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The New Self-Sufficient Gardener Paperback – April 21, 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 66 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

I have a small, jealously guarded library of best-ever food gardening books, most of them now out of print, and all authored by gardeners who spent at least as much time growing food as writing. So when one of these classics comes back into print, I m excited. The New Self-Sufficient Gardener by John Seymour is the latest case in point... A fan of deep-bed gardening, his book shows how to get the most out of small amounts of land. All these principles work as well on a hundred-square-foot city garden as on a farm... The result is a book that's loaded with large, engaging color illustrations of fruits, vegetables, composting, whole gardens, greenhouses, chicken coops, trellising, beekeeping, pruning, grafting, and just about every other food-growing activity you can think of. --Sunset Magazine

About the Author

John Seymour is a psychologist and NLP trainer, founder of John Seymour Associates, the longest established NLP training centre in Britain. He is also an Associate Tutor at the Further Education Staff College.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: DK (April 21, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0756628989
  • ISBN-13: 978-0756628987
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.7 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #63,223 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

John Seymour is the acknowledged founding father of the self-sufficiency movement. Author of more than 40 books, he draws students from around the world to learn self-sufficiency first hand at his farm in County Wexford.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
After 30 years of having gardens in small yards, crowded yards, shaded yards and "rented" yards we are finally in the position to tend 25 acres of land.

It's ironic that the practices I've learned from the sustainable ag/permaculture/organic gardeners to make the most of my little gardens have now equipped me to grow more than enough food for our family in several small raised beds! This allows us to leave the bulk of our land wild and free for the wildlife that already inhabits it (which also leaves us a lot more time to enjoy the land and wildlife)!

That said, I've been working my way through my "oldies but goodies" garden book collection and picking up revised editions where possible and reading new authors as well to see how I can make the most of every bit of garden space I have in an effort to leave the remainder of my land naturalized.

This edition now ranks as my favorite all-around comprehensive garden book (and that is a high honor because I have some absolutely brilliant and useful books on my shelf). I cannot believe how much valuable information, beautiful illustrations and new-to-me hints, techniques and ideas I've picked up from this book.

On first glance, it looked like it was going to be another book that presented basic information on overall gardening with a little more detail when you get to the nuts and bolts of individual types of plants. Not so! He gives so many detailed instructions, illustrations and ideas for so many plants and techniques that I'm actually a little overwhelmed.

What I love most is that these are tips and techniques that anyone--rich or poor, strong or weak, with great tools or a $1 tree spade, some seeds and a space in the sun--can use to grow a beautiful, nutritious crop of food AND create a healthier, more productive environment as well.

I cannot imagine any gardener not enjoying this book and finding something useful to apply in their own garden.
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Format: Paperback
I am an avid reader, and avid gardener. I have bought thousands of dollars of books and this is the first book I have ever felt I NEEDED to write a review for.

This is a wonderful book for the experienced gardener and new alike. The suggestions are practical, inexpensive, and can be applied in any garden. He covers soil, pests, different crops, spacing, garden layout, composting, and more. I checked this book out of the library, but am here today to buy it. It may be the only gardening book you will need (although if you are like me you will add others!).

I love his down to earth way of writing, and practical, useful information.
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the fact that oil prices and food prices have been soaring exorbitantly should by itself be enough to make the everyday person want to consider self-sufficiency. I've been contemplating it recently because I've always loved to play in the dirt. Previously, I have been a 'tomato plants and maybe some herbs' kind of gardener. This year my garden crops have doubled and I have become more and more interested in different types of crops and self-sufficiency ideas. This books is chock-full of ideas and suggestions for just that outlook. Some self-sufficiency guides are nothing more than expensive wishful thinking. Not everyone can afford to put up a $12,500 wind turbine in their backyard. We can't all install geo-thermal heating systems in our houses. Some of us live in the CITY and cannot get away from city zoning laws. John Seymour's book is extremely practical in explanation and suggestion about simply learning how to garden for your own food needs. I learned some brand new techniques for growing potatoes and other root vegetables, and also learned how to get my own fertilizer without having to build compost bins which will probably offend the neighbors. I'm so pleased with this book and so glad that I spent the cash to get it.
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I bought this new edition because, like the other reviewer, I simply wore out my old copy reading it over and over again. I think all of his books are wonderful, but this one is my favorite.

The information is presented in a clear simple manner, that will benefit anyone from the first time gardener to a seasoned expert. The illustrations are superb. It is so much more than a run of the mill gardening book.

If you are looking for a single book to help you grow more and better food for your table, you can't go wrong with this one.
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It doesn't matter whether you have just started gardening or if you have been gardening for 30 years, this book will be the best manual that you ever own. John Seymour has several books about living a self-sufficient lifestyle and they are all a must have for anyone. Well written, well illustrated and with a dash humor these books are an excellent read and exponentially helpful.
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Format: Paperback
There are a whole slew of instructional books on gardening and preserving here on Amazon. Truthfully I personally never tire of occasionally buying new ones on the subject. Sitting down and reading a good garden book is sorta like seeing a new documentary, or reading a new book on some period in history you have always known and found fascinating. That is, even though they all pretty much tend to relate the same facts and events of a colorful era, it never seems to fail that you still manage to pick up something you never knew before. Or at least learn more about what you figured you always had a pretty good handle on. The Self Sufficient Gardener is one of my newest entries, and already becoming both one of my most interesting, and totally enjoyable as well. All these kind of gardening books are pretty much all about the writers style in relating all the info and instruction in both a fun and educational way. That is to say, all the the facts you should know, the techniques they have picked up over the years as to making the whole experience enjoyable and prosperous, and, tossing in a healthy dose of old wives tales and folklore that either has no basis in fact at all, or has withstood the test of time as being right on good advice. John Seymour's home spun style and laid back manner of relating advice, technique, and instruction will remind many of a kindly old teacher that made a class we thought would be a real sleeper something that we ended up looking forward to just because they did such a good job of teaching it all. Gardening and preserving is something that many of us have a strong hankerin' to learn more of and get our hands dirty with right from the get go.Read more ›
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