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The Urban Farm Handbook Giveaway

February 15th, 2012

When my friend Annette Cottrell from Sustainable Eats asked me to read through her new book Urban Farm Handbook: City Slicker Resources for Growing, Raising, Sourcing, Trading, and Preparing What You Eat I gladly accepted. There’s nothing I love more than giving my friends a hand, especially when it means that I get a free copy of the book to give away to one of you!

I expected this book to be like most of the other homesteading books that abound these days. It seems everyone wants to relearn some of the skills that have been lost throughout the last couple generations, so homesteading books are flooding the market. Thankfully, this book is different. Anette’s personal style brings the information to life, unlike many other books of this genre that I’ve read. She’s passionate about why she does what she does and it comes through. Her directions/explanations are in depth enough but still simple. You won’t be overwhelmed with information and feel like it’s unattainable for you to incorporate these changes into your current lifestyle.

The book covers everything from keeping chickens and grinding grain, to growing your own vegetables and making cheese. She makes these tasks seem achievable by anyone who sets their mind to it and takes away some of the mystique that surrounds them. If you’ve ever considered dabbling in keeping goats, chickens, making your own cheese, grinding grains, growing your own vegetables and all other kinds of self-sufficient things, this will be a fabulous reference guide to keep on your bookshelf.

Annette’s book is a great resource for the newbie, especially those of you that live in the Pacific Northwest. She lives in that area provides many resources that she knows about first hand. Reading about all the wonderful groups she’s a part of made me wish I had something similar here in NE Ohio.

If you’d like to win a copy of this book for your library, comment below. I’ll choose a winner next week.

What is one area of homesteading that you’d like to learn a bit more about and possibly incorporate into your life this year?

We have a winner – Congrats to Andres from Stell Homestead.

Anette is having a year long Urban Farm Handbook Challenge on her blog if you’re interested in joining. Each month a different area is featured, it’s the perfect way to work on incorporating changes into your life slowly without feeling overwhelmed.

In case you missed it, the winner for the Victory Garden Poster winner is Chicago Mike.

129 Comments to “The Urban Farm Handbook Giveaway”
  1. Liz J on February 15, 2012 at 7:01 am

    I’m not familiar with that book ~ it looks wonderful! I would like to learn more about chickens and raising them, and need to connect with someone in the area that does that. I hear “fresh” eggs are incomparable.

    Reply to Liz J's comment

  2. Mark S on February 15, 2012 at 7:23 am

    Raising chickens! I’ve got 4 pullets coming in April!

    Reply to Mark S's comment

  3. Virginia on February 15, 2012 at 7:32 am

    I would love to learn more about raising chickens and making cheese. I am so excited about this book!
    Virginia´s last post ..Mini Hot Fudge Cakes

    Reply to Virginia's comment

  4. Beegirl on February 15, 2012 at 7:48 am

    Thanks for such a great giveaway! Always looking for new ideas for the garden. I need to figure out how to tackle the strawberries this year. Fruit trees too. Need to learn about bee-safe treatments for the orchard. Pruning too..!!
    Beegirl´s last post ..Popularity

    Reply to Beegirl's comment

  5. Kathi Cook on February 15, 2012 at 7:51 am

    Cheesemaking and raising chickens. The book looks great. These “how-to” gardening, self-sufficiency books are my new favorite genre (that and cook books).

    Reply to Kathi Cook's comment

  6. nuri on February 15, 2012 at 8:03 am

    I’m hoping for figuring out how to do all this in a small space!

    Reply to nuri's comment

  7. B ryan N. on February 15, 2012 at 8:18 am

    I dug up 2 more garden areas this past fall and would like to grow strawberries and raspberries.Thanks for another opportunity to possibly expand the library.

    Reply to B ryan N.'s comment

  8. Hailey in MT on February 15, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Looks like a great book! I am always on the hunt for geographically specific gardening tips for the NW. Thanks!

    Reply to Hailey in MT's comment

  9. Nicole on February 15, 2012 at 8:39 am

    I would like to learn more about dairy and making cheeses at home. And I can always use more info on gardening since this will be the first year we have a full garden.

