Gentle Harvest
Richard Kühnel
208-255 2440

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The following are some of the books and materials we are using as resource:

If you need assistance with custom resource research in sustainability related areas feel free to contact us. This list will be updated periodically.

Please send any comments or suggestions regarding the bibliography page to


Designing and Maintaining your Edible Landscape Naturally by Robert Kourik (added 2007/07/22 I1

"Transform your home with a beautiful bountiful landscape using natural systems ." Metamorphic Press, 1986.
Step by step process for designing an aesthetic landscape using edible plants that fertilize the soil, attract beneficial insects, shelter from erosion, cold, heat and wind, that are suitable for wet soils, shady spots, that improve soil without tilling and then make delicious dishes with the gourmet recipes provided in the book. 

Food Not Lawns by Heather C. Flores (added 2007/05/30 D)

"How to Turn Your Yard into a Garden And Your Neighborhood into a Community." Chelsea Green Publishing Company, 2006.
A how-to-book gardening book motivated not by “what’s in it for me,” but rather by “what’s in it for us”— where us extends to friends, neighbors, co-workers, and, ultimately, to all of humanity and beyond: to the totality of life on Earth. Food Not Lawns assumes that we are all in this life together, so that the ultimate reason for gardening is to benefit each other. Flores suggests higher-level and Permaculture based strategies that can be adapted to one's specific situations and that might lead to novel approaches that work better than any formula given in a book could achieve. Flores states that she has certainly not inherited a single dollar from anyone, nor will she ever, so she is "poor" and lives on just a few thousand dollars a year; she really does not have a fridge and really does compost her poop, and lives in a tiny shack that is rented from a benevolent person.

Four-Season Harvest by Eliot Coleman (added 2007/07/22 I1)

"Organic vegetables from your home garden all year long." Chelsea Green Publishing Company, 1999.
Using sunshine, weather patterns, and harvesting time extension as well as unheated greenhouses Eliot Coleman shows how to have fresh produce from a garden all through the winter.  

Gaia's Garden by Toby Hemenway

"A Guide to Home-Scale Permaculture." Chelsea Green Publishing Company, 2000.
This is the best gardening book I have read so far.  

The New Organic Farmer by Eliot Coleman (added 2007/07/22 D)

"A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener" Chelsea Green Publishing Company, 1995.
Written for the serious gardener or small market farmer, it proves that in terms of both efficiency and profitability, smaller can be better. Quite inspiring and lots of good advise. Very comparable to Idaho's climate at least for part of the year as he is farming in Maine on land that was part of the homestead of Helen and Scott Nearing.  





Eco-Renovation by Edward Harland

"The ecological home improvement guide. Energy, Materials, Space, Health". Chelsea Green Publishing, 1999.
This was one of the early books at making a house "green".  

Energie und Nahrung aus dem Solar-Gewächshaus by Bill Yanda and Rick Fisher. In German. (added 2007/05/30 D)

"Praktische Anleitung für Selbstbau und Nutzung". Hugendubel, 1983.
The authors have many years of experience with solar energy and green houses. They provide all information about orientation, location, materials, construction, heat storage and planting one needs to know to build their own passive solar green house.
The original book was published in the US as "The Food and Heat Producing Solar Greenhouse", John Muir Publications, 1980.

Masonry The Best of Fine Homebuilding. (added 2007/8/26 I2)

Tauton Press, 1997.
A collection of articles from Fine Homebuilding magazine providing preofessional advice for any work with stone and brick.

Natural Remodeling by Carol Venolia & Kelly Lerner

"for the Not-So-Green House. Bringing Your Home into Harmony with Nature". Sterling Publishing, 2006.
One of the latest books on green remodeling with a holistic approach. The authors are among the leading sustainable architects in the USA.  

The Self-Sufficient House by Frank Coffeen

Holt, Rinhart and Winston, 1981
What one can do and buy to make your home more independent of outside systems. Interesting perspective form that time.

The Solar House by Daniel D. Chiras (added 2007/6/1 D)

"Passive Heating and Cooling". Chelsea Green, 2002.
A good overview of the possibilities for the home builder on passive heating and cooling with solar techniques, including air-quality and material selection.



Heart Circles by Tej Steiner

"How Sitting in Circle Can Transform Your World". Interactive Media Publishing, 2006.
How to form heart circles, small and self-facilitated support groups, to empower participants to create in their lives and in the world what they truly want..

Hollywood and Green by Edward Lewine (added 2007/05/30 D)

In the Magazine Section of the New York Times from 2007/05/20.
Ed Begley, an actor, has been greening his house and lifestyle in Los Angeles since the 70ies. This article gives a nice two page short list of all kinds of things one can do for a more sustainable way of living, specially if finances are not so predominant limiting factor.

In Search of the Magic of Findhorn by Karin Bogliolo & Carly Newfeld

Findhorn Press, 2002.
A picture of this community by someone revisiting Findhorn after over 20 years looking for what remains of the original magic.

Neighborhood Calendar by Our United Village (added 5/21/2007)

This is a calendar in a format that serves as a flyer, poster and can also be mailed and was developed by "Our United Village". It contains invitations to 16 events over a period of several months based on surveying 2300 households in the Humboldt neighborhood of Portland, Oregon, USA. It aims to bring together neighbors of common interest to improve the quality of living in the community and to empower them to make the changes they want. It also contains information on benefits of strong communities and the results of the survey. I remembered it when I was working on an invitation for a neighbors' potluck to introduce them to my project of creating a more sustainable way of urban residential living and used it to give me some ideas.


The Death and Life of Great American Cities by Jane Jacobs

Random House, 1992.
The classic on urban planning in the US. Its shortsightedness as well as what gives life and spirit to cities.

