The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City

The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City

by Kelly Coyne, Erik Knutzen


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781934170106
Publisher: Process
Publication date: 05/01/2010
Series: Process Self-reliance Series
Pages: 330
Sales rank: 331,186
Product dimensions: 6.56(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.74(d)
Age Range: 14 Years

About the Author

Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen are creators of the blog, a green living and self-sufficiency resource for urbanites. They contribute regularly to Daniel Pinchbeck's new online magazine, They live in Los Angeles. Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen are creators of the blog, a green living and self-sufficiency resource for urbanites. They contribute regularly to Daniel Pinchbeck's new online magazine, They live in Los Angeles.

Table of Contents

Unleashing The Homesteader Within 14

Chapter 1 Start Your Own Farm 20

Strategies for Growing Food in the Urban Setting 20

How to Make Seedballs 30

Permaculture 32

The Practicalities of Growing Food 34

Chapter 2 Essential Projects 46

Five Essential Projects 46

Start a Compost Pile 46

Vermiculture or Composting with Worms 51

Mulch Your Yard 55

Build a Raised Bed 60

How to Build a Self-Watering Container 65

A Treasure Chest of Gardening Projects and Advice 71

How to Start Seeds 71

How to Transplant 74

Fertilizer Tea 77

Trash Talkin' Tire Project #1: Tire Hose Caddy 78

Trash Talkin' Tire Project #2: Stacking Composter 79

Grow Some Lettuce 80

Tips & Tricks for Gardening in Containers 83

The Dirt on Potting Soll 85

Installing Drip Irrigation 86

How to Make a Bean Teepee 89

How to Design a Polycultural Vegetable Bed 91

How to Make Tater Tires 96

Controlling Insect Pests 99

Rotating Crops 104

Animal Pests 107

Why You Might Test Your Soil 110

Not Digging It 112

Chapter 3 Urban Foraging 116

Feral Edibles 116

Invasive Edibles 122

Fruit Foraging 124

Tools for the Fruit Harvester 125

How to Eat Acorns 126

Dumpster Diving 128

Revive Day-Old Bread 130

4 Livestock In The City 134

The Chicken is the New Pug 135

How to Set Up a Brooder 150

Ducks 154

Rabbits 156

Pigeons: A Modest Proposal 157

Quail 158

Bees 159

Chapter 5 Revolutionary Home Economics 166

Preserving the Harvest 166

How to Can 170

Pickling via Lacto-Fermentation 173

Daikon Radish Pickles 174

L'hamd Markad or Preserved Salted Lemons 175

Euell Gibbons' Crock 177

Dehydration: Why Save it for Hangovers? 179

Three Methods for Drying Food 180

Preserving With Vinegar 182

Preserving Fruit in Alcohol: Le Cherry Bounce 184

Preserving Root Vegetables 184

How to Culture Milk 186

Making Yogurt 187

Making Labaneh, or Yogurt Cheese 188

Fil, Piima and Viila 189

Cheesemaking 190

Whole Milk Ricotta 190

Making Butter 191

How to Make Fruit Butter 193

Jams and Jellies 196

Making Stock 196

Five Ways to Preserve a Tomato 197

The Homemade Speakeasy: From Mead to Moonshine 202

Baking on the Homestead 204

Baking with Sourdough 204

Cleaning the Urban Homestead 214

Our Cleaning Cupboard 216

Less Toxic Ways to Deal with Unwelcome Critters 228

A Homestead of Your Own 229

Location Location Location 231

Chapter 6 Be Your Own Utility: Water and Power for the Homestead 238

Harvesting Water 238

Conserving Water 240

Six Ways to Harvest Rainwater 243

Become a Radical Depaver 244

Smart Gutters and Downspouts 245

Earthworks 246

Mulch Basins 247

Terracing 249

Rain Barrels and Cisterns 250

How Much Water Can I Harvest From My Roof? 252

Non-Invasive Greywater Methodologies 257

Highly Invasive Greywater Strategies 257

Greywater Plumbing 101 257

Showers to Flowers 260

Recycling Your Suds 261

Arranging a Twosome or Threesome-Using Diverters 264

Making a Greywater Wetland 266

The Composting Toilet: How to Poop in a Bucket 267

Power to the People 270

Energy Principles 270

Heating 272

Insulation 272

Gathering Solar Heat 273

The High Mass Rocket Heater 275

Cooling 275

How to Make a Living Awning or Shade 276

We're Fans of Fans 278

Water Heater 279

Alternatives to the Gas-Heated Shower 281

Solar Water Heaters for General Household Hot Water 282

Lighting 284

Stoves and Small Appliances 285

Solar Cookers 285

Build a Rocket Stove 288

Tomato Can Stove 290

Heat on the Cheap: Buddy Burners 292

Electronics 294

Washer & Dryer 295

Refrigerator 296

Dishwashers 296

Generating Your Own Power 297

Electricity From Solar Power-The Components 297

Solar Systems: Small, Medium and Large 299

Wind Power 302

Chapter 7 Transportation 306

Transportation Principles 306

The Transportation Triangle: Walking, Biking, Mass Transit 307

Walking 307

Cycling 308

How to Ride in Traffic 309

Finding a Bike 311

Route Choice 313

Cargo Bikes 313

Make Your Own Bike Light 316

Conclusion: The Future 320

Resources 324

Customer Reviews

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The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-Sufficient Living in the Heart of the City 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 25 reviews.
Z7 More than 1 year ago
A GREAT manual! Easy to read, understand, and implement. Lists real projects that anyone could accomplish on any budget. Highly recommended to everyone!
SugarTorch More than 1 year ago
