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My first book on gardening, and it was a good one to start. I feel blessed I found it online for a few bucks. Ruth is long past her prime, in fact I believe she is pushing up daisies now. However, her timeless pragmatic, practical and seasoned approach is really summarized in one statement. Mulch. Its all about the mulch, over and over again. The book is a great read to climb into someone's old time thoughts and old time ways. Of which all still apply. To put it simply, use Mulch from straw and you will avoid frost, weeds, and malnutrition of soil. Its worth owning, if you find it on a budget sale. Otherwise, simply know Ruth would sing praises to you if you mulch yourself to death as she did.
Although I haven't touched a copy of this book in decades, I remember how well Ruth Stout's methods worked in our garden. My dad was the driving force behind a vegetable garden that practically required a machete to harvest! I merely observed, read, and consumed the vegetables (I was 14 at the time).
Ruth Stout is a wise woman with a great sense of humor. Her writing style keeps you wanting to read more.
This book makes a lot of sense, and I have read it cover to cover this winter. I plan to implement her gardening methods this year.
I love the idea of never tilling the garden, and just keep piling organic matter on it. In the spring, just pull the mulch back and plant your plants and seeds. No weeds to pull or hoe, and the organic mulch feeds the plants. I can't think of a better way to garden.
This is the book that has most influenced my life. Ruth Stout is probably the creator of the deep mulch gardening technique, which makes it possible to garden without spending excessive time weeding. Hence, gardening without work. I read this book in my teens and have applied her concepts for my 30+ years of gardening with consistent success. Practical genius!