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  • Restoration Agriculture

  • Real-World Permaculture for Farmers
  • Written by: Mark Shepard
  • Narrated by: Jonathan Todd Ross
  • Length: 13 hrs and 4 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (44 ratings)

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Restoration Agriculture

Written by: Mark Shepard
Narrated by: Jonathan Todd Ross
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Publisher's Summary

Restoration Agriculture reveals how to sustainably grow perennial food crops that can feed us in our resource-compromised future.  

The restoration agriculture system described in this award-winning book works! It is possible for humans to produce staple foods using perennial agricultural ecosystems that actually improve the quality of the environment. This can be done on a backyard, farm, or ranch scale and is needed right now - on a global scale.  

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. Using the restoration agriculture system, an oak savanna mimic will produce more than twice the number of edible human calories per acre as an average acre of corn, never needs to be planted again, prevents erosion, creates oil, and can be managed with no fossil fuel inputs. This book, based on real-world practices, presents an alternative to the agriculture system of eradication and offers exciting hope for our future.

©2013 Mark Shepard (P)2019 Tantor

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Changed the way I will grow my food for ever!

I've been gardening for 3 years now and not a single person has changed my views like this author has. I will start a food forest of my own and try to inspire others!

6 people found this helpful

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Just bad woowoo bro science

Not good. No science-based info. Focus on feel good woowoo farming that us real farmers know is no walin the park. There is a gigantic body of scientific research on regenerative agriculture - use that.

2 people found this helpful

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A tour de force on a crucial subject -

After my first "audit" of this wonderful book, I found myself wanting to narrate it properly and listen to it again. As strange as this may sound it's true! Restoration Agriculture is a comprehensive masterwork that describes in rich detail all the elements that are necessary to understand and incorporate into a "Forest Garden". But oh, how constantly grating is the enthusiastically inept reading of this wonderful work. It truly needs to be read by a professional narrator, or, preferably, the author, who knows exactly which words to emphasize in order to bring out the richness of the text, and the depth of the wisdom it contains. Mr. Ross seizes upon and annihilates with enthusiasm the very first verb or a noun that sounds as though it probably needs it. Like reading a teleprompter, word by word, with no idea of what's on the next as yet invisible line. If he forgets to emphasize the right word as he passes it by (not quite as frequent) he then proceeds to assail the next non-article with unbridled passion, usually completely misplaced. So many times I almost cried out in anguish for Stephen Fry. But...
I'M GOING TO BUY THIS AMAZING BOOK AND READ IT OUT LOUD TO MYSELF!

Thank you Mr. Shepard for writing this book.

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Must listen - inspiring way to look at growing foo

I think this book introduces the change that we need in the world. A lot of data and numbers are given but they provide back ground for a great option in agriculture moving forward. I'm excited to do my part in planning for permaculture.

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So interesting!

Found this book so interesting I listened to it a second time!
It was nice to hear the positive references to my home province of Saskatchewan mentioned on multiple occasions as well.
Helps with the fact that others have done this here before!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-01-09

Did not enjoy being lectured on global warming.

it was hard to finish. I love the ideas of putting trees in the ground and making things better in my small part of the world. I did not enjoy being lectured on how terrible we as a scocity are. stop lecturing just need the information to make my part of the world productive.

35 people found this helpful

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  • Taylor Britton
  • 2021-04-23

identifying problems but misidentifying causes

the author gets so close to the heart of the problem but just misses the target. much the same for a few of his solutions.

he identifies financial profit as being necessary to success but also seems to blame the greedy profit driven corporations to be responsible for the problems in big agro. but as he also seems to realize, it isn't the profit incentives, it's the subsidies. a corporation is harmless without government support. markets will destroy any corporation that isn't 'restorative' unless a government is there to prop them up and bail them out.

government is the enemy of sustainability and the future of restoration agriculture.

and those who wish to thrive in restorative ways must be so efficient as to out compete big agro even with their various hand outs and monopoly generating regulations. the solution is not to convince governments to embrace permaculture, this will only destroy it just as makes the author's bees and trees etc weak to spray them with chemicals and various inputs. to save agriculture and the world government and it's cronies must be out competed, defeated and otherwise made obsolete.

17 people found this helpful

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  • Adam
  • 2019-12-16

brilliant eye opening perspective on agriculture!

anyone worried about agriculture practices and the environmental degradation that follows will be captivated by this book. Mark Shepard is permaculture farming on an industrial scale, his perspective on how to farm is truly unique. I have struggled coddling fruit trees but I am adopting the STUN method of planting and will definitely view and approach things differently after learning from this book.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Megan
  • 2020-12-28

Worth it!

Very interesting, informative, and inspiring. Everyone should read about the benefits of permaculture and food forestry. Also, if you have Netflix, a good companion might be the documentary Kiss the Ground, as it gives a good bit of visual aid to this story as well as expounding on some central ideas.

11 people found this helpful

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  • Shawna Roberts
  • 2021-10-07

Excellent "why" book, and good clear "how" as well

I recently made the decision to restore my small farm to forest, regardless of whether it made money. The forest needed to return. My husband was wafflingly supportive. Then I found this book, and was able to envision a way to have a forest that was profitable. This book is excellent for folks with farmland who want to find a better way. (It is probably great for other folks too... I can only vouch for me as a farmland owner.)
As a former commercial beekeeper, I can tell you that he is only sort of accurate about bees and beekeeping, but I have talked to beekeepers who are more inaccurate. It's hard to get bees right.
Also as a former commercial beekeeper, I was thrilled to hear Shepard speak honestly about the near impossibility of earning 100% of one's income from the farm. You should plan to be profitable, but you'll probably need a side hustle. Every aspiring farmer needs to hear that, as well as every struggling farmer. My husband is feeling much better about restoring our forest, now that he understands how that restoration can provide some profit. When I found a patch of wild hazelnuts on the property and explained how Shepard grows hazelnuts, he even got excited. Him: "And whatever else happens, we'll never starve!" This book is not a blueprint, it's a vision. Catch the vision and translate it onto your own property in your own style with your own resources and priorities. You'll never starve.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Charles Robert Mccafferty
  • 2021-06-18

Details on how to begin not entailed

I was interested in the book to learn and apply restoration agriculture. This book provides very little detail on how to begin, what it is.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Martin Rubio
  • 2020-05-21

very real a must read book

once i finish listening to this book i just realized how cruel we really are as a resident of earth. and this book tells me how monocrop system in agriculture had a big impact in our ecosysytem and in our health as a human being..such a great book

6 people found this helpful

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  • Melinda Oldham
  • 2020-08-26

Excellent Exposé On Perennial Agriculture

I have treasured the value and power of perennials on our farm for a long time. However I have not taken the time to consider seriously how that might be expanded across our entire operation. This book provided that opportunity and important elements for implementation.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Marshall M.
  • 2020-05-18

Fantastic resource

Inspirational, informative and just enough for basic to commercial.

Way to not sell anything; instead this resource asks the reader to question everything and not be satisfied with the current facade.

My next step is to write the author and personally thank him and his mentors for this wonderful book!

Thank you Mark Shepard and influencing team members!

3 people found this helpful

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  • Matt Johnson
  • 2022-04-01

Waste of time...

What a waste of time. The author thinks we can simply turn everything into a savannah and eat nuts berries and turkeys. I made it through the first 4 chapters of liberal talking points just to be further disappointed with the rest of the content. I gave up after chapter 7...

2 people found this helpful