    Reply to Nicole's comment

  10. Miranda on February 15, 2012 at 8:40 am

    Cheesemaking is on my list of things to learn. It’s so intimidating to me for some reason.

    Reply to Miranda's comment

  11. Heather on February 15, 2012 at 8:45 am

    I want to learn how to make cheese. I’m also hoping to over my fear of pressure canning. This book sounds fantastic.
    Heather´s last post ..Snowy weekend projects

    Reply to Heather's comment

  12. Heather on February 15, 2012 at 8:46 am

    All of the above! Raising chickens and goats especially along with how grinding grains and making cheese works would be very interesting to me as a beginner. This looks like it would be a great book!

    Reply to Heather's comment

  13. Fawn on February 15, 2012 at 8:46 am

    Cheesemaking and possibly goats!

    I already grow veggies and raise chickens but I would love tips on how to improve in those areas too!

    Reply to Fawn's comment

  14. S on February 15, 2012 at 8:47 am

    I agree that Annete’s community looks appealing, we don’t have as much of that here either–or maybe it’s a case of the grass is greener in the PNW! Anyway, this year I’m mostly looking at refinement: simplifying what I do and tweaking things such as support structures etc. But also have considered some bartering this season, and that part of the book (and the pressure canning recipes) looks really interesting.
    S´s last post ..hoopdate, February 2012

    Reply to S's comment

  15. Cheryl on February 15, 2012 at 8:52 am

    I’d like to read more about raising chickens. And as a Pacific NW transplant to NE Ohio I’d love to read about home! :)
    Cheryl´s last post ..Homemaking Helps, Pregnancy, Couponing & Some Odds and Ends

    Reply to Cheryl's comment

  16. Kate @ Snowflake Kitchen on February 15, 2012 at 8:56 am

    I need to get more into fermenting. And I’d like to start participating in a community kitchen!
    Kate @ Snowflake Kitchen´s last post ..Lessons in produzione la pasta fresca

    Reply to Kate @ Snowflake Kitchen's comment

  17. Krista on February 15, 2012 at 8:57 am

    I think that this book would be just my style! Can’t wait to read it.

    Reply to Krista's comment

  18. Martha on February 15, 2012 at 8:58 am

    I’m really looking into chickens and bee keeping. I live in a village and have a small yard with a small lot behind off the next street. I’m constantly looking for new ways to use every bit of land. This is my first year of trying to grow a real stock of food in our small yard.

    Reply to Martha's comment

  19. Molly on February 15, 2012 at 9:02 am

    I’d love to learn more about grinding my own grains — I get so frustrated with being able to locally source everything but grains and flours!

    Reply to Molly's comment

  20. Sonya on February 15, 2012 at 9:04 am

    I am interested in grinding my own grains and baking bread. I also would love to make cheese other than cottage cheese. Just not comfortable with the process yet.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win and the info that you share daily!

    Reply to Sonya's comment

  21. Melissa on February 15, 2012 at 9:23 am

    I’d like to learn more about making my own cheese!
    Melissa´s last post ..Creating Great Containers

    Reply to Melissa's comment

  22. Allison on February 15, 2012 at 9:36 am

    Well, since we are getting our first set of chicks this Spring, I probably need to learn most about them!
    Allison´s last post ..Easy [Real Food] Weeknight Meal: Pasta Alfredo

    Reply to Allison's comment

  23. Yart on February 15, 2012 at 9:37 am

    I want to learn more about bees this year.
    Yart´s last post ..The Story of Us

    Reply to Yart's comment

  24. Songbirdtiff on February 15, 2012 at 9:42 am

    Depending on where we move, I really want to add chickens. There are so many reasons to have them, but I just don’t know how to care for them. Thanks for offering the giveaway!
    Songbirdtiff´s last post ..Whoops!

    Reply to Songbirdtiff's comment

  25. Stacey R. on February 15, 2012 at 9:51 am

    We have always maintained a garden in our yard, but now we in are in the process of buying 5 acres and I see a lot of canning, chickens, candle-making and other homemade products in our future.

    Thanks for the opportunity to win the book!

