How to Grow More Vegetables. 8th Edition

How to Grow More Vegetables. 8th Edition

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Book Details
 545 p
 File Size 
 11,193 KB
 File Type
 PDF format
 1974, 1979, 1982, 1991,
 1995, 2002, 2006, 2012 by 
 Ecology Action of the Midpeninsula

About the Author
JOHN JEAVONS is the leading method developer,
teacher, and consultant for the small-scale sustainable
agricultural method known as GROW BIOINTENSIVE
Sustainable Mini-farming. He has authored, co-authored,
or edited more than forty publications on this highyielding,
resource-conserving approach. His food-raising
methods are being practiced in 142 countries and
recommended by such organizations as UNICEF, Save the
Children, and the Peace Corps.
A political science graduate of Yale University,
Jeavons worked for the United States Agency for
International Development (USAID) and Stanford
University before devoting the past 40 years to the
development of Biointensive techniques. He is the
recipient of the 1988 Boise Peace Quilt Award, the 1989
Gira􀀻e Award for public service, the 1989 Santa Fe
Living Treasure Award, and the Steward of Sustainable
Agriculture Award in 2000.
In 2006, Jeavons catalyzed the Pan-Latin America
GROW BIOINTENSIVE Sustainable Mini-Farming
Workshop in Costa Rica with participants from 21
countries. In 2007, he facilitated the Pan-Africa GROW
BIOINTENSIVE Workshop and Symposium in Kitale,
Kenya. In 2008, Jeavons co-taught a Pan-Africa GROW
BIONTENSIVE Workshop in South Africa with
BIONTENSIVE Workshop in South Africa with
participants from 7 countries. And in 2010, he taught at
a Pan-Latin America Conference and Workshop in
Mexico with participants from 21 countries. Today,
Jeavons travels constantly, advising students, teachers,
local producers, and representatives of private,
nonprofit, and governmental organizations.
The comprehensive and sustainable cropping system
developed by Jeavons enables people in all regions of
the world to grow a balanced diet on a small plot of
land. Former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Bob Bergland
said of his work, “There are probably a billion people in
the world who are malnourished. The Jeavons approach
could enable that segment of the population to feed
itself adequately for the 􀁂rst time ever. That would be a
remarkable development in this world, and would do
more to solve the problems of poverty, misery and
hunger than anything else we’ve done.”

In the early days at Chez Panisse, forty years ago, we had
to scrounge for decent beans, pick lemons from
neighbors’ trees, and hunt far and wide for a variety of
produce of any quality whatsoever. But farming has
evolved in California. We now work with, at last count,
nearly 􀀢fty local, small-scale, family-run farms that grow
—organically and sustainably—the seasonal fruits and
vegetables that are the foundation of our cooking. In
large part, we have John Jeavons to thank for this.
I met John on the twentieth birthday of Chez Panisse
just as he was preparing for the twentieth anniversary of
Ecology Action. We both had a lot to celebrate. The
work that John had begun in a small garden at Stanford
had inspired small farms on nearly every continent; he
had already worked with the Peace Corps in Togo,
helped found an agricultural center in Kenya, taught in
Mexico, and supported programs in Russia and the
Philippines. His work has gone right on inspiring, and at
a pace that is fast enough to give us real hope that we
will be able to grow sustainable communities around the world.

John’s methods are nothing short of miraculous. He
John’s methods are nothing short of miraculous. He
has shown that almost any soil can be prepared for the
planting of food, and that astonishing quantities of highquality
produce can be grown on even the most
devastated land. He has worked tirelessly to bring selfsu
􀀱ciency to the poorest people in the poorest parts of
the world. As I write, he’s preparing to share his
methods with the 􀀢ve thousand small-scale farmers from
one hundred and thirty-one countries who are expected
at Terra Madre, the biannual gathering of farmers in
Turin, Italy, organized by the eco-gastronomes of Slow
Food International. I can think of no more appropriate
place for the dissemination of his ideas.
Vandana Shiva, the outspoken Indian food activist, has
said that farms are zones of peace on this planet. A
peaceful revolution in agriculture—what I like to call the
delicious revolution—has begun, and John is one of its
most brilliant leaders. How to Grow More Vegetables
may be one of the most important how-to guides ever written.

Table of Contents
Title Page
FOREWORD by Alice Waters
PREFACE Ecology Action and the Common
Ground Project
by the Ecology Action Staff
INTRODUCTION Building Soil, Building the
History and Philosophy of the GROW
BIOINTENSIVE Method • How to Use This Book
1 Deep Soil Creation and
Getting Started—Correct Tools • Laying Out Your
Beds • Types of Deep Soil Preparation • General
Double-Digging Procedure • Considerations for
Initial Dig with Very Poor Soils • Prepared Beds
2 Sustainability
Sustainable Soil Fertility • The Loss of Soil Nutrients
and Humus • Initially Adding Nutrients and Humus to
the Soil • 100% Sustainability Impossible • The
Need for Up to 99% Sustainability • Ecology
Action’s Pursuit of Sustainability • How to Design for
Your Soil’s Fertility
3 The Use of Compost and Soil
A “Natural” System • Compost Functions • The
Process • Soil and Other Materials in the Compost
Pile • Locating the Pile • Size and Timing • Building
the Pile • Watering the Pile • Compost Curing and
Application Rates • Composting Methods
Compared • Materials to Use Minimally or Not at All
• Benefits of Compost in the Soil • Building a
Compost Pile Step-By-Step • All Compost Is Not Equal
4 Fertilization
Soil Testing • Taking a Soil Sample • pH •
Recommended Sources of Nutrients • Adding
Fertilizers and Compost • More Sustainable
5 Open-Pollinated Seeds, Seed
Propagation, Close Spacing, and
Seed Saving
Seed Planting • Seedling Flats • Flat Soil • Some
Causes of Poor Germination • Pricking Out
Seedlings • Transplanting • Spotting • Planting by
the Phases of the Moon • Watering • Shadenetting •
Mini-Greenhouses • Key Water Factors • Weeding •
Planting in Season
6 Companion Planting
Health • Rotations • Nourishing the Soil • Physical
Complementarity • Weed, Insect, and Animal
7 An Interrelated Food-Raising
System: Creating and Caring for a
Balanced Natural Ecosystem with
Insect Life
Natural Predators • Other Initiatives
8 Master Charts and Planning
Letter Codes • Vegetable and Garden Crops •
Calorie, Grain, Protein Source, and Vegetable Oil
Crops • Compost, Carbon, Organic Matter, Fodder,
and Cover Crops • Energy, Fiber, Paper, and Other
Crops • Tree and Cane Crops • Flower Spacing
Chart • Herb Spacing Chart • Planning Sheet
9 Sample Garden Plans
APPENDIX 2 The Efficacy of the GROW
Increasing Sustainable Yields and
Building Soils
APPENDIX 3 Ecology Action Publications
APPENDIX 4 Organizations
APPENDIX 5 Memberships and Ordering

Ten Speed Press and the Ten Speed Press colophon are registered
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Cover photograph (pumpkin) and spine photograph courtesy of Bountiful Gardens
Cover photograph (red chard) © iStockphoto.com/swalls
Cover photograph (soil) © iStockphoto.com/AdShooter
Cover photograph (red boots) © iStockphoto.com/cjp