Mini Farming by Brett L. Markham is one of those books that ought to be on everybody′s book shelf. The premise is a simple one. How to grow a maximum amount of food in a limited area, in this case, one single quarter-acre of land. Not only does Markham enjoy the ′fruits of his labors′ in tasty vegetables and such, but he also grows enough surplus to sell and earn himself about $10,000 a year. Not bad, eh?

mini farming brett l markham
Mini Farming: Self-Sufficiency on ¼ Acre by Brett L. Markham gives you the information you need to not only grow enough vegetables for your own needs, but even sell extra for thousands of dollars of spare cash. Image Credit: Skyhorse Publishing.

Personally, I love books like this! One of my early favorites was Mel Bartholomew′s classic must-read book, Square Foot Gardening. Mel showed how one can build a simple 4-foot by 4-foot raised-bed garden using wood from a used pallet and grow enough vegetables to have a fresh garden salad every day. In Mini Farming, Brett Markham goes one step further, or maybe two, in detailing excellent organic growing techniques on a slightly larger scale, but one still easily manageable for most people.

In these dark days of rising food prices and uncertain economics, skills of the like that promote self-sufficiency are the best ones to develop and hone. Markham′s book provides a good, solid framework to give the novice the courage and self-confidence to give it a try. He lists the pros and cons of various crops to select for growing. The book′s subtitle is ″Self-Sufficiency On ¼ Acre″. Markham walks us through each step, from crop selection, preparing the soil, planting, growing, caring for the crops, to harvest and even canning and long-term storage. He also goes into preserving seeds for next season and even throws in a few recipes.

If there is a flaw in Markham′s Mini Farming, it is that he misses the boat on a couple of areas that would prove useful. While he does discuss raising chickens for eggs and meat, he does not discuss raising rabbits, which is reasonably easy, nor goats, which is a good source for some dairy products. Plus, goats are just plain fun once you get used to their antics. Many years ago, I produced a booklet called ″High-Density Fruit Orchards″, which demonstrated how one can grow a ton a fruit, 2,000 pounds worth, in a very small area of 12ft x 36ft. Here, again, Markham does not cover the nuances of fruit orchards.

Still, I highly recommend Mini Farming by Brett L. Markham for those seeking to achieve ″Self-Sufficiency On ¼ Acre″. Published by Skyhorse Publishing, just follow the links below to get yourself a copy. With food prices increasing, the easiest way to combat inflation or even shortages is to become self-sufficient. With a modest investment in information and a few essential items, one can learn to grow, process and prepare food at a significant savings. Grains like wheat, corn and rice are still much cheaper to buy in bulk and process yourself as you consume them. But fruits and vegetables are easy to grow yourself and you can save a lot of money, and even eat healthier, too. Growing the right selection of crops can even put some extra cash in your pockets, too, which in these days is a Win-Win situation.

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Mini Farming: Self-Sufficiency on ¼ Acre

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