Gaia's Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture, 2nd Edition, Edition 2

Chelsea Green Publishing
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The first edition of Gaia’s Garden sparked the imagination of America’s home gardeners, introducing permaculture’s central message: Working with Nature, not against her, results in more beautiful, abundant, and forgiving gardens. This extensively revised and expanded second edition broadens the reach and depth of the permaculture approach for urban and suburban growers.

Many people mistakenly think that ecological gardening—which involves growing a wide range of edible and other useful plants—can take place only on a large, multiacre scale. As Hemenway demonstrates, it’s fun and easy to create a “backyard ecosystem” by assembling communities of plants that can work cooperatively and perform a variety of functions, including:

  • Building and maintaining soil fertility and structure
  • Catching and conserving water in the landscape
  • Providing habitat for beneficial insects, birds, and animals
  • Growing an edible “forest” that yields seasonal fruits, nuts, and other foods

This revised and updated edition also features a new chapter on urban permaculture, designed especially for people in cities and suburbs who have very limited growing space. Whatever size yard or garden you have to work with, you can apply basic permaculture principles to make it more diverse, more natural, more productive, and more beautiful. Best of all, once it’s established, an ecological garden will reduce or eliminate most of the backbreaking work that’s needed to maintain the typical lawn and garden.

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About the author

Toby Hemenway was the author of the first major North American book on permaculture, Gaia’s Garden: A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture, as well as The Permaculture City. After obtaining a degree in biology from Tufts University, Toby worked for many years as a researcher in genetics and immunology, first in academic laboratories at Harvard and the University of Washington in Seattle, and then at Immunex, a major medical biotech company. At about the time he was growing dissatisfied with the direction biotechnology was taking, he discovered permaculture, a design approach based on ecological principles that creates sustainable landscapes, homes, and workplaces. A career change followed, and Toby and his wife spent ten years creating a rural permaculture site in southern Oregon. He was associate editor of Permaculture Activist, a journal of ecological design and sustainable culture, from 1999 to 2004. He taught permaculture and consulted and lectured on ecological design throughout the country, and his writing appeared in magazines such as Whole Earth Review, Natural Home, and Kitchen Gardener. Toby passed away in 2016.

Visit his web site at

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Additional Information

Chelsea Green Publishing
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Published on
May 19, 2009
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Gardening / Organic
Gardening / Techniques
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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Table of Contents

Benefits of Your Own Kitchen Garden
Best Position/Placing of Your Garden
Basic Tools
Plants of choice
Shallots and Chives
Beans and peas
Basil and mint
Best Time for Planting
Preparing your Land
Planting Tips
Using Neem Cake
Succession and Companion Cropping
Compost and Soil
The Importance Of Mulch
Author Bio


As more and more of us are looking for healthier food alternatives, and easy food resources, which do not add to the burden of our limited budget, is it surprising that so many of us are interested in how to make a potager.

This is the French word for what is a kitchen garden. In Scotland, they call it a Kailyaird, or simply the yard where you are going to grow your family’s necessary requirements of fresh fruit and vegetables, depending on the space available. During the First World War this was called a Victory garden.

This is the place which is not going to be cluttered up with lots of sweet smelling blossoms. It is going to be reserved just for vegetables and herbs, which are ready to go right into your cooking pot. Also, the lawn area is definitely not going to be utilized in the making of a potager. Leave that particular area to the grass.

A kitchen garden – also known as a vegetable plot – has been used by mankind for centuries, in order to grow their own vegetables. That is because man would rather have easy access to his food, then go out hunting for it. And that is what made him add fruit and vegetables to his daily diet, instead of substance on just animal products like meat, fish, and game, which needed to be hunted in all weather, depending on the need and requirement of the tribe and family.

And that is why he began domesticating farm animals. But we, a large number of us who are town dwellers or city dwellers, have supposedly lost touch with our roots, no pun intended, and that is why we can not imagine ourselves grubbing in the family farms or plots, from dawn to dusk, in order to get enough of a harvest to feed our families.
Table of Contents 

Why the Need for Controlling Pests 
Factors Affecting Pest Control Measures 
Large Yields and Short-Term Success 
Pest Control Methods 
Destruction of Plant Hosts 
Resistant Varieties and Hybrids 
Seed Treatment for Disease Control 
Chemicals and Organic Chemicals 
Heat Treatment for Seeds 
Insects Control by Chemicals 
Getting Clean Disease-Free Seeds 
Soil Treatment 
Formaldehyde Treatment 
Methyl Bromide 
Crop Rotation 
Author Bio 


It is the top priority of every gardener to know all about pest control measures as well as disease control measures. This is essential to successful vegetable production, and harvesting. 

