While I am not much of a gardener, I have enjoyed reading and experiencing Carol Deppe’s books. For having so much practical and solid information, they are compulsively readable, charming and enlightening.
Organized by basic Taoist concepts, Ms. Deppe covers the growth and harvest of the aforementioned vegetables as well as instructions on do-it-yourself seed banks, complete with how to store seeds and “dehybridize” current hybrids. She’s got the science to back it up, as she has a PhD in biology from Harvard, but it’s her practical experience that has the most impact. She lives this stuff and has decades of trial and error and success to back it up. I really appreciate her holistic approach to gardening and food production and using the framework of Taoism has great impact.
Along with all this information, there are recipes, photos and tips on what simple garden tools to use and how to use them without pain, and a section on seed sources.
But mostly I enjoy her writing style, that sly humor and the actual joy she gets out of what she is doing. She tells a great story about walking around her hometown with a 22-pound Kohlrabi Gigante that she had just picked up at the local Farmer’s Market. She ambled down the street and on her errands (even to the library) with this stunning specimen slung over her shoulder, smiling not just because of her outstanding purchase, but for all the astonished looks she would get from passers-by. Soon, folks were smiling along with her, sharing in that two-million-year-deep understanding of the joy and satisfaction of hunting and gathering.
Be aware, observe, notice. Appreciate the small.
Find flavor in the delicate.