Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times

Front Cover
New Society Publishers, 2006 - Gardening - 340 pages
59 Reviews

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.

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Some really helpful gardening advice. - Goodreads
Good introduction to vegetable gardening - Goodreads
Practical advice for novice gardeners. - Goodreads
I will reference this every year. - Goodreads
I will be following his advice in my garden next year. - Goodreads

Review: Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times

User Review  - Eric - Goodreads

Some really helpful gardening advice. It's fairly intense for the average gardener but it will be a good book to refer back to in the future. Read full review

Review: Gardening When It Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times

User Review  - Barbara Longair - Goodreads

An alternative to the intensive square foot gardening approach. The author's suggestions are posited as absolutes which I find unhelpful. Read full review

About the author (2006)

Steve Solomon is a well-known west coast gardening guru, and author of five previous books. The founder of Territorial Seed Company, he has taught Master Gardener and Urban Farm classes at the University of Oregon in Eugene. His book, Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades has appeared in five editions.

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