"Your new book is truly wonderful. Its a major contribution to the world of comprehensive ecological design.I cannot say enough good about it."
-John Todd. Ph. D.
Founder & Chief Scientist
John Todd Ecological Design, Inc.
The Resilient Farm and Homestead is a handbook for developing regenerative human habitat systems adaptive to drought, flooding, heat, power outage, price spikes, pest pressure, and the multitude of challenges brought by climate change, peak oil, food system contamination and economic decline. The book also details leading-edge strategies for regenerating soil, water systems and human health through the design and operations of the homeastead and farm.
"Ben Falk calls his book about reviving a wornout hill farm in Vermont an example of resilience and regeneration; I call it pure natural magic. Grow rice in New England? Yes. Heat water to 155 degrees F on cold winter days at a rate of gallon a minute by piping it through a compost pile? Yes. How about dinner tonight of your own rack of lamb garnished with homegrown mushrooms? Yes. Your choice of scores of different vegetbles and fruits even in winter? Yes. Plus, your own dairy products from your own sheep. All the while, the soil producing this magic, on a site once thought little more than a wasteland, grows yearly more fertile and secure from natural calamity." - Gene Logsdon
The book covers the groundbreaking systems Ben Falk, M.A.L.D. and his team have established at the Whole Systems Design research farm over the past decade. The book includes detailed information on earthworks, water systems, rice paddies (likely the first on the planet in such a cold climate), livestock, species composition, site design and management, fuelwood production and processing, human health-soil enhancement strategies, topsoil production and remineralization, nuts, perennial food and medicine crops, and high performance buildings.
Ben Falk extends the conversation about resilience to deep resilience--resilience from the level of personal attitudes and skills to the design and creation of the maximally resilient homestead.The Resilient Farm and Homestead weaves together permaculture theory as modified by actual practice on a ten-acre Vermont farm with a thorough preparedness guide for times of climate change and greater uncertainties of all kinds and sizes. The book is greatly enhanced by numerous glorious photos of permaculture plantings as hedge rows, rice paddies, people swimming in swale-enclosed ponds, fruit and vegetable harvesting, and foraging sheep, chickens, and ducks. I particularly appreciate that Falk tells us what didn't work as well as what did. This book will be essential reading for the serious prepper as well as for everyone interested in creating a more resilient lifestyle or landscape.
—Carol Deppe, author of The Resilient Gardener: Food Production and Self-Reliance in Uncertain Times
The Resilient Farm and Homestead is more than just a book of tricks and techniques for site development, but offers actual working results of agricultural ecosystems and presents a viable home-scale model for food-producing intentional, ecosystems in cold climates and beyond. Real world farm and homestead systems are articulated with gorgeous full-color photography and dozens of landscape architectural drawings.
More book reviews here:
Some of what people have told us about the book:
"I just received your book in the mail last week and finished it in about 4 days, filling the pages with highlighted material. Well done Ben. Seriously, for someone who has read his share of books on the topic, this one furthered my knowledge and opened my mind to more design considerations and ways of thinking than anything to date."
Ben Falk, M.A.L.D is a land designer and site developer whose permaculture research farm has drawn national attention. His home landscape and studio site in Vermont's Mad River Valley serve as a proving ground and educational setting for his land design company Whole Systems Design and their workshops. The book is now shipping.
To order via Paypal - using any credit card. Please note: we cannot accept orders outside of the US - it's not practical shipping-wise via Paypal. Also, we ship to the address provides in Paypal.
Table of Contents
Chapter One: Creating a Positive Legacy while Adapting to Rapid Change
- Regeneration—Enhancing Life Systems
- Resiliency—Becoming an Adaptive Animal
- Using This Book
- Zones and Their Definitions
- Who Are “We”
- WSRF Site Specifics
- Site History
- Site Future—What’s Possible?
- Energy Cycling
- The Green Distraction and the Political Black Hole
- Exodus from Consumer Society
- Becoming Useful in the Transition
- When Systems Fail: Emergencies and Resiliency
- Planning and Design: Observation before Action
- The Designer’s Set and Setting
- Site Establishment Leverage Points
- Ecosystem Management: Steering Succession
- Resiliency and Regeneration Principles
- Understanding Your Site and Finding the Synergies
- Goals Identification and Requirements of the Design
- Assessing the Site
- Land Analysis
- Design Criteria
- Imagination: Limiting Factor to Design
- Schematic Design: Sorting Through Multiple Development Options
- Adaptating Land to Rapid Change
- Diversity and Connectivity
- Working Plans and Implementation Documents
- Brittleness and the Quest for Resiliency
- Gravity-Feed Systems
- Locating Water
- Slowing and Infiltrating Water
- An Agriculture as Diverse as the Landscape
- Water Ridges with Valleys: Keyline Agriculture
Chapter Four: Fertility Harvesting and Cycling
- Compost, Urine, Humanure, and Biochar
- Fungi: Quiet Ally to the System
- Cover Cropping and Winter Cover
- Tall-Grass Grazing
- Pasture Reclamation: Why Not to Let Your Field “Go”
- The Benefits of Mowing
- Scything: The Most Resilient Biomass Harvesting Method
- Ducks, Chickens, Dogs, and Sheep
- Grazing and Perennial Food Crop Integration
- Keyline Agriculture and Fertigation
- Leach Field Cropping: Making the Most of a Faulty System
- How Perennial Guilds Enhance Resiliency
- Staple Crops: Paddy Rice, Meat, Eggs, Fruits, and Nuts
- Annual Vegetables
- Growing Food as a Response to Toxicity
- Food Processing and Storage: Spreading Abundance across the Entire Year
Chapter Six: Adaptive Fuel and Shelter
- The Wood-Powered Homestead
- Compost –Powered Water Heating
- Managing Fuels on the Homestead Farm
- Adaptive Shelter
- Mechanical Systems
- Water: Passive Supply for the Resilient Home
Chapter Seven: Resilience and Regeneration for the Long Haul
- Enhancing Vitality in a Time of Biospheric Toxicity
- Growing Health and Resistance, Not Just Calories
- Money: One (Important) Means to Get Work Done
Appendix A: Assessing Resiliency Aptitude Quiz
Appendix B: Practical Curriculum Outline
Appendix C: Crucial Skill List for Emergencies
Appendix D: Tools and Materials
Appendix E: Homestead Vulnerability Checklist and Strategy Summary to Reduce Vulnerability in Acute Events
Appendix F: Vocabulary and Concepts
Appendix G: Resources