“The Backyard Homestead Guide To Raising Farm Animals” authored by Gail Damerow and “The Backyard Homestead: Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre!” authored by Carleen Madigan
Though two different books written by two different authors, both of these books are a part of the same Backyard Homestead series by Storey Publishing. For that reason, I’ve chosen to combine them in a single review.
It should be noted, however, that I purchased both books several years apart from one another; Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre was my first purchase years ago while I was still living in Tulsa. As such, the review includes information from that time period when I was using it and maintained a food garden during my first year there. Guide To Raising Farm Animals, however, was a recent special order from my local Book Store- and I bought it specifically to augment Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre when my Husband and I decided to move forward with our Homesteading plans.
Onwards with the review!
Produce All the Food You Need on Just a Quarter Acre has a wealth of information. It’s not really a specialized book like the other one in the series, though. Instead it includes mostly fundamentals- including minor information on various livestock crops, tips for structuring your land to make the most of it, and more. Outside of Homesteading, it also has applications for normal gardening, and I’ve used it extensively for my non-homestead when growing food crops in town.
Guide To Raising Farm Animals on the other hand, unlike its sister book, focuses exclusively on livestock and goes into much more depth than the others; it’s a great starting place if you have no idea what you’re doing with livestock- whether it’s Goats, Waterfowl, or just your average chicken.
What really makes both books for me, though, is the wide use of pictures to help illustrate what the authors are talking about; both books are packed with so much information for their size- and beautifully illustrated in a number of ways that make them both visually stunning and incredibly helpful in ways that non-illustrated books simply aren’t.