Monday, June 17, 2013

Book Review :: The Backyard Homesteader By Carleen Madigan

The Backyard Homestead: Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre!
The Backyard Homestead:
Produce All The Food You Need On Just A Quarter Acre!
By Carleen Madigan
Title: The Backyard Homestead
Author: Carleen Madigan
Source: Review book from the publisher
Number Of Pages: 368
ISBN: 1603421386
Publisher: Storey Publishing
Publication Date: February 2009
My Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

Book Description {Taken From GoodReads):
"Put your backyard to work! Enjoy fresher, organic, better-tasting food all the time. The solution is as close as your own backyard. Grow the vegetables and fruits your family loves; keep bees; raise chickens, goats, or even a cow. The Backyard Homestead shows you how it's done. And when the harvest is in, you'll learn how to cook, preserve, cure, brew, or pickle the fruits of your labor.

From a quarter of an acre, you can harvest 1,400 eggs, 50 pounds of wheat, 60 pounds of fruit, 2,000 pounds of vegetables, 280 pounds of pork, 75 pounds of nuts."
Book Review ::
I have always enjoyed the thought of producing your home-grown food in your own backyard and the idea of making things yourself like cheese, ice-cream, butter, etc. I just love the homesteading premise and though I've not been able to put it into much practice since we don't have a lot of land, we have recently endeavored to plant a garden and raise chickens, and I found this book very helpful in the process of getting advice on both gardening, chicken raising and a bunch of other homesteading related things.
This book basically contains nearly everything you will ever need to know for beginner homesteaders, and provides a bunch of helpful illustrations, recopies, tips and tricks as well as advice for all things homesteading. The topics covered in this book include:
  • Gardening
  • Canning
  • Growing Fruits
  • How to make homemade apple cider
  • How to make vinegar
  • How to grow herbs
  • How to make homemade teas
  • Growing corn, wheat, etc.
  • Bread-making
  • Chicken/Turkey/Duck/Goat/Sheep/Pig/Rabbit raising/butchering
  • How to milk both cows and goats
  • How to make sausage and jerky
  • Cheese-making
  • Butter-making
  • Ice-Cream  making
  • Beekeeping
  • Foraging
  • How to make maple syrup
So as you can see, this book is loaded with information on a bunch of different homesteading topics, and I found the information given to be very helpful and informative. I also found the recipes, to be a nice addition to the book, and there were a bunch throughout the book with full instructions details.
This summer our family started a small backyard garden and got 5 chickens, which is more than we have ever done in the homesteading area so far. Needless to say we quite new to the idea of garden and raising chickens, but this book was very helpful and had lots of information. The area on gardening was very extensive and not only showed you how to start seedlings, but also how to transplant them, and tips for the best growing, etc. It also gave a paragraph on each of the vegetables and fruits that you can grow with information on that specific plant and tips on when ands how to plant them.
I'd highly recommend this book to anyone who is wanting to garden, or begin homesteading, and is looking for a informative guide that has information on a variety of topics to get you started. This guide is a great resource to have on hand!
N o t e :: I'd like to sincerely thank Storey publishers for the opportunity to review this book. All thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own, and unbiased, and honest, and that I was not paid to read and review a copy of The Backyard Homestead.