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Category — Book

The Backyard Orchardist

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A complete guide to growing fruit trees in the home garden, 2nd Edition

By Stella Otto
Illustrated by Glenn Wolff
Foreword by Peter Hatch
Chelsea Green
Nov 2015

For novice and experienced fruit gardeners alike, The Backyard Orchardist: A complete guide to growing fruit trees in the home garden has been the go-to book for home orchardists for over 2 decades. This expanded and updated edition–organized into 6 easy-to-follow sections–offers even more hands-on horticulture. Award-winning author Stella Otto starts by systematically guiding readers through the all-important first steps of planning and planting the home orchard. Learn to:

• evaluate and build healthy soil

• choose the best planting site

• select fruit trees that are easy to grow and appropriate for your climate

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February 6, 2016   No Comments

The Hop Grower’s Handbook

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The Essential Guide for Sustainable, Small-Scale Production for Home and Market

By Laura Ten Eyck and Dietrich Gehring
Chelsea Green
Sept 2015

It’s hard to think about beer these days without thinking about hops.

The runaway craft beer market’s convergence with the ever-expanding local foods movement is helping to spur a local-hops renaissance. The demand from craft brewers for local ingredients to make beer—such as hops and barley—is robust and growing. That’s good news for farmers looking to diversify, but the catch is that hops have not been grown commercially in the eastern United States for nearly a century.

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February 4, 2016   No Comments

‘The Farm on the Roof’ about Brooklyn Grange

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Coming April 5, 2016 – The founders of Brooklyn Grange, the world’s largest green rooftop farm, share their inspirational story of changing the world through entrepreneurship.

The Farm on the Roof: What Brooklyn Grange Taught Us About Entrepreneurship, Community, and Growing a Sustainable Business
By Anastasia Cole Plakias
Avery (April 5, 2016)
288 pages

In their effort to build the world’s first and largest commercial green rooftop farm, the founders of Brooklyn Grange learned a lot about building and sustaining a business while never losing sight of their mission—to serve their community by providing delicious organic food and changing the way people think about what they eat. But their story is about more than just farming. It serves as an inspirational and instructional guide for anyone looking to start a business that is successful while making a positive impact.

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January 20, 2016   Comments Off on ‘The Farm on the Roof’ about Brooklyn Grange

Philosophy Comes to Dinner – Arguments About the Ethics of Eating

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What the freegan is this?

Edited by Andrew Chignell, Terence Cuneo, Matthew C. Halteman
Routledge
2016

Press Release:

Everyone is talking about food. Chefs and food critics are celebrities. “Locavore” and “freegan” have earned spots in the dictionary. Popular books and films about food production and consumption are exposing the unintended consequences of the standard American diet. Questions about the principles and values that ought to guide decisions about dinner have become urgent for moral, ecological, and health-related reasons. So, as we begin a New Year and perhaps the inevitable resolution of ‘new diet new me’, which ethical corner will you be in at the dinner table?

In Philosophy Comes to Dinner, twelve philosophers—some leading voices, some inspiring new ones—join the conversation, and consider issues from the sustainability of modern agriculture, to consumer complicity in animal exploitation, as well as the pros and cons of alternative diets.

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January 13, 2016   Comments Off on Philosophy Comes to Dinner – Arguments About the Ethics of Eating

The Royal Horticultural Society’s Allotment Handbook

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What to Do When to Get the Most from Your Plot

By The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS)
Mitchell Beazley (October 15, 2015)
224 pages

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) is the UK’s largest gardening charity, dedicated to advancing horticulture and promoting good gardening. Its charitable work includes providing expert advice and information, training the next generation of gardeners and promoting the ecological, aesthetic and psychological benefits of gardening in an urban environment. The RHS has 415,000 members.

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January 7, 2016   Comments Off on The Royal Horticultural Society’s Allotment Handbook

Food Forestry North of the 49th

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Over twenty years, Walker transformed a degraded three-acre property into the first food forest in Canada.

By Richard Walker
2015

Food forest gardening is a food production and land management system based on replicating woodland ecosystems, but substituting food trees (such as fruit or nut trees), bushes, shrubs, herbs and vegetables, which have yields directly useful to humans as well as pollinator insect species. By using the premise of “companion planting”, these can be intermixed to grow on multiple levels in the same area, as do plants in a forest. Food forestry both traps carbon and stores water, mitigating climate and its effects.

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December 28, 2015   Comments Off on Food Forestry North of the 49th

RUAF Update Number. 26

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RUAF – Resource Centres on Urban Agriculture and Food Security

RUAF
December 16, 2015

Ongoing activities:

• City of Windhoek promotes urban agriculture
• City region food system assessment started in 7 cities
• Workshop on safe and productive use of wastes for urban and peri-urban agriculture in Kenya
• Value chain development and policy review for local agriculture in Gaza
• Developing a city strategic agenda for the Tamale Metropolis
• Third project meeting URBAN GREEN TRAIN in Rotterdam

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December 16, 2015   Comments Off on RUAF Update Number. 26

USDA to Publish ‘Urban Farming Toolkit’ says USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack tours a local farmers market in Havana, Cuba on Nov. 13, 2015.

“It would essentially provide a step-by-step process if you are interested in establishing an urban farm.”

By Brian Barth
Modern Farmer
December 11, 2015

Excerpt:

Modern Farmer: Did seeing Cuba’s urban farms spark any ideas for you?

