The United Nations has proclaimed May 22 as the International Day for Biological Diversity to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues. This year, the theme is “Our solutions are in nature” to emphasize hope, solidarity and the importance of working together at all levels to build a future of life in harmony with nature. Restorative agriculture must play a piece in this future, and to that end, we wanted to make sure our readers were aware of the many wonderful resources we offer to help make this possible.
In the Shadow of Green Man
Witnessing firsthand the human suffering caused by unjust and environmentally destructive farming practices set author Reginaldo Haslett-Marroquin on a path of helping people lift themselves through, of all things, tapping the natural behaviors of the lowly chicken. In addition to writing In the Shadow of Green Man, he is now the principal architect of the innovative poultry-centered regenerative agriculture model that is at the heart of Main Street Project’s work. His focus is on the development of multi-level strategies for building regenerative food and agriculture systems that deliver social, economic and ecological benefits.
Wilding: Returning Nature to our Farm
For years Charlie Burrell and his wife, Isabella Tree, farmed Knepp Castle Estate and struggled to turn a profit. By 2000, with the farm facing bankruptcy, they decided to try something radical. They would restore all 3,500 acres to the wild. Using herds of free-roaming animals to mimic the actions of the megafauna of the past, they hoped to bring nature back to their depleted land. Soon, new life flooded into Knepp, now a breeding hotspot for rare and threatened species like turtle doves, peregrine falcons, and purple emperor butterflies. At a time of looming environmental disaster, Wilding is an inspiring story of a farm, a couple, and a community transformed.
Around the globe most people get their calories from “annual” agriculture — plants that grow fast for one season, produce lots of seeds, then die. Every single human society that has relied on annual crops for staple foods has collapsed. Restoration Agriculture explains how we can have all of the benefits of natural, perennial ecosystems and create agricultural systems that imitate nature in form and function while still providing for our food, building, fuel and many other needs — in your own backyard, farm or ranch.
Farming on the Wild Side
Nancy and John Hayden have spent the last quarter century transforming their livestock grazing operation into an agroecological fruit farm, nursery, and pollinator sanctuary. Both expert guide and inspiring narrative, Farming on the Wild Side offers new ways to manage old farms while also documenting the Haydens’ unique and evolving relationship with their ecosystem and its inhabitants. It’s a small-farm success story about the things each of us can do to heal the land and ourselves.
Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter
In Eager, environmental journalist Ben Goldfarb reveals that our modern idea of what a healthy landscape looks like and how it functions is wrong, distorted by the fur trade that once trapped out millions of beavers from North America’s lakes and rivers. The consequences of losing beavers were profound: streams eroded, wetlands dried up, and species from salmon to swans lost vital habitat. Eager is a powerful story about one of the world’s most influential species, how our landscapes have changed over the centuries, and how beavers can help us fight drought, flooding, wildfire, extinction, and the ravages of climate change.