a mushroom with a story

posted April 7, 2017

book review by Samuel Oslund

Salvage capitalism, ecological assemblages, and precarity… These are a few concepts that Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing fleshes out in The Mushroom At the End of the World, a genre bending book that tracks the global economy by way of the Matsutake mushroom.

As a farmer, I have noticed that my own ways of thinking and seeing the world have shifted with each passing season. I have felt something akin to love for an animal that I knew would one day be dinner, have felt tremendous connection to invisible soil critters and life webs as I hoed through pea patches. Social scientists refer to this process as affect, the suggestion that other-than-human-beings (plants, animals, earth elements) can impact and shape our ways of being.  (more…)


the true story of a farm turned cult

posted March 15, 2017

935c41e90afcfae1c043a46d13a48bf7_original

Helen Zuman, long-time Greenhorns-follower and contributor to New Farmers Almanac, has an agricultural story to tell that is as gripping as it is disquieting– and she’s asking for help getting it published.

Helen writes, “The action unfolds on a farm in the backwoods of Western North Carolina – Zendik Farm, which, I discovered after being kicked out, was actually a cult. The story features an urge to homestead (part of what sent me hunting for a place like Zendik in the first place), firewood, wheelbarrows, snuffling bucks, outhouses, de-nailing, wild persimmons, abundant intrigue – and a glimpse of the detours aspiring agrarians were perhaps more likely to take back in the late 90s, when the beginning-farmer scene was nowhere near as robust as it is today.”

An intimate journey through the full arc of cult involvement, MATING IN CAPTIVITY shows how Zuman joined Zendik, learned its mating rituals, endured exile, and – finally – mated in the wild.

Helen has launched a thirty-day kickstarted campaign to fund the book, and rewards include advance access to the paperback, a reading (with Q&A) at a venue of your choice, and a handwritten copy of the manuscript. The campaign ends April 10.


erotic farm fiction

posted February 3, 2017

erotic fiction, greenhorns, farmer fiction

This weekend we would like to steer you towards Artemisia Rae’s  White Oak Summer, an erotic romance novel, that blends sex and farming into a lovely little fireside read.  When she’s not writing blush-worthy prose Rae is farming and helping run a local seed cooperative in Boise, Idaho.

The synopsis:

White Oak Summer is a story about self-discovery. To escape from a dead end job and a life without purpose, Kelsie Thompson accepts an internship on an organic farm. In lush western Oregon farm country, White Oak Farm owners Dana and Craig become Kelsie’s mentors in life and in love. Dana instructs her on the fine art of beekeeping and the luscious intricacies of the plant kingdom. Craig has different things to teach Kelsie and not all of them have to do with farming. Their neighbor – hunky goat farmer Joshua Murphy- complicates things with his own agenda, while the other interns struggle to find their own places in farm life. As the season unfolds, Kelsie learns as much about her sexual interests as she does about growing vegetables. With the inherent sensuality of the natural world as her backdrop, she reaps what she sows.

One reviewer exclaimed, “farm stories with sex scenes.” I can’t help but recall Kristin Kimball’s words from the Dirty Life when, out of sheer seasonal exhaustion, she and Mark began referring to farmer sex as touching hands… This sounds like a superb addition to farm fiction canon 🙂

click here for the book:

ballymoe litfest, ireland, may 19-21

posted January 25, 2017

Friends in the UK! LitFest – A Food and Drinks Literacy Festival is taking place this year on the weekend of 19-21st May 2017 in Ballymoe, Ireland.

The full program of events is now published so check it out and book the events that you’re interested in here…

Litfest is the only festival of its kind in Ireland and has created an important hub for food and drinks enthusiasts worldwide to meet and share ideas with each other.

Check out the list of fantastic participants who will be taking part at Litfest17. And buy tickets here!



sweet herbal remedy book and GH almanac release party, brooklyn, dec. 10!

posted December 9, 2016

chronicle_natures_remedies_web_cover

Dec 10th Book Release Party: Nature’s Remedies & New Farmers Almanac

Calling all fellow Greenhorns, plant lovers, and herb nerds! 