    Reply to Stacey R.'s comment

  26. Kelly on February 15, 2012 at 9:52 am

    i’d really like to learn more about cheese making. It looks… complicated, but I want to try, still.
    Kelly´s last post ..House

    Reply to Kelly's comment

  27. Barbara on February 15, 2012 at 10:08 am

    I want/need to learn more about preserving my harvest – be that meat from our animals, herbs from the pots, or produce from the garden. Get me over my fear of canning!! :) I hope to win your friend’s book because a new viewpoint is always very welcome in re-learning the older ways.
    Barbara´s last post ..it’s all about the critters

    Reply to Barbara's comment

  28. Diana on February 15, 2012 at 10:11 am

    We are new to gardening and built 4 raised garden beds last year, I would love to learn more about growing vegetables and herbs!

    Reply to Diana's comment

  29. andrea on February 15, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Annette is fabulous and I’d love to have a copy of this book! This year we’re taking our next step by adding beekeeping to our repertoire. Thanks for the giveaway!

    Reply to andrea's comment

  30. Rip Van Winkle on February 15, 2012 at 10:16 am

    Since we’re forced to live in Louisiana next year, and I only just barely know how to garden in the climes of Central NY state and of MN, I would love to know how I can encourage tomatoes to actually survive the heat down here. I need tomato sauce! I learned last year that these past two summers have been literally too hot for the tomatoes to fruit! *sigh*

    Thanks for the give away opportunity. I have some friends who are harvesting the most wonderful carrots (right now) from their backyard which is downtown! The carrots are dee-licious, the friends: inspiring.

    Reply to Rip Van Winkle's comment

  31. Annette on February 15, 2012 at 10:31 am

    This year I plan to try my hand at raising some grains – enough for us to make bread and feed to the chickens. And we always struggle with controlling squash bugs… Any help and/or tips in that department are ALWAYS needed. =)
    Annette´s last post ..Brrrr… The what is frozen?

    Reply to Annette's comment

  32. Kat on February 15, 2012 at 10:40 am

    I have some big goals of keeping chickens or maybe a goat, however, I should probably start with the little things – keeping a bigger garden and learning to grow and eat with the seasons!

    Reply to Kat's comment

  33. Lori on February 15, 2012 at 10:43 am

    I’d love to learn more about cheesemaking. Good artisian cheese is one of my favorite things in the whole world and being able to make my own would be a great accomplishment. Learning to raise chickens would be nice, but my husband would never allow it – he’s afraid of them! LOL. Looks like I’m going to have to find another source for really fresh eggs.

    Reply to Lori's comment

  34. Melanie J. on February 15, 2012 at 10:44 am

    Container gardening and not having whatever I plant get eaten by the local squirrels and feral ducks (I’m stuck in an apartment another year)…gonna require some kind of mini-greenhouse. Thanks for the opportunity!
    Melanie J.´s last post ..The random ramblings of a shingles-addled web editor

    Reply to Melanie J.'s comment

  35. Tamar on February 15, 2012 at 10:59 am

    Making cheese from sheep milk!

    Reply to Tamar's comment

  36. K.B. on February 15, 2012 at 11:03 am

    Cheesemaking! I’m planning on making a lasagna soon, with home-made sausage, sauce, noodles – and maybe cheese!
    K.B.´s last post ..Wordless Wednesdays – February 15, 2012

    Reply to K.B.'s comment

  37. Josie on February 15, 2012 at 11:12 am

    This year we bought our first home after traveling all of our adult life with Air Force. I am (Finally) starting my first garden. I have little seedlings all over the place. I am having a great time learning about compainion planting and intensive practices since my yard is just a typical .20 acre. I feel your pain with the Northwest Suzy, my brother in law lives in Portland, I do love to visit but it is just too wet for me most of the time. They do however have amazing things going on with homesteading and food there. I curious to learn more about what varieties of vegetables and fruits I am going to be able to have success with in our garden.

