Cover image for Farming with the wild : enhancing biodiversity on farms and ranches
Farming with the wild : enhancing biodiversity on farms and ranches
Imhoff, Dan.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
San Francisco : Sierra Club Books, [2003]

Physical Description:
182 pages : color illustrations ; 22 x 30 cm
General Note:
"A Watershed Media book."
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
S441 .I446 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize

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Though it is not widely recognized, modern industrial agriculture, which now affects more than two-thirds of the land in the lower forty-eight states, plays a major role in the rampant decline in biodiversity in the United States. Habitat destruction and fragmentation, displacement of native species and the introduction of exotic species, persecution of predators, and pollution of all kinds are just a few of industrial agriculture's damaging ecological consequences.
Fortunately, a new vision for a more environmentally beneficial and sustainable agriculture is emerging. Such a vision begins with farms that gracefully meld within landscapes, pulsing with a wide range of native species. It combines implementation of landscape-level restoration efforts, natural systems farming research, and the community spirit of farmers markets and local watershed stakeholders.
Presenting an inspiring look at this new conservation-based agriculture, Farming with the Wild offers vivid profiles of more than thirty farms, ranches, and organizations in the United States, together with more than one hundred color photographs. The result is an on-the-ground picture of a new agrarian movement that is slowly sweeping across the nation--a movement that aims to provide healthier food to Americans while restoring healthy ecosystems.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Imhoff's book is less conceptual than Jeffrey A. McNeely and Sara J. Scherr's Ecoagriculture (CH, Jun'03), and somewhat more concrete and less policy-based than The Farm as Natural Habitat, ed. by Dana L. Jackson and Laura L. Jackson (CH, Nov'02). It contains a series of essays on such topics as natural systems farming, nature corridors, wild garden farming, and various local ecomarketing strategies, using well-illustrated examples from 20 of the lower 48 states, representing the major geographic regions of the continental US. Although his general introductory chapter and an essay containing a dozen assumptions on biodiversity in agriculture beg for elaboration, Imhoff does include a practical and well-constructed "Getting Started" postscript that details basic techniques essential to an ecologically sensitive agricultural operation, plus a catalog of major supporting organizations and certification and producer groups. In addition, the essay "Thinking like a Prairie," which highlights the important work of Wes Jackson and the his Land Institute, presents an excellent example of the evolution of environmentally sensitive agricultural research. Anecdotal in structure and quite readable. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. General readers; lower- and upper-division undergraduates; professionals and practitioners. L. S. Cline Southwest Missouri State University

Table of Contents

Forewordp. 6
The Case for Farming with the Wildp. 8
The Sky Islandsp. 21
The Ranch of 20,000 Gabions (El Coronado Ranch, Southeastern Arizona)p. 24
Grassbanking in the Badlands (The Gray Ranch, Animas Valley, Southwestern New Mexico)p. 28
In Search of Ranching's Radical Center (Lake Valley Ranch, Southwestern New Mexico)p. 32
Along the Pollinator Trail (Tubac Farm, Southeastern Arizona)p. 34
The Turner Biodiversity Legacy (Ladder and Armendaris Ranches, Southwestern New Mexico)p. 38
The Sacramento Valleyp. 43
The Revolution at the Hedgerow Farms (Hedgerow Farms, Winters, California)p. 44
Toward a Wilder Family Farm (Rominger Brothers Farms, Winters, California)p. 48
Bats Against Bugs (Sierra Orchards, Winters, California)p. 50
Changing Course: TNC and a Tale of Two Rivers (Cosumnes and Sacramento River Restoration Projects)p. 52
Building a Matrix of Farmland Habitatp. 59
Bringing a Watershed Back to Life (Coon Valley, Wisconsin)p. 62
The Prairie Potholes (Northwestern North Dakota)p. 64
Restoring the Bottomlands (Southwestern Arkansas)p. 68
Rehydrating the ArkLaTex (Northwestern Louisiana)p. 72
Much to Do About Muck (East Central Florida)p. 74
Natural Systems Farmingp. 77
Thinking Like a Prairie (The Land Institute, Salina, Kansas)p. 77
Farming in Leopold's Footsteps (Kirschenmann Family Farms, Medina, North Dakota)p. 84
The Dairyman's Diversity (Enchanted Acres, LaCrosse, Minnesota)p. 88
Unconventional Conventional (Kenagy Family Farms, Corvallis, Oregon)p. 90
Farming Below Zero (Four Season Farm, Harborside, Maine)p. 92
The Farm of Many Faces (Polyface Farm, Staunton, Virginia)p. 96
Corridors, Wildways, and Citizen Monitoringp. 101
Linking Farmscapes, Landscapes, and Human Communities (Adirondack Coast, New York)p. 104
Central Coast Farmscaping (Salinas and Pajaro Valleys, Watsonville, California)p. 106
Building Conservation Communities (Methow Valley, Skagit Valley, Washington)p. 108
The Farm as Park Visitor Center (Pumalin Park, Chile)p. 112
Wild Garden Farmersp. 115
Sangin' in Daniel Boone's Footsteps (Central Kentucky)p. 118
Basins of Relations (Occidental Arts and Ecology Center, Occidental, California)p. 120
Saving the Seeds of Endangered Agriculture (Native Seed Search, Patagonia, Arizona)p. 124
The Appalachian Food Forest (Long Branch Environmental Education Center, North Carolina)p. 126
Leading Edge Lettuce (Wild Garden Seed, Philomath, Oregon)p. 128
Dry Farmed Tomatoes (Molino Creek, Davenport, California)p. 130
Ingrained Traditions (White Earth Land Recovery Project, Minnesota)p. 132
Ecolabels and Local Marketing Initiativesp. 137
Making Peace with Predators (13-Mile Lamb and Wool, Belgrade, Montana)p. 141
Salmon-Safe: Evolution of an Ecolabel (Pacific Rivers Council, Portland Oregon)p. 143
On Habit and Habitat (Pluma Hidalgo, Mexico)p. 145
CSA: Linking Farms and Tables (Common Harvest Farm, Osceola, Wisconsin)p. 148
A New Brand for Beef (Ervins Natural Beef Company, Arizona)p. 149
Getting Startedp. 151
Some Basicsp. 152
Managing for Wildlifep. 154
Bird Friendly Farmingp. 162
Landowner Incentive Programsp. 164
Wild Farm Alliance Platformp. 167
Supporting Organizationsp. 168
Bibliography, Notes, Index, Creditsp. 174