A Very Small Farm

Posted by on February 10, 2012

Book cover: A Very Small Farm

A Very Small Farm, by William Paul Winchester.

This book won the 1996 Oklahoma Book Award for Non-Fiction. The award’s website describes it thus: “In these pages, Winchester shares his meditations about the life of the small farmer-a life richly experienced. His philosophy, like his lifestyle, is simple and yet profound.”

When William Paul Winchester was a young man, he bought twenty acres of Oklahoma farmland and began living the self-sufficient life. In this well-written book, he talks about the house he built, the bee hives, the chickens, the crops, the hen house, the cows, the orchard, the small woods he planted… He also provides enough information about what farm life involves that the reader feels more informed, without overwhelming with too much detail. (The only exception to this is the chapter of journal entries that include a little too much weather data.) The last two chapters, about harvesting wheat and amaranth and preserving food, include several recipes that sound awfully good.

I really enjoyed reading A Very Small Farm. I’ve stuck so many bookmarks in this little book, I might have to buy my own copy before I return it to the library.


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