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in the Southwest Mountains
Preface by Dr. Gary Paul Nabhan
Author of Coming Home to Eat:
The Pleasures and Politics of Local Foods
Some gardening books simply give readers a formula for combining crops and planting times for a particular locale, but Lisa Rayner's new edition of this little masterpiece provides you with principles for living and eating in harmony with northern Arizona's natural habitats. While this book is rich in detail about the ways weather, soils, plants and gardeners interact in the Flagstaff environment, it offers us more than that. It is a primer on how to change our food production and consumption strategies to sustain the natural and cultural heritage of our region. The gardener, in this model, becomes co-designer with nature, and therefore a naturalist observing the ecological interactions between crop and insect, mulch and soil temperature. Instead of merely remaking the environment to fit what vegetables we desire to grow, Lisa offers strategies for better selecting what we grow and when we grow it to fit the prevailing conditions of our home ground. As a writer, she is a match-maker; as a gardener, you will be one too.
Ultimately, this book will of greatest value to you if it inspires you to put it down, go outside, and expand your garden and orchard, extending their seasons and productivity beyond what you could have imagined before reading Lisa's advice. Abbie Hoffman may have wanted you to "Steal This Book," but my advice to you is "Plant This Book." Plant its principles in your mind so deeply, that you no longer need its pages; mulch them and make them part of your body and spirit's connection with this land.