The Farmer’s Library is a project to gather technical information relevant to farming, and to make that information easily accessible. My intention is to publish brief, practical guides to different aspects of the farm operation. The first of these guides was released in May of 2012, entitled Small Farm Equipment (click for more information).
I’m currently planning the next round of publication, and two booklets are in the works. One is a short picture-based guide to small engine troubleshooting, and the other is an introduction to irrigation systems and equipment. They should be available in the fall/winter.
Update (Jan 11): First round of resources added, including download-able service log templates. Also, apologies, but shipping to Canada is getting expensive.
I myself began farming as an apprentice, and I remember how difficult it was to find good, relevant information on the tools and equipment I used daily. However, I benefited from the instruction of experienced farmers, and through exploration and trial and error I’ve become comfortable with all sorts of mechanical work. For those farmers who lack so many years of direct instruction, or are less-inclined to explore on their own, there are all-too-limited resources available for learning. Most of the relevant books date to the first half of the last century. Field days, seminars, and conferences offer a wealth of information, but these occasions are all too infrequent to pass along all the day-to-day skills of farm work.
It’s time to update the literature for the current generation of farmers. We work long hours on small farms scattered throughout the countryside, and not all of us have ample opportunity to learn directly from our forebears. I hope that the resources offered here will help to address the need for broad-based education in the trade of farming. Employers need not be relied upon as the sole source of training, and newer growers may enjoy more success and satisfaction in daily work.
Collaboration, input, and feedback are all warmly welcomed.
Best wishes for a good season,
Happily hosted at Gaia Host