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How to Grow More Vegetables: And Fruits, Nuts, Berries, Grains and Other Crops Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine [Paperback]

by John Jeavons
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)


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Book Description

March 1, 2004 1580082335 978-1580082334 6th
A classic in the field of sustainable gardening, HOW TO GROW MORE VEGETABLES shows how to produce a beautiful organic garden with minimal watering and care, whether it's just a few tomatoes in a tiny backyard or enough food to feed a family of four on less than half an acre. Updated with the latest biointensive tips and techniques, this is an essential reference for gardeners of all skill levels seeking to grow some or all of their own food.


Editorial Reviews

About the Author

JOHN JEAVONS is a cofounder of the group Ecology Action and the father of the modern biointensive gardening movement. He lives in Willits, California, where he has been growing more vegetables for decades.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 6th edition (March 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580082335
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580082334
  • Product Dimensions: 10.6 x 8.5 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #519,124 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

JOHN JEAVONS is a cofounder of the group Ecology Action and the father of the modern biointensive gardening movement. He lives in Willits, California, where he has been growing more vegetables for decades.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
366 of 368 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tired of weeding, fertilizing, watering constantly? December 14, 2004
Format:Paperback
I spent a few hours reading this book and was rewarded with 7-foot high tomato plants with big flavorful fruit, beautiful herbs (a couple of sprigs of fresh rosemary were just the thing for a New Year's coq au vin I still remember fondly), beans, peas, lettuce, flowers and more, all from four 4x20 garden beds. All (organic) fertilizing is done before planting, and I only have to weed *twice* a year. If this sounds like the kind of gardening you'd like to do, then this book will show you how. (The automatic watering I came up with myself - buried soaker hoses made from recycled tires a couple of inches deep in the beds and hooked them up to a hose on a timer.)

Contrary to a couple of comments, I didn't find the book at all difficult to understand - quite the opposite. Here, try one great idea on for size:

The roots and leaves of each plant fill a circle. (The book tells you the size of that circle for just about every common garden plant, plus more than a few uncommon ones.) Space your plants so that all the circles are just touching. (You can picture what this looks like by using coins.) That way, each plant has enough room to grow and thrive, while at the same time all their roots and leaves form a "living mulch" that crowds out weeds.

This really works - as I said, I only have to weed twice a season. And how difficult was that to understand? This book is full of great, clearly explained ideas like that, with all the information you need to put them into practice yourself. And someone gave it two stars because it uses *line drawings*? Please.

