Review: The Backyard Homestead Guide to Growing Organic Food

Posted May 12, 2024 by Richetta in Adult Non-Fiction, Book Reviews, Gardening / 0 Comments

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I received this book for free from Storey Publishing in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

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Review: The Backyard Homestead Guide to Growing Organic FoodThe Backyard Homestead Guide to Growing Organic Food by Tanya Denckla Cobb
Published by Storey Publishing on February 20, 2024
Genres: Gardening / Organic, Gardening / Techniques, Gardening / Vegetables, House & Home / Sustainable Living
Pages: 328
Format: Paperback
Source: Storey Publishing
Buy on Bookshop

This essential guide to growing a bountiful food garden includes detailed seed-starting, growing, and harvesting information for 62 vegetables, fruits, and herbs, a complete companion-planting guide, and organic pest-control handbook.

The latest addition to Storey's bestselling Backyard Homestead series, The Backyard Homestead Guide to Growing Organic Food is a one-stop reference for all the key information food gardeners need to grow a healthy, bountiful garden. Author Tanya Denckla Cobb presents key information based on extensive research and years of experience, including when to start seeds for each type of crop (and at what temperature), how far apart to space seedlings, how to tell when a crop is ready to harvest, and notes on preservation. The book features a comprehensive companion planting guide and an in-depth review of the most effective organic pest control practices, including recipes for how to make your own pest deterrent sprays.

May is planting month for many Northern and Mid-Atlantic regions. Mother’s Day Weekend happens to be the sweet spot in my gardening zone 7B to plant summer veggies. Or it was…climate change has made the area warmer, earlier. So I thought it would be a greats opportunity to share this new book that I love, The Backyard Homestead Guide to Growing Organic Food by Tanya Denckla Cobb, with all of my gardeners out there. Because Books and Gardens are my thing!!!!

First, I love this series! I stay checking out The Backyard Homestead from the library every year and I have a signed copy of the Kitchen Know-How in my personal food preservation library. (Yes, it’s one of my other hobbies. You grow food, you have to learn how to efficiently use and store it!) They are written by active gardeners who share their wisdom they have learned over the years. It’s like a mentor in a book. 

Ready to Go All-Natural?

If you are a beginning gardener with a few seasons under your belt I think this is a great book to take you to the next level. Organic gardening is fulfilling but it isn’t easy. You really have to rely on companion planting and be creative with natural solutions to get a good crop. You can’t compare your yields to commercial or gardening that includes chemical pest control. But you will indeed be healthier from eating your own homegrown, organic food. Plus, for some foods it will be cheaper than buying them organic in the store. 

One Stop for All The Info You Need

I love all of the information provided for each fruit or vegetable. Everything is in one place from the information you need to start out successfully to the info you need to preserve your harvest. Having all of that information in one place is a lifesaver for those who find themselves having to flip between books to get all of the information they need for just one plant. 

The companion planting information was very helpful. That’s one of the main ways I’m trying to improve with my gardening. If you aren’t familiar, pairing certain plants together helps repel certain types of pests that are attracted to one of the plants. For example, plant marigolds with your tomatoes to repel certain pests like aphids, but don’t plant it near potatoes or neither plant will do well. 

I love the section on organic remedies. It gives lots of information on things you can do in your own practice as a gardener to solutions when diseases pop up. It also gives suggestions for dealing with bigger pests like animals. There are so many options for how you can respond to disease and pest control. 


Overall, a great edition to the series for small and backyard gardeners. My copy is definitely going to get some wear and tear as I trudge back and forth with it from the garden! I’m so glad to have one book that has everything I need for organic gardening. 

Looking for more gardening book reviews? Check out New Gardening Books for the Creative Spirit

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