It’s Jean Willoughby here, and I can easily be described by all three of those lovely, earthbound designations. I hope you’ll join me and an amazing group of folks at the Third Root Community Health Center, a worker-owned cooperative in Brooklyn, for a book release party this Saturday, December 10th.

We’re getting together to celebrate the launch of my book Nature’s Remedies: An Illustrated Guide to Healing Herbs (Chronicle Books). We’ve also teamed up with Greenhorns folks to usher in the release of the latest edition of The New Farmers Almanac.

I’m planning to give a short talk, sort of a ‘people’s history of herbal medicine,’ that I’m excited to share with the Greenhorns community. We’re also going to be joined by a few herbalists, who will be on hand with their wares. Come get some healing, nourishing, and delicious gifts for your loved ones and learn more about medicinal herbs.

Nature’s Remedies & New Farmers Almanac
Book Release Party
Saturday, Dec. 10th, 2016
6:30 pm to 9:30 pm
Third Root Community Health Center
380 Marlborough Rd, Brooklyn, New York 

+ Food & Drink
+ Herb-infused Meads
+ Meet farmers, medicine makers, and herbalists who will be there with their wares
+ 100% of Nature’s Remedies book sales will benefit Third Root!

Get more event info or RSVP: http://bit.ly/dec10releaseparty

I hope to see you there!
Green forever,

Jean

Ps. Our new site for herb curious folks: www.HerbCurious.com


color au natural

posted August 2, 2016

9781607749363

I know there are some serious DYIers in the audience– and I bet that if I were to draw a ven diagram with DIY folks in one circle and who would rather walk around naked than put chemical dyes close to their skin, those two circles might just have some overlap…

Those in this middle area of the graph might seriously want to check out this new book by Sasha Duerr. Natural Color is a comprehensive guide to plant dyes and compost coloring. (Sasha taught a great Greenhorns workshop years ago in Pescadero on using weeds and farm bi-products to make natural dyes, so we feel as though we are in a position to give her advice our personal stamp of approval.) Copies of the book are available to preorder from Penguin Random House today.


“the farmer’s office”

posted July 29, 2016

Outdoor_office

Are you feeling cool, calm, collected? If not, try reading Julia Shenk’s “ The Farmers Office: Tools tips and templates to successfully manage a growing farm business”.

Comprehensive, logical, holistic and witty— she lays out the steps and frameworks for a solvent and sustainable farm business. She’s got the chops, and she’s witty. Thats already a lot when you have to learn the terminology, how to run the software, implications for record-keeping and cash flow management, and testing questions. Farming may be hard, honest work— it is also a hard business, and one that must be mastered.  Dear Greenhorns:

Use this book, stay in business, for the earth!


techno-utopia reading list!