Tom Vilsack: Not so much spark any ideas, but seeing the incorporation of urban farming into a strategy for utilization of land in urban settings [was] quite a bit like the activity we’re seeing in the US. We’re actually putting together—it’s not quite ready for publication—but we are putting together an urban farming toolkit that would essentially provide a step-by-step process if you are interested in establishing an urban farm.

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December 12, 2015   Comments Off on USDA to Publish ‘Urban Farming Toolkit’ says USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack

Urban Allotment Gardens in Europe

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Forthcoming 2016

Edited by Simon Bell, Runrid Fox-Kämper, Nazila Keshavarz, Mary Benson, Silvio Caputo, Susan Noori, Annette Voigt
Routledge
2016

Although urban allotment gardening dates back to the nineteenth century, it has recently undergone a renaissance of interest and popularity. This is the result of greater concern over urban greenspace, food security and quality of life. This book presents a comprehensive, research-based overview of the various features, benefits and values associated with urban allotment gardening in Europe.

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December 8, 2015   Comments Off on Urban Allotment Gardens in Europe

Informal Urban Agriculture: The Secret Lives of Guerrilla Gardeners

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First major critical evaluation of guerrilla gardening in the UK

By Michael Hardman and Peter Larkham
Springer
Fall 2015

The book explores how unused and under-used urban spaces – from grass verges, roundabouts, green spaces – have been made more visually interesting and more productive, by informal (and usually illegal) groups known as “guerrilla gardeners”. The book focuses on groups in the English Midlands but the work is set in a broad international context and reveals how and why they undertake this illegal activity.

Guerrilla gardening is usually viewed uncritically and promoted as a worthwhile activity: this study provides a more balanced evaluation and focuses on its contribution in terms of local food production.

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December 8, 2015   Comments Off on Informal Urban Agriculture: The Secret Lives of Guerrilla Gardeners

Center for Ecoliteracy in Berkeley – 20 years old

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We’re creating an ebook that will bring soil to life for elementary school students, an interactive guide exploring the links between climate change and food systems, and a new resource focusing on water, power, and the environment.

By Zenobia Barlow
Cofounder & Executive Director
Center for Ecoliteracy

Excerpt from ‘Cultivating 20 Years of Ecoliteracy’:

School Gardens

The Center supported school gardens early, before becoming the first funder of the Edible Schoolyard (ESY) at Martin Luther King, Jr. Middle School in Berkeley in 1996. “Their grant was the catalyst,” said ESY founder Alice Waters.
“The Center sees a very big picture, and has understood deeply what we are trying to do.” The Center offered teacher training at King for a decade.

That engagement set the pattern for later garden projects, especially the emphasis on integrating experiences in gardens, cooking classes, and cafeterias with classroom learning. The Center provided release time and teacher consultation, created and reviewed curricula, and illustrated ways to address academic standards through garden-based learning.

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December 6, 2015   Comments Off on Center for Ecoliteracy in Berkeley – 20 years old

The Urban Farmer: Growing Food for Profit on Leased and Borrowed Land

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Just released, December 2015!

By Curtis Stone
New Society Publishers
(Dec 1 2015)

There are 40 million acres of lawns in North America. In their current form, these unproductive expanses of grass represent a significant financial and environmental cost. However, viewed through a different lens, they can also be seen as a tremendous source of opportunity. Access to land is a major barrier for many people who want to enter the agricultural sector, and urban and suburban yards have huge potential for would-be farmers wanting to become part of this growing movement.

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December 5, 2015   Comments Off on The Urban Farmer: Growing Food for Profit on Leased and Borrowed Land

Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living

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Compost City serves all eco-curious citizens from casual hobbyists to staunch activists.

By Rebecca Louie
Roost Books
May 19, 2015

Along with backyard chickeners, balcony beekeepers, rooftop farmers, and community gardeners, urban composters are part of a bumper crop of pioneers who are redefining the green space of crowded towns and cities.

You may think you need a big yard to compost. Think again. Compost City teaches you how to easily choose and care for a compost system that fits perfectly into your (tiny) space, (busy) schedule, and (multifaceted) lifestyle.

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December 3, 2015   Comments Off on Compost City: Practical Composting Know-How for Small-Space Living

Family Urban Agriculture in Russia: Lessons and Prospects

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The rediscovery of urban agriculture came in successive waves beginning in the 1970’s

By Louiza Boukharaeva (Author), Marcel Marloie (Author)
Springer Books
2015

A significant phenomenon that affects nearly two-thirds of Russian city-dwellers, family urban agriculture – with its allotment gardens, allotment vegetable gardens, and dacha allotments – grew out of a unique history and cultural representations. The contemporary Urban Grower in Russia holds a legacy of the famines and traumatisms of the Second World War, which prompted Soviet authorities to encourage the development of allotments and gardening education, which they had previously opposed.

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December 1, 2015   Comments Off on Family Urban Agriculture in Russia: Lessons and Prospects

Grow Gardeners: Kid-Tested Gardening with Children

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By Emma Biggs And Steven Biggs
Illustrated by Emma Biggs
2015

My daughter, Emma, sowed the seed for this book.

I remember the day clearly. I watched her playing at her pretend kitchen, arranging small plates, utensils, and cups in the cupboards.

In this kitchen, she loved to “cook” treats for everyone. The main ingredient in her imaginary recipes was little bits of paper. We would often find Emma with paper and scissors. “What are you doing?” my wife, Shelley, and I asked. “Making treats,” she always answered, matter-of-factly, as bits of paper flew everywhere.

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November 27, 2015   Comments Off on Grow Gardeners: Kid-Tested Gardening with Children