The reviewer who called it a gardening Bible had it exactly right. If you're thinking of buying a gardening book, do yourself and your garden a great big favor - make it this one.
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244 of 249 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Concise, Thorough Guide to Gardning for sustinance November 5, 2002
Format:Paperback
This book was loaned to me by a friend who has used it's techniques to produce high-yield growth in his gardens. I have always wanted to have a self sufficent garden, and land for this, but have always thought I would need a number of acres to do this. I am now planning on purchasing a home with one acre and am confident that with the techniques detailed in this book, I will be able to produce good crops for home-grown organic vegetables.
There is so much information here on composting, conpanion planting, how plants and thier root systems grow and interact, how to make the garden beds, why beds and clumps are better and yield more produce than planting in rows, soil composition, garden implements and more.
There are diagrams for everything you need to know presented in such a way that it's easy to understand and implement. There is so much information here, it would be usefull to a complete beginer like me or an experienced gardner.
Happy Planting!
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86 of 92 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
When I first bought this book in 1988 I read it cover to cover on a cool winter evening, dreaming into the night of all the wonderful seeds I could begin to sprout....and plants that I could grow and eat. I now have the most recent edition as well, to loan out to "gardening newbies", but every year I pull out the older copy as a reference when planning & planting my spring garden. (Hence the dirty fingerprints throughout!)
The book is an excellent easy-to-read source and guide for the importance of good soil preparation as well as companion planting and planting by phases of the moon.
(By the way, the reviewer that called this book "New Age Crap" was wrong wrong wrong.)
The author takes old concepts (such as planting by lunar cycles) and encourages one to try it. I did, and am very pleased year after year with the results. I think the reviewer (HL - a self-proclaimed "technical specifications reader") who did not care for the style of the book should stick to reading and let us gardeners stick to the dirt!
May all the newbie vegetable gardeners out there be as inspired as I continue to be by this book!
Incidentally, for San Francisco Bay Area readers, the author occasionally teaches in person at Common Ground in Palo Alto (559 College Avenue, Palo Alto, CA 94306 650-493-6072) A wonderful down-to-earth store where one can buy seeds "by the teaspoon" from shelves of seed jars and take informative classes. [...]
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Guide to Gardening November 2, 2004
Format:Paperback
I own and have read many books on gardening. John Jeavons has put together THE TEXTBOOK for beginners and advanced gardeners alike. I like the simple illustrations of such basic activities as double digging the garden, composting, and possible layouts of the garden. At the same time, I find the tables of detailed info on each plant an excellent resource for planning my own garden. I guess that some gardeners will feel intimidated by all the info, I sure did at first, and one other reviewer seemed to as well. But I can't imagine passing up this book for that reason!
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource for food production November 11, 2003
Format:Paperback
This book is an amazing, overwhelming wealth of information.
I'm not sure I totally agree with all the advice - he's somewhat
anti-manure and recommends transplanting everything twice. It
mentions things like phase of the moon planting, but it's not
dogmatic about these more offbeat ideas. The real value is
the charts for the growing needs, spacing, etc. for every plant
and grain and tree, with suggested layouts and rotations; and
how it targets sustainably suppling real food for people, in
quantities needed to live on, rather than just growing the odd
vegetable for fun.
They are, I believe, in Northern CA so more appropriate for me
in Oregon than many of the Rodale and other east-coast authors.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book
great book. fantastic, detailed step by step for growing food for yourself or family. it does however make references to several of its other publications for further info. Read more
Published 5 months ago by R. Magee
3.0 out of 5 stars Remember to plant 60% grain crops
An interesting book and a knowledgeable author, but I have to give it 3 stars. While the book is titled "How to Grow More Vegetables" and sounds general-purpose, a better title... Read more
Published 23 months ago by Jeff Rutsch
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have in your library
This book is part text book, part how-to. You need this in your library if you are a serious gardener. Read more
Published on February 19, 2012 by R. Pickett
5.0 out of 5 stars The first and only gardening book i own...
This is a great book. it got me started gardening and i generally have these principals in mind when im gardening. An excellent example to follow.
Published on March 11, 2011 by M. Tomo
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST BOOK EVER.
This is for the layman. I am not exactly an amateur, but certainly not a professional! This has completely changed the way I go about growing my food, with seasonal and yearly... Read more
Published on September 25, 2009 by Anne Ruthstrom
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a book for "casual backyard gardening"
The people who are disappointed with this book are the ones who bought it without understanding what it was. Read more
Published on January 26, 2008 by Bess
2.0 out of 5 stars California Vegetarians
I have gardened organically for over 30 years, and always love to read good gardening books hoping to learn more. Read more
Published on March 5, 2007 by L. Williams
1.0 out of 5 stars Ridiculous waste of money
It's a textbook for a self-sustaining farm, not for a backyard gardener. I don't care how many seeds I will get from my plants, or how many pounds my yield will be, compared to... Read more
Published on January 11, 2007 by smith7977
5.0 out of 5 stars The Bible of Gardening for our Household
I have read a few of the reviews below, and feel compelled to add my experience.

I am not a professional farmer, nor am I even a master gardener. Read more
Published on August 21, 2006 by Natalie Finegar
1.0 out of 5 stars self promoting and little information
I am surprised by the good reviews here.

First the obvious: the book is printed on thick grey paper in very large print that makes you think someone wanted this to look... Read more
Published on June 4, 2006 by garten
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