View Full Version : Most Helpful Books?
20-11-2009, 06:11 AM
Hi Alice here,I am interested in sometime in the next two years our family moving to a bigger bit of land (acreage?) to live a beter life. I have been reading some of Bill Mollisons books (slowly its been awhile since Ive had to comprehend a book stronger than Thomas the Tank),Linda Woodrow was interesting and much easier to digest, Ive read a few realy old homesteaders books that were facinating but sadly belonged to the library and a Micheal Richardson book on Australian Self Sufficiency that was realy informative over a broad range of subjects. BUT a big handfull of books that were total crap. What I want to know is what are all of your "best" books, the ones you turn too again and again. Also what books do you know are good from a beginners standpoint. One more, who does the best lunar/planting Australian Almanac/guide? Thank you I would appreciate any input as trips into bookshops with my three little monsters are perilous to say the least and any finger pointing in the right direction is a good thing.
20-11-2009, 08:46 AM
Hi Alice, welcome to the forum.
So many people seem to come here and ask this question, so if you do a search you will find many suggestions.
Please note that the following is not directed to you specifically...
Whenever someone asks about books, I often stop to reflect on it and what 'permaculture' books have meant to me. I love reading about permaculture, don't get me wrong, but in a way I see these books as a kind of virtual tourism - you can visit the place through a book, but there is really no substitute for visiting or living there for real. It seems to me that there comes a time to stop reading about a place and go visit it, to see if you like it, especially if you are planning to move there site unseen. Otherwise I think you get caught in a perpetual fantasy that can drive you mad. In some ways it's like a picture postcard of a beautiful beach - the photo doesn't show the reality of the flies, the heat of the sand or the smell of the factory three blocks down - it is the fantasy or ideal of a beach that it is selling. Without being too negative, I think it is important to remember that books are just books and there is no substitute for "doing it". Try to be as permaculturally adept as you can where you are, and you may find that that is enough for you, you may find that you are naturally born to it and thus move towards your acreage with great enthusiasm, and experience. Living as a permaculturist where ever you are is the key for me.
Having said all that, my favorite book is David Holmgren's, Permaculture: Principles and Pathways beyond Sustainability. I like it because it is more about the broader concepts of permaculture without being too prescriptive, so that it can be applied to where ever you are and whatever your circumstances. It really helped me get clear on what it was I was trying to be and do. It helped me to understand that Permaculture is really a frame of mind, a way of being, rather than the specific things you are doing. Because I feel that if you grasp the concepts of permaculture and allow them to become the basis of your existence then the actual doing will take care of itself - you just apply the principles to your daily actions then the things you do will necessarily be infused with it. I wonder sometimes if people truly understand why they get involved in Permaculture in the first place, what it really means to them. Is permacultre a way of being for you or a way of doing?
Another book I would recommend which is in most respects totally unrelated to Permaculture is Eckhart Tolle's, A New Earth: Create a Better Life
Welcome aboard, I trust you will find everything you need to know here.
20-11-2009, 06:27 PM
Ahh yes I see what you mean Grahame, I don't know if I think along the same lines. I was a qualified Chef from when I left school until I had kidsabout 15 years and have collected quite a collection of cook books. Whilst I agree that you can't substitute what you read in books for real experience, there will always be for me the ones that you can go back to time and time again. Snippets of information that have escaped you mind when you need them or maybe just a little inspiration.Or even just the love of the book. For the record the hands down cook book winnner for me is the Stephanie Alexander Cooks Companion. Alot of books are pure fashion of the time or just totally lacking in any useful substance. I was thinking that most subjects would have the handful of realy great books to each bucketload of drivel. I love books and I am interested to see of any stand out ones.I am not realy loking for a quick fix but I am curious of peoples favorites. Thank you for your response. I hope other folks tell me their oft thumbed ones too.
22-11-2009, 10:19 AM
all the above and also look out for a book by American Robert Kourik "designing, constructing and maintaining your edible landscape - naturally" very good.
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