Designing Ecological Settlements by Margrit & Declan Kennedy

"Ecological Planning and Building: Experiences in new housing and in the renewal of existing housing quarters in European countries". Dietrich Reimer Verlag, 2000.
Reviews of practical experience and results in using materials which are economical in terms of energy consumption and use of resources, as well as construction techniques for new building and urban renewal.

Die neuen Alchemisten

"Leben-Zusammenleben-Sich selber versorgen". Fisher Taschenbuch Verlag, 1980.
A classic form the early times of ecological design and sustainable living. Reporting about the implementation of an "ark" in Massachusetts, USA. In German.

Ecological Design by Sim van der Ryn & Stuart Cowan

Island Press, 1996.
Design principles that make ecology the basis for design applicable to all level of scale that can help create a more sustainable world.

From Eco-Cities to Living Machines by Nancy Jack & John Todd

"Principals of Ecological Design". North Atlantic Books, 1993.
Ideas on integrated designs for sustainable agriculture, pure water in urban settings and biological wastewater purification.

Landscape Graphics by Grant W. Reid (added 2007/6/1 D)

"Plan, Section, and Perspective Drawing of Landscape Spaces". Watson-Guptill Publications, VNU Business Media, Inc., 2002.
A book exclusively devoted to how to draw landscape graphics starting from the design process, basic drafting and lettering, covering freehand drawing and diagramming and symbols it proceeds to plans, section, and perspective drawing. It includes exercises at the end of each chapter. As I want to improve my drawing skills this has a lot material and is a good resource for self-study.

Sun, Wind & Light by G. Z. Brown & Mark DeKay

"Architectural Design Strategies". John Wiley & Sons, 2001.
How to design buildings that heat with the sun, cool with the wind, light with the sky, and move into the future using on-site renewable resources.


Natural Vegetation of Oregon and Washington by Jerry F. Franklin and C.T.Dyrness (added 2007/08/26 D)

"The classic volume on regional ecology, with more than 500 new bibliographic entries". Oregon State University Press, 1988.
Even though the contents could not be updated with the latest information and Idaho is not included, this book provides plenty of information on regional plant communities, associations, compositions and successions.


Ecological Economics by Herman E. Daly and Joshua Farley (added 2007/08/26 D)

"Principles and Applications". Island Press, 2004.
This book gives a thourough introduction to the field of ecological economics, even though peers in the field do not agree with portions and parts of it. It is recommended to have some prior knowledge of traditional economic theory before reading this book.

The Natural Step for Businesses by Brian Nattrass & Mary Altomare

"Wealth, Ecology and The Evolutionary Corporation". New Society Publishers, 1999.
Presents a sustainable framework for businesses. Case studies of four corporations using this framework as central part of their strategies.

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker

"Mastering the Inner Game of Wealth". Harper Collins Publishers, 2005.
A fascinating mix of empowerment around money and US style marketing that puts focus first on the inner world.








Sepp Holzer's Permakultur by Sepp Holzer (added 2007/07/22 I1)

Leopold Stocker Verlag, 2004.
Known as agricultural rebel in Austria this book describes the way Sepp Holzer has been farming for over 40 years long time before knowing the word permaculture. Brilliant applications and in a quite comparable climate to Idaho, except for the amount of rain in summer, makes this a quite inspiring resource for working with nature. In German.


Plants of Southern Interior British Columbia and the Inland Northwest edited by Roberta Parish,Ray Coupe and Dennis Lloyd (added 2007/07/22 I1)

Lone Pine Publishing, 1996.
This is one of the best and quite handy field guide with close to 700 species relevant to the Inland Northwest that I know of.



Balance Point by Joseph Jenkins (added 2007/08/26 D)

"Searching for a spiritual missing link". Jenkins Publishing, 2000.
Finding the balance point within ourselves might just as well prevent the world from falling out of balance. This is a great book addressing a lot of baisc underlying issues that either seem to propell us forward into planetary destruction or spiritual evolution. There is a balance point between careless selfishness and carful selflessness.

The Intention Experiment by Lynn McTaggert (added 2007/05/30 D)

"Using Your Thoughts to Change Your Life and the World". Free Press, Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2007.
McTaggert has gathered the research, experiments and science from many disciplines including physics, sports, spiritual practices, psychology and biology that proof that thoughts have a direct influence on matter, ourselves, time and space. Consciousness, thoughts and intentions are shaping our world. Did you know that quantum effects have been observed recently on the level of molecules and small crystals? This is quite significant as this is the beginning of a bridge across the conundrum physics theory has been experiencing since Bohr and Einstein, between the opposing laws that seem to govern the tiniest and the largest.

Thinking Mathematically by John Mason

Adison-Wesley, 1985.
A work book to unfold the processes which lie at the heart of mathematics, helpful in understanding the world and oneself, including our emotions.

The Web of Life by Fritjof Capra

"A New Scientific Understanding of Living Systems". Doubleday 1996.
An overall synthesis that tries to integrate new scientific discoveries at the time into a single context.




The Humanure Handbook by Joseph Jenkins (added 2007/08/26 D)

"A Guide to Composting Human Manure". Jenkins Publishing, 1999.
A classic! Dealing with our own human waste in a simple, effective and sustainabel way, making waste=food come true.


Builder's Greywater Guide by Art Ludwig (added 2007/05/30 D)

"Installation of Greywater Systems in New Construction and Remodeling". Oasis Design, 2002.
Art Ludwig probably gives the best advice available in the US on this subject. He writes from knowledge and practical experience, covering the simple to the more complex systems. I found out that Art designed, or at least was involved with the water system for Bea's house in Huehuecottle!


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