Both insects as well as diseases are getting to be more of a serious problem, with the passing of the days, because they are getting to be immune to pesticides. This happens to be a vicious circle. You spray powerful pesticides on them to kill just one generation of insects and pests. Within a couple of months, you have a more powerful generation mutating, this particular insect generation is going to be pesticide resistant. 

To counteract this particular problem, we are going to use even more powerful pesticides not knowing the harm those poisons and chemical toxins can do to our own system. But then we are working on a short-term solution. 
There is another reason why more and more different strains of insects are cropping up so easily on our land. That is because we have changed our agricultural practices. These may now favor the growth of the insect population on the land. 

This book is going to give you plenty of information on how you can control pests as well as diseases in your garden. There will be plenty of tips and precautions, as well as methods of how you can control the common insects and diseases found in your garden or in your vegetable patch right now. 

Permaculture is more than just the latest buzzword; it offers positive solutions for many of the environmental and social challenges confronting us. And nowhere are those remedies more needed and desired than in our cities. The Permaculture City provides a new way of thinking about urban living, with practical examples for creating abundant food, energy security, close-knit communities, local and meaningful livelihoods, and sustainable policies in our cities and towns. The same nature-based approach that works so beautifully for growing food—connecting the pieces of the landscape together in harmonious ways—applies perfectly to many of our other needs. Toby Hemenway, one of the leading practitioners and teachers of permaculture design, illuminates a new way forward through examples of edge-pushing innovations, along with a deeply holistic conceptual framework for our cities, towns, and suburbs.

The Permaculture City begins in the garden but takes what we have learned there and applies it to a much broader range of human experience; we’re not just gardening plants but people, neighborhoods, and even cultures. Hemenway lays out how permaculture design can help towndwellers solve the challenges of meeting our needs for food, water, shelter, energy, community, and livelihood in sustainable, resilient ways. Readers will find new information on designing the urban home garden and strategies for gardening in community, rethinking our water and energy systems, learning the difference between a “job” and a “livelihood,” and the importance of placemaking and an empowered community.

This important book documents the rise of a new sophistication, depth, and diversity in the approaches and thinking of permaculture designers and practitioners. Understanding nature can do more than improve how we grow, make, or consume things; it can also teach us how to cooperate, make decisions, and arrive at good solutions.
There is a fantastic array of vegetables you can grow in your garden, and not all of them are annuals. In Perennial Vegetables the adventurous gardener will find information, tips, and sound advice on less common edibles that will make any garden a perpetual, low-maintenance source of food.

Imagine growing vegetables that require just about the same amount of care as the flowers in your perennial beds and borders—no annual tilling and potting and planting. They thrive and produce abundant and nutritious crops throughout the season. It sounds too good to be true, but in Perennial Vegetables author and plant specialist Eric Toensmeier (Edible Forest Gardens) introduces gardeners to a world of little-known and wholly underappreciated plants. Ranging beyond the usual suspects (asparagus, rhubarb, and artichoke) to include such "minor" crops as ground cherry and ramps (both of which have found their way onto exclusive restaurant menus) and the much sought after, anti-oxidant-rich wolfberry (also known as goji berries), Toensmeier explains how to raise, tend, harvest, and cook with plants that yield great crops and satisfaction.

Perennial vegetables are perfect as part of an edible landscape plan or permaculture garden. Profiling more than 100 species, illustrated with dozens of color photographs and illustrations, and filled with valuable growing tips, recipes, and resources, Perennial Vegetables is a groundbreaking and ground-healing book that will open the eyes of gardeners everywhere to the exciting world of edible perennials.

Permanent agriculture - abundance by design

The urban landscape has swallowed vast swaths of prime farmland across North America. Imagine how much more self-reliant our communities would be if 30 million acres of lawns were made productive again. Permaculture is a practical way to apply ecological design principles to food, housing, and energy systems; making growing fruits, vegetables and livestock easier and more sustainable.

The Permaculture Handbook is a step-by-step, beautifully illustrated guide to creating resilient and prosperous households andneighborhoods, complemented by extensive case studies of three successful farmsteads and market gardens. This comprehensive manual casts garden farming as both an economic opportunity and a strategy for living well with less money. It shows how, by mimicking the intelligence of nature and applying appropriate technologies such as solar and environmental design, permaculture can:

Create an abundance of fresh, nourishing local produce Reduce dependence on expensive, polluting fossil fuels Drought-proof our cities and countryside Convert waste into wealth

Permaculture is about working with the earth and with each other to repair the damage of industrial overreach and to enrich the living world that sustains us. The Permaculture Handbook is the definitive, practical NorthAmerican guide to this revolutionary practice, and is a must-read for anyone concerned about creating food security, resilience and a legacy of abundance rather than depletion.

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