My husband is trying to understand my new curiosity about farming. I don't understand it myself, but I keep reading books about people who farm.
I especially like the books written by people who had a childhood similar to mine - suburban without even a garden. I loved the first book I read, The Dirty Life. (click to read my review)
So, when I saw Growing a Farmer: How I learned to Live Off the Land by Kurt Timmermeister, I picked it up at my local library.
Timmermeister started his career as a chef, then moved to owning several successful restaurants in Seattle.
Quite by accident, it seems, he ended up buying some acreage on an island in the Seattle area. In Growing a Farmer, Timmermeister documents his journey from urbanite to farmer, the lessons he learned, the mistakes he made and how he made his farm a success. For now.
I really enjoyed this book. I admire Timmermeister's tenacity and determination in starting his farm. I appreciate his honesty about his farm, his mistakes, and the difficulties of life as a farmer. It's hard to not make farming sound idyllic, yet Timmermeister succeeds, in some ways, by giving an honest look at the hard, unrelenting work it takes to create and run a farm.
Of course, Timmermeister loves what he does, and his passion shines in this book. So, parts of his life sound idyllic. And it's easy, as a reader, to brush over the years and years of hard work he's put into his land, since he writes about twenty years of life and work in a mere 312 pages.
If, even after reading the whole book, you're inclined to start your own farm, Timmermeister gives a thorough bibliography at the end of books he's found irreplaceable.