If you want a book that lives up to it's name, this is it - The Practical Homestead: The backyard handbook for growing food, raising animals, & nurturing your land, by Paul Heiney. The title says it all!
I am amazed at how each of the homesteading books I am reading is different from the rest. This book, as you might expect, has some very practical considerations.
- "homefarm" size (in acres)
- uses and difficulties of various animals
- uses and difficulties of tractors (or draft animals)
- how to make a useful hedge row
- diagrams, illustrations, and glossy photos
- much, much, much more!!!
Another terrific book is The Self-Reliant Homestead, by Charles A. Sanders.
This book was also very practical. Both of these books covered a variety of topics. And, while some topics overlapped, the material mentioned did not. This book has a lot of technical information that I did not understand so well, but my husband would be fascinated by. This book contains ideas for every aspect of homesteading: from choosing and buying land, to planting a garden, to raising livestock, to how to can your veggies, and how to make your own bread.
This is a VERY brief review of a very thorough and helpful book.
I recommend that you get both of these books from the library, as they will help you in whatever season of life you are in... from an apartment (daydreaming of the future) to seasoned homesteader. Something for everyone!
Only one disclaimer. Both books use the word "hell" one time (that I caught). And, the book by Sanders speaks about drinking alcohol and jests one time about divorce. Other than these troubles, the books were very good.