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Gaia's Garden


Gaia's Garden Cover

ISBN13: 9781890132521
ISBN10: 1890132527
All Product Details


Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Permaculture is a verbal marriage of "permanent" and "agriculture". Australian Bill Mollison pioneered its development.

Key features include:

  • use of compatible perennials
  • non-invasive planting techniques
  • emphasis on biodiversity
  • specifically adaptable to local climate, landscape, and soil conditions
  • and highly productive output of edibles

Now, picture your backyard as one incredibly lush garden, filled with edible flowers, bursting with fruit and berries, and carpeted with scented herbs and tangy salad greens. The visual impact is of Monet's palette, a wash of color, texture, and hue. But this is no still life. The flowers nurture endangered pollinators. Bright-featured songbirds feed on abundant berries and gather twigs for their nests.

The plants themselves are grouped in natural communities, where each species plays a role in building soil, deterring pests, storing nutrients, and luring beneficial insects. And finally, you — good ol' homo sapiens — are an integral part of the scene. Your garden tools are resting against a nearby tree, and have a slight patina of rust, because this garden requires so little maintenance. You recline into a hammock to admire your work. You have created a garden paradise.

This is no dream, but rather an ecological garden, which takes the principles of permaculture and applies them on a home-scale. There is nothing technical, intrusive, secretive, or expensive about this form of gardening. All that is required is some botanical knowledge (which is in this book) and a mindset that defines a backyard paradise as something other than a carpet of grass fed by MiracleGro.


"Gaia's Garden is simply the best permaculture book ever written, and is in the running for best gardening book ever written. No one should be without it." Sharon Astyk, author of Depletion and Abundance: Life on the New Home Front

Book News Annotation:

"Gaia" (not in the glossary) refers to the view that the Earth is a living, interconnected organism. The associate editor of The Permaculture Activist, who gardens in Southern Oregon, treats gardens as backyard ecosystems. The book includes organic garden design illustrations, and such useful information as the differences between immature and mature ecosystems, a garden designer's checklist, plants for attracting wildlife, and resources.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

About the Author

Toby Hemenway teaches permaculture and consults and lectures on ecological design throughout the country. His writing has appeared in magazines such as Whole Earth Review, Natural Home, Permaculture Activist, and Kitchen Gardener. He worked in biotechnology for a number of years before moving into permaculture. He was the editor of Permaculture Activist for five years and is currently working to develop urban sustainability resources in Portland, Oregon where he lives.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

vvvero, March 1, 2009 (view all comments by vvvero)
It's almost springtime, folks! Time to get planting! And this book is a great place to learn about how to create a beautiful, organic, earth-friendly garden.
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(5 of 10 readers found this comment helpful)
Leon, June 26, 2007 (view all comments by Leon)
This is one "gardening book" that you may just read cover-to-cover. It is a joy to read and the information is top-notch. If you try out just one technique from the book (such as sheet mulching!), it will have paid for itself.

This is also a great permaculture text for beginners and experts alike. The garden is but one example of how your life's projects can be enhanced by permaculture ideas.
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(11 of 18 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture
Todd, John
Hemenway, Toby
Todd, John
Chelsea Green
White River Junction, VT
Organic gardening
Gaia hypothesis
Natural landscaping
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
10 x 8 x 0.625 in 18.5 oz

Related Subjects

Home and Garden » Gardening » General
Home and Garden » Gardening » Organic Gardening
Home and Garden » Gardening » Permaculture
Home and Garden » Sustainable Living » Permaculture
Science and Mathematics » Agriculture » General
Science and Mathematics » Agriculture » Organic
Science and Mathematics » Nature Studies » General

Gaia's Garden
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 240 pages Chelsea Green Publishing Company - English 9781890132521 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Gaia's Garden is simply the best permaculture book ever written, and is in the running for best gardening book ever written. No one should be without it."
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