posted October 23, 2014

Annual E. F. Schumacher Lectures:
Cold Evil: Technology and Modern Ethics by Andrew Kimbrell
Buddhist Technology: Bringing a New Consciousness to Our Technological Future by Arthur Zajonc
The Community’s Role in Appropriate Technology by George McRobie
Books:
New Dimensions of Appropriate Technology: Selected Proceedings of the 1979 Symposium by Alfred L. Edwards
Appropriate Technology and Social Values: A Critical Appraisal by the American Academy Of Arts and Sciences, edited by Franklin A. Long and Alexandra Oleson
Soft Energy Paths: Towards a Durable Peace by Amory Lovins
Fatal Harvest: The Tragedy Of Industrial Agriculture by Andrew Kimbrell
Sowing Resistance: The Third World Speaks Out on Genetic Engineering by Anuradha Mittal and Ellen Hickey
The Future in the Balance: Essays on Globalization and Resistance by Anuradha Mittal and Walden Bello
The Culture of Technology by Arnold Pacey
Making Peace With the Planet by Barry Commoner
The End of Nature by Bill McKibben
The Age of Missing Information by Bill McKibben
Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet by Bill McKibben
Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future by Bill McKibben
Supply Shock: Economic Growth at the Crossroads and the Steady State Solution by Brian Czech and Herman Daly
The Resurgence Of The Real: Body, Nature, And Place In A Hypermodern World by Charlene Spretnak
When Technology Wounds: The Human Consequences of Progress by Chellis Glendinning
Let Them Eat Data: How Computers Affect Education, Cultural Diversity, and the Prospects of Ecological Sustainability  by Chet A. Bowers
Cognitive Surplus: How Technology Makes Consumers into Collaborators by Clay Shirky
Requiem for a Species: Why We Resist the Truth about Climate Change by Clive Hamilton
Growth Fetish by Clive Hamilton
The God That Limps: Science and Technology in the Eighties by Colin Norman
The Circle by Dave Eggers
The Transparent Society: Will Technology Force Us To Choose Between Privacy And Freedom? By David Brin
The Arrogance of Humanism by David Ehrenfeld
Swimming Lessons: Keeping Afloat in the Age of Technology by David Ehrenfeld
Beginning Again: People and Nature in the New Millennium by David Ehrenfeld
The Uncertain Promise: Value Conflicts in Technology Transfer by Denis Goulet
Rays of Hope: The Transition to a Post-Petroleum World by Denis Hayes
Energy: Crisis or Opportunity?: An Introduction to Energy Studies by Diana Schumacher
Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age by Douglas Rushkoff
Schumacher on Energy by E. F. Schumacher
Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered by E. F. Schumacher
Why Things Bite Back: Technology and the Revenge of Unintended Consequences by Edward Tenner
Gaia in Turmoil: Climate Change, Biodepletion, and Earth Ethics in an Age of Crisis by Eileen Crist and H. Rinker
Life on the Brink: Environmentalists Confront Overpopulation by Eileen Crist and Philip Cafaro
The Revolution of Hope: Toward a Humanized Technology by Erich Fromm
Ecotopia Emerging by Ernest Callenbach
To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism by Evgeny Morozov
Nuclear Roulette: The Truth about the Most Dangerous Energy Source on Earth by Gar Smith
Small Is Possible by George McRobie
Technophobia: Getting Out of the Technology Trap by Harold Hellman
Nuclear Power Is Not the Answer by Helen Caldicott
Ancient Futures: Lessons from Ladakh for a Globalizing World by Helena Norberg-Hodge
The Future of Progess: Reflections on Environment and Development by Helena Norberg-Hodge and Edward Goldsmith
From the Ground Up: Rethinking Industrial Agriculture by Helena Norberg-Hodge and John Page
The Technological Society by Jacques Ellul
Too Much Magic: Wishful Thinking, Technology, and the Fate of the Nation by James Howard Kunstler
World Made by Hand: The World Made by Hand Novels, Book 1 by James Howard Kunstler and Jim Meskimen
The End of the Future: The Waning of the High-Tech World by Jean Gimpel
The Coming Energy Revolution: The Search for Free Energy by Jeane Manning
The Capitalism Papers: Fatal Flaws of an Obsolete System by Jerry Mander
In the Absence of the Sacred by Jerry Mander
Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television by Jerry Mander
Machina Ex Dea: Feminist Perspectives on Technology by Joan Rothschild
Green Wizardry: Conservation, Solar Power, Organic Gardening, and Other Hands-On Skills From the Appropriate Tech Toolkit by John Michael Greer
Not the Future We Ordered: Peak Oil, Psychology, and the Myth of Progress by John Michael Greer
Questioning Technology: Tool, Toy or Tyrant? by John Zerzan and Alice Carnes
The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
An Electronic Silent Spring: Facing the Dangers and Creating Safe Limits by Katie Singer
Appropriate Technology Sourcebook: A Guide to Practical Books for Village and Small Community Technology by Ken Darrow and Mike Saxenian
Human Scale by Kirkpatrick Sale
Stepping Stones: Appropriate Technology and Beyond by Lane De Moll and Gigi Coe
Autonomous Technology: Technics-Out-Of-Control as a Theme in Political Thought by Langdon Winner
The Whale and the Reactor: A Search for Limits in an Age of High Technology by Langdon Winner
Proving Up: Domesticating Land in U.S. History by Lisi Krall
Oryx and Crake (MaddAddam Trilogy #1) by Margaret Atwood
The AT Reader: Theory and Practice in Appropriate Technology by Marilyn Carr
Tinker, Tiller, Technical Change by Matthew Gamser
Techno-Fix: Why Technology Won’t Save Us Or the Environment by Michael Huesemann and Joyce Huesemann
Architect or Bee?: The Human/Technology Relationship by Mike Cooley
Technopoly: The Surrender of Culture to Technology by Neil Postman
The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains by Nicholas Carr
Appropriate Technology: Problems and Promises by Nicolas Jéquier
Technology, Transfer and Human Values: Concepts, Applications, Cases by Peter B. Heller
Appropriate Technology: Technology with a Human Face by Peter D. Dunn
Radical Technology by Peter Harper
Earthwalk by Philip Slater
Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth by R. Buckminster Fuller
Unstoppable: The Emerging Left-Right Alliance to Dismantle the Corporate State by Ralph Nader
Unsafe at Any Speed by Ralph Nader
Appropriate Technology: Precepts And Practices by Ram Dass and Richard Alpert
Appropriate Visions: Technology, the Environment, and the Individual by Richard C. Dorf
The Party’s Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies by Richard Heinberg
Peak Everything: Waking Up to the Century of Declines by Richard Heinberg
Powerdown: Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World by Richard Heinberg
Turning Away from Technology: A New Vision for the 21st Century by Stephanie Mills
On Gandhi’s Path: Bob Swann’s Work for Peace and Community Economics by Stephanie Mills
In Praise of Nature by Stephanie Mills
Epicurean Simplicity by Stephanie Mills
Energy: Overdevelopment and the Delusion of Endless Growth by Tom Butler
Water Wars: Privatization, Pollution, and Profit by Vandana Shiva
Stolen Harvest: The Hijacking of the Global Food Supply by Vandana Shiva
Soil Not Oil: Environmental Justice in an Age of Climate Crisis by Vandana Shiva
Biopiracy: The Plunder of Nature and Knowledge by Vandana Shiva
Village Technology Handbook by the Volunteers In Technical Assistance (VITA), edited by Leonard Doak
New Roots for Agriculture by Wes Jackson
Becoming Native to This Place by Wes Jackson
Altars Of Unhewn Stone: Science And The Earth by Wes Jackson
Appropriate Technology in Industrialized Countries by Willem Riedijk
Recovering the Sacred: The Power of Naming and Claiming by Winona LaDuke
All Our Relations: Native Struggles for Land and Life by Winona LaDuke
Taming the Tiger: The Struggle to Control Technology by Witold Rybczynski
Paper Heroes: A Review Of Appropriate Technology by Witold Rybczynski
Film/TV:
Surviving Progress (2011) written/directed by Mathieu Roy and Harold Crooks
“The rise of personal robots.” 2010 by Cynthia Breazeal at TEDWomen.
“The new bionics that let us run, climb and dance.” (2014) by Hugh Herr at TED2014
Next Generation TV: Standing Up for Our Future (www.nextgeneration.tv)
Magazine:
Geez founded by Aiden Enns and Will Braun