    Reply to Josie's comment

  38. DebbieB on February 15, 2012 at 11:12 am

    I would LOVE to win a copy of this book. I’m a definite “city slicker”, but our dream to move to Montana includes having a potager garden and a few chickens.
    DebbieB´s last post ..Handwoven: Emerald Forest

    Reply to DebbieB's comment

  39. Traci on February 15, 2012 at 11:14 am

    I am actually reading this book right now and enjoying it. I agree it’s a very good, clear read. I was inspired by her section on grinding grains. I have been trying to make all of our own bread, crackers etc,, and I also follow the Nourishing Traditions method of soaking grains and nuts. But I still buy my flour, so the next step for me is to invest in a grain mill and start grinding away.

    The whole family loved her power pancake recipe.

    Since I was raised a city girl and have no knowledge passed down to me I am teaching myself ( some serious trial and error) “homesteading” skills. My interest was sparked 20 years ago when we bought our first small home outside the city that came with an established herb garden. Luckily, there was a biodynamic herb farm nearby offering courses and we learned about biodynamic gardening practices, and we not only kept the garden alive but helped it thrive. From there I began a 20 year passion with herbs and herbal medicine. I try to grow and make as much of our own herbal preparations as possible.

    So, this year I am on to learning about sourdough bread, grinding my own grains, and we just got our first bee hive so we will be exploring that as well. I will most likely follow the advice in this book regarding choosing the right mill.

    Anyway, I look forward to finishing the book and know that one of your lucky readers will be very happy!

    Reply to Traci's comment

  40. Kristin on February 15, 2012 at 11:17 am

    I would love a copy of this book. I would really like to learn to make cheese.

    Reply to Kristin's comment

  41. Sofie Dittmann on February 15, 2012 at 11:33 am

    Setting up a backyard farm is a challenge, and we have only just started. I’ve never kept rabbits before, and now we’re becoming fast friends. Well, sorta – I’m sure they find me intimidating even when my hands smell like carrots. :)
    Sofie Dittmann´s last post ..French Country Bread

    Reply to Sofie Dittmann's comment

  42. holly on February 15, 2012 at 11:34 am

    This book looks awesome! I would like to learn more about fermenting and master sourdough bread!

    Reply to holly's comment

  43. MAYBELLINE on February 15, 2012 at 11:56 am

    Food storage is something I would like to know more about. I can and freeze; but would like to know more.

    Thanks for the linkt to her blog.
    MAYBELLINE´s last post ..Cupid MacGregor

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

  44. MAYBELLINE on February 15, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Food storage is something I would like to know more about. I can and freeze; but would like to know more.

    Thanks for the link to her blog.
    MAYBELLINE´s last post ..Cupid MacGregor

    Reply to MAYBELLINE's comment

  45. Amber J on February 15, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    I am interested in keeping chickens, we are not allowed where we currently live but plan to move soon. I love fresh eggs and we eat loads of them ;)

    Reply to Amber J's comment

  46. Jennie-Team Dean on February 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

    We are still learning and need to learn more about the year round garden. We managed to harvest from our garden all year long but I know we should be able to harvest more.
    Jennie-Team Dean´s last post ..A good month…

    Reply to Jennie-Team Dean's comment

  47. Christine on February 15, 2012 at 12:21 pm

    My tries at cheese making have been complete failures. That is something I’d really like to get better at. But I love reading about chickens any time! Thanks for giving me yet another book to add to my to-read goodreads list!

    Reply to Christine's comment

  48. Debbie Jamieson on February 15, 2012 at 12:22 pm

    I wish we could have chickens…it’s the one thing I’d really love to do at this point by our city by-law forbids it. We are fighting them on it…so we’ll see. I’d also like to do more winter gardening. Right now we do very little…herbs and that’s about it. Next year I want to incorporate greens as well. Thanks for this opportunity, Susy.
    Debbie Jamieson´s last post ..embracing learning

    Reply to Debbie Jamieson's comment

  49. caroline on February 15, 2012 at 12:27 pm

    I’d love to learn more about vegetables and chickens!

    Reply to caroline's comment

  50. Meighan on February 15, 2012 at 12:28 pm

    This sounds like a wonderful book! I have a couple of things on my homesteading “learn list” for this year – first off is plan for a true 12-month harvest from my garden, instead of just kale in the winter I’d love to have some other greens going – this will mean coldframes and rowcovers I think. I would also like to do more cheesemaking.

    Reply to Meighan's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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