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Attracting Native Pollinators: The Xerces Society Guide Protecting North America's Bees and Butterflies
The recent decline of the European honey bee and other pollinators in North America poses a serious challenge to maintaining our food supply and ecological health. According to the National Academy of Sciences, close to 75 percent of all flowering plants rely to some degree on pollinators in order to set seed or fruit. From these plants comes one-third of the planet's food, including fruit and vegetable crops, as well as forage seed crops such as alfalfa, which are critical to dairy and meat production. "Attracting Native Pollinators" is a comprehensive guidebook for gardeners, small farmers, orchardists, beekeepers, naturalists, environmentalists, and public land managers on how to protect and encourage the activity of the native pollinators of North America. Written by staff of the Xerces Society, an international nonprofit organization that is leading the way in pollinator conservation, this book presents a thorough overview of the problem along with positive solutions for how to provide bountiful harvests on farms and gardens, maintain healthy plant communinities in wildlands, provide food for wildlife, and beautify the landscape with flowers. Full-color photographs introduce readers to more than 80 species of native pollinators -- including bees, flies, butterflies, wasps, and moths -- noting each one's range and habits. The heart of the book provides detailed garden plans and techniques showing how to create flowering habitat to attract a variety of these pollinators, help expand the pollinator population, and provide pollinators with inviting nesting sites. Readers will also find useful instructions for creating nesting structures, educational activities for involving children, and an extensive list of resources. "Attracting Native Pollinators" is an essential reference book and action guide for anyone who is involved in growing food or is concerned about the future of our food supply. The Xerces Society, a nonprofit conservation organization, is a leader in the effort to conserve North America's native pollinators. Founded in 1971, the society has its headquarters in Portland, Oregon, and sponsors advocacy, education, and applied research projects across the continent aimed at protecting and managing critical habitat for pollinators.
Dirt, soil, call it what you want--it's everywhere we go. It is the root of our existence, supporting our feet, our farms, our cities. This fascinating yet disquieting book finds, however, that we are running out of dirt, and it's no laughing matter. An engaging natural and cultural history of soil that sweeps from ancient civilizations to modern times, "Dirt: The Erosion of Civilizations "explores the compelling idea that we are--and have long been--using up Earth's soil. Once bare of protective vegetation and exposed to wind and rain, cultivated soils erode bit by bit, slowly enough to be ignored in a single lifetime but fast enough over centuries to limit the lifespan of civilizations. A rich mix of history, archaeology and geology, "Dirt "traces the role of soil use and abuse in the history of Mesopotamia, Ancient Greece, the Roman Empire, China, European colonialism, Central America, and the American push westward. We see how soil has shaped us and we have shaped soil--as society after society has risen, prospered, and plowed through a natural endowment of fertile dirt. David R. Montgomery sees in the recent rise of organic and no-till farming the hope for a new agricultural revolution that might help us avoid the fate of previous civilizations.
The demand for food produced from sustainable and organic farm enterprises continues to grow worldwide, with demand exceeding supply for many items. This second edition of an extremely well received and successful book covers every aspect of an organic farm enterprise that can have an influence on profitability. As such the book is an essential purchase for all those involved in organic and sustainable farming. Topics covered in this second edition of "Profitable Organic Farming" include grassland productivity, production systems for dairy, beef, sheep, pig, poultry and arable farms, farm size and enterprise combinations, organic standards, financial management, marketing, success factors and progress by organic farmers. The book concludes with a new chapter covering potential future scenarios for organic farming. Drawing on new information available in the area and including case studies from successful organic farm businesses, the author Jon Newton has written a book that is of great commercial use to a wide range of workers including organic farm managers and those wishing to commence organic farming operations. The book is also of great use and interest to agricultural scientists and students and those working in government and regional agricultural advisory services worldwide. Libraries in research establishments, universities and colleges where agricultural sciences are studied and taught should have several copies of this important and useful book on their shelves. Review of the first edition 'It is an essential volume for any commercial organic farmers or budding organic farmers bookshelf. It will no doubt also be a very popular read and provide much food for thought amongst many agricultural students': "New Farmer & Grower." Jon Newton is an agricultural consultant specialising in organic and sustainable agriculture based in North Wales, UK.
Archeologists have always considered the beginnings of Andean civilization from ca. 13,000 to 6,000 years ago to be important in terms of the appearance of domesticated plants and animals, social differentiation, and a sedentary lifestyle, but there is more to this period than just these developments. During this period, the spread of crop production and other technologies, kinship-based labor projects, mound-building, and population aggregation formed ever-changing conditions across the Andes. From Foraging to Farming in the Andes proposes a new and more complex model for understanding the transition from hunting and gathering to cultivation. It argues that such developments evolved regionally, were fluid and uneven, and were subject to reversal. This book develops these arguments from a large body of archaeological evidence, collected over 30 years in two valleys in northern Peru, and then places the valleys in the context of recent scholarship studying similar developments around world.