conspicuous carnivores

posted November 30, 2007

In this week’s New Yorker, Bill Buford delivers, with his usual finger-licking enthusiasm, a digest of three new books about meat. Though varying in tones of hopeful agrarianism, tongue-in-cheek indulgence, and gritty slaughterhouse realism, these authors (each in his early 40s) all nod to a Greenhorns ethos: you and your butcher should be on a first name basis. Buford introduces the three authors the same way we want to introduce The Greenhorns:

“And yet, at a time when things could not seems worse, there is a generation of people (in their forties and younger) who are thinking hard and philosophically about their food and are prepared to declare: Enough! I’m a meat-eater and proud of it!” (Bill Buford)

Sub “meat-eater” for “young grower” and you’ve got our mission statement.

Check out Buford’s favorite of the lot, Hugh-Fearnley-Whittingstall, an unexpected British foodie celebrity who has not just gone back-to-land, but back to all the guts and gore of raising and cooking game. He discovered his passion for food in a restaurant kitchen where he learned how to turn each season’s bounty into a gastronomical adventure. HFW has since been articulating this adventure at the “great agrarian laboratory” River Cottage in the UK.dewolf_clamming.jpg

We’re pretty sure our friend and fellow film contributor Dewolf Emery (seen here gathering clams on Cumberland Island) is going to do something similar here in the US. Look out.