Concrete Garden A review of Your Farm in the City: An Urban Dweller’s Guide to Growing Food and Raising Animals by Lisa Taylor

Credit: Leslie Seaton, FlickrCCIf you live in a concrete jungle but long for greener pastures, Your Farm in the City: An Urban Dweller’s Guide to Growing Food and Raising Animals (Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, $18.95) has a solution. The book, written by Lisa Taylor and the gardeners at the world-renowned Seattle Tilth Learning Garden, is a complete 21st century guide to urban gardening and farming. Thirty-plus years of experience growing food and keeping small livestock have been distilled into 100 illustrations and graphic-filled instructions that are easy enough to inspire any modern urbanite to develop a green thumb. Taylor recommends that newcomers to growing begin with a clear objective. She asks: “What do you want to accomplish on your city farm? What do you want to grow? Is this a start-up year, when you learn a little about growing plants and maybe eat a tomato or two? Or are you experienced and want to grow enough to feed the family?”

With extensive how-to guides on building healthy soil, watering, organic pest management and composting, the book remains grounded in the basics while still building enthusiasm for how to transform your patch of city ground into an oasis. It also includes detailed instructions on how to can your veggies, dry your fruit and freeze your herbs so that your harvest and grocery bill savings can be extended all year.