This is a wonderful book in SO many ways. Anyone who is sick and tired of corporations running the world and everything, EVERYTHING being about the all mighty dollar will LOVE this book. Let's take back our lives from all the agencies and corporations who pollute our world, treat us like numbers, not people, poison our kids, and have created a culture that values THINGS and money above all else. For me, this book represents all the ideas and tools I need to put parts of my life back into my own hands. I am 43 and was raised on canned and frozen convenience food so many of these ideas are just mind-blowingly simple and amazing to me! I've strugged with my weight my whole life and it's no wonder because I've mostly consumed dead food. What a disgusting thought. I could go on and on but I won't. If you want to grow your own food and make your own stuff, this book is a good place to start for the ideas and instructions on how to do so. It will surely inspire you to keep doing more and going further. It has me.
BEBBB More than 1 year ago
B & N should never have sent me an email asking for a review on this one. I had already sent them an email the day I bought it telling them that the ebook formatting is horrible. I ask for my money back and they said there was nothing they could do! I guess that is a huge disadvantage of eBooks - you can't return them even if they are defective! I think this is probably a very good book in print format, but on the ebook there are large portion that run off the right hand side of the page and you miss entire sentences or even paragraphs. It is very very hard to read and certainly not worth the $9.99 eBook price.
doctopanga More than 1 year ago
This is an excellent and intelligent discussion of a wide range of issues related to urban homesteading and pursuing a self-sufficient lifestyle in general. Be prepared for the politics that go along with it, but I found the presentations enlightening and thought-provoking even in the few cases I may not have fully agreed with them. Excellent resource/ bibliography!
aleahmarie on LibraryThing 15 days ago
The Urban Homestead is a fun read on the whys and how-tos of urban homesteading. Kelly and Erik aren't providing a philosophical stroll through some idealized maybe-world. They're living this stuff and it shows. This manual on living the good life is funny and practical. A must read for anyone interested in self-sufficiency and the good life.
francescadefreitas on LibraryThing 15 days ago
I live in a rented town house with a strata-managed garden, so I skipped big chunks this book. But there were many projects that interested me, especially the sections on cooking, preserving and household cleaning. Alas, I am not confident in any of these areas, and I require more hand holding than can fit in this book - making sourdough bread for me would require several books, video tutorials, and maybe a visit from a baking friend. So for me this was not an instruction book, but a collection of ideas and inspirations. Braver souls may be able to plunge right in. This book has a huge range of activities from raising chickens to building your own solar panels. This isn't the new revised edition reviewed on Boing Boing.
hjjugovic on LibraryThing 15 days ago
I've had a strong interest in becoming more of a a producer, less of a consumer, and in greening up my home. This book covers a broad range of simple strategies to do exactly that: everything from worm composting to making your own yogurt, both of which I've tried using their instructions. The book is well organized, not intimidating, practical, and encouraging. Highly recommended for anyone else who, like me, was looking for a place to start.
isetziol on LibraryThing 15 days ago
I love, love, love this book! This provides a fabulous introduction to self-reliant living in an urban environment: from solid advice on starting a garden to tips on easy, cheap grey water systems. It's an entertaining read, too!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was more like a reference book on a variety of subjects. I think it would be more useful in paper form than digital to get as much use as possible. Its more of a how do I do ... and flip pages. Not a straight read like. But very informative.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Vegihiker More than 1 year ago
Good idea book on homesteading. I'm working on my MG certification and am turning my 1/10 acre urban property into a food forest - and have pulled plenty of good ideas from this book. Hope it's useful to you.
BxAxDx More than 1 year ago
Good for anyone that wants to learn about homesteading.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
GardeningBear More than 1 year ago
Coyne and Knutzen did a wonderful job with this book. It assumes you know nothing and are interested to learn. It gives explanation for every project. Finally, it gives simple steps to accomplish each idea.
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just_gene More than 1 year ago
The Urban Homestead: Your Guide to Self-sufficient Living in the Heart of the City. THE RESOURCES SECTION is the best set of web links and my favorite feature Kelly Coyne and Erik Knutzen give us a FANTASTIC simple manual for self reliance in an urban home. A simple set of projects. Great ideas. Great graphics. I am a Green Acres Oliver Wendell Douglas kind of guy from planters on the deck to the real veggie gardens with green projects like shading and grey water. I found even more ideas o try out. Growing you own vegetables and herbs... local source... freshest organic food... great exercise... step in to it Non toxic cleaning of your house... saves money... better for your health Composting your food... grass clippings... coffee grounds... egg shells... This is all easy... safe... great for the environment and the best fertilizer available projects on canning and preserving your food with lots of recipes. Let me know what you think.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago