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Five Acres and Independence: A Handbook for Small Farm Management Paperback


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Frequently Bought Together

Five Acres and Independence: A Handbook for Small Farm Management + Ten Acres Enough: The Classic 1864 Guide to Independent Farming + The Self-Sufficient Life and How to Live It
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 397 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications; Revised & enlarged edition (June 1, 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486209741
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486209746
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #75,428 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

This book is worth its weight in gold!
Ben
So many book paint sunshine and rainbows and make everything seem so carefree and easy that I appreciated the honesty and practicality brought by this book.
Jesse Davis
What it will do is prepare a person for the realities of small scale farming and country living.
edward

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

189 of 195 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 26, 1999
Format: Paperback
I have a 1946 edition of this book which my father used as a reference in supplying our family all of our food from 1948 until 1962 and a large portion of our food thereafter. I have referred to it on a regular basis since 1972. While the precise numbers for costs and quantity of production are dated, the basic principles for successful small farming are clearly elucidated. You can update the costs and quantities yourself. Some of the information on animal breeds should be updated by additional research. But the priciples are all here. The chapters on "City vs. Country Life" and "Tried and True Ways to Fail" are essential reading if you have never been involved in agriculture previously. I have many reference books, and this is one of the best...with a tattered cover and yellowed pages!
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193 of 201 people found the following review helpful By BearMaster on October 18, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book was one of my father's favorites, even though he never took up farming. For those considering a rural lifestyle, perhapse even self-suffiency, this has to be the starting point. However, it is the pre-war, 1940 edition. I literally cringed when I read about lining the cistern with sheet lead, or using mercuric chloride to sterilize wounds on fruit trees (it's a wonder our ancestors lived long enough to have children). I'm sure this book has a lot of good advice, but if this city boy ever moves to the farm my father never had I'll try to check all facts with a second or third source. Is there anyone who's qualified to write the 21st Century edition?
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90 of 91 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on May 16, 1999
Format: Paperback
I found the info on cropping and farming to be excellent. It was very in depth and accurate, and pretty easy for a novice to follow along. I have some problems with some of the author's advice regarding livestock, however. For instance, he recommends Belgian Hares for raising for meat. This is quite possibly the WORST rabbit for food production, being strictly a show breed notorious for it's nervous disposition that inhibits weight gain, breeding, and quite often leads to the rabbit breaking it's own legs within it's cage from panic attacks. His section on chickens is pretty good though. The production figures he offers are evidence of the time period in which it was written, however, being nearly half what is often attainable by homesteaders of today. Overall this was a good book, especially with regards to raising fruit trees, veggies, and pasture crops, but I would recommend that other books were purchased in addition to it if one needs help learning about livestock.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I looked at every book about Farming I could get my hands on and this one came out on top. I grew up on a farm and am hoping 30 years later to buy the old homestead back. I loved the detailed diagrams and explainations. Maurice went into detail on important areas like soil types and care and feeding of soil, irrigation, even waste disposal systems. He refreshed my memory on a lot of important points and taught me some things I don't even think my father knew. If I were to ask for any changes, I wish he would have included a lot more about livestock and perhaps less about orchards and growing fruit. But all in all, it deserves 5 stars. Buy this one first!!!
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 26, 1998
Format: Paperback
This is a classic text covering all of the areas of the small farm. He provides very good advice about everything from where to put your buildings to what to put in them. He provides very practical advice about plants, animals and capital expenses. For example, his comments on raising chickens for meat is very pointed, if you can't kill a chicken, don't raise them for meat. But he also goes on to describe how to house them. He advises not to be too cheap as it will cost you in the end. This practical thorough description of every aspect of a working small farm is a must for every small farmer's library. Don't be fooled by the copy right date, this book is a classic!
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 21, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book contains easy-to-follow guidelines and plans for those who wish to free themselves from dependence on utility companies. With five acres and hard work, the author shows the reader how to live an independent lifestyle and be self-sufficient.A required read for those who still dream about living life as unfettered people.
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92 of 113 people found the following review helpful By Country Girl on July 6, 2005
Format: Paperback
I bought this book hoping I could find alot of information to start a small hobby farm on my 4 1/2 acres. The description of the book made it sound like it was very informative about raising animals, gardening, etc.

This book does cover all aspects. I wanted ideas on which animals are better to raise and such, particularly goats. I was very dissappointed on the section on farm animals. The writer wrote a bit about cows (probably because he raised them), he mentioned goats in about two sentences. All articles were so short and they were not helpful.

If you want to have a book just to read and not really use as a reference go ahead and purchase it. All the articles I wanted to know were all hard to find, had little information (really no information) and I felt that the writer just gave his own personal opinions and not facts.

For me I was dissappointed and now looking to find another reference guide to help me on my way to have a lovely hobby farm. I needed informtion on gardening, making maple syrup, canning/freezing, raising goats, raising beef cows, raising ducks and so forth. This book was not helpful at all. :( :( :(
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