Have you ever desired, deep within your soul, to make a comfortable full-time living from a farming enterprise? Too often people dare not even vocalize this. You Can Farm is probably the Joel Salatin book that kicked off more future farmers than any other, and I have to include us in that count. We recently finished reading Joel Salatin’s You Can Farm: The Entrepreneur’s Guide to Start and $ucceed in a Farming Enterprise. It’s a good.

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Mar 27, Sarah rated it it was ok. As a supplement to his advice about farming which seems basically sound, at least to an amateur like meSalatin insists on throwing his personal politics into the mix.

Your Successful Farm Business. Coupled with unequivocal endorsements of almost every spurious, new age, jooel crap you can think of, this book became quite tiresome.

Anyone willing to dance with such a dream should be able to assess its assets and liabilities; its fantasies and realities. The key, as Salatin mentions, is to not require significant income from the farm for years. Rather than being a purely rah-rah book, Salatin would rather scare off potential farmers than have them get themselves into something they don’t really want and consequently will fail at anyway. Salatin takes Christian stewardship of the earth seriously, and it is a joy to read what this has led him to do.

He makes use of a few primary functions for each type of livestock that complement the others, which allows him to ‘stack’ enterprises, or produce multiple products from a piece of land in any given year: I think I’ll stick with backyard-everything.


It’s like thinking the unthinkable. I would highly recommend this to any serious prospective farmer, with the advice of not letting the rubbish thrown in distract you from the author’s main fafm and points. But for farm entrepreneurs, the opportunities for a farm family business have never been greater.

May 25, Sharon rated it really liked it. For instance, a comfortable house – not a money-saving venture. They have a short shelf life and a fair market value.

Oct 28, Scott rated it it was amazing Shelves: Don’t think of it as jole up for land” so much as investing your money in a secure vehicle that gives a better return over a savings account. Salatin throws a small amount of grain onto the bedding throughout the winter to give the pigs something to look for in the spring.

More important is a good deal of advice and the wisdom of experience.

You Can Farm

He is good when he sticks to techniques and farm-systems: This book covers an introduction to small-scale regenerative farming ethos in lots of different areas, from whole farm planning to energy inputs both human, animal and other to marketing.

It’s a good read, although at pages, not a quick one. From my open book post about Wendell Berry’s Unsettling of America: As I read The Unsettling of Americamy own answer came in the form of a question: While this book can be helpful to all farmers, far, targets the wannabes, the folks who actually entertain notions of living, loving and learning on a piece of land.

It acknowledges and celebrates the constraints of small-scale, often family based startup farming systems, and explains a raft of possibilities and approaches for growing that gumption to grow into a viable enterprise.

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Aug 28, Kyle rated it it was ok Shelves: As a side note: In many cases, the information he gives could be enough to run with, but sometimes it will just whet your appetite for more.

At times, Salatin incorporates enough of his own philosophy to make wary readers consider a second opinion–which is fortunate, if inadvertent–but the main theme of the farming part is happily focused on permaculture principles. You Can Farm is probably the Joel Salatin book that kicked off more future farmers than any other, and I have to include us in that count.

Stay right where you are, rent some land somewhere nearby, and farm that plot of land.

Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Salatin focuses on raising livestock, but makes sure to point out many other enterprises that he’s seen work just as well even though he doesn’t have as much personal experience in them. He doesn’t leave much room for endeavors that might cost more money than they absolutely need to.


You Can Farm by Joel Salatin at Chelsea Green Publishing

The main thing that was helpful in this book was his breakdown of the economics of farming and how creatively a farm can be badly managed and lose money. To view it, click here.

Jan 15, John rated it it was amazing.