crops that are harder to grow
Difficult vegetables
Bibliography
Books
Online resources
Index
About the Author

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