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No-Till Intensive Vegetable Culture


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Table of Contents

Introduction Chapter 1 The Growing Environment Chapter 2 Balancing Crop Growth Chapter 3 Preparing Land for No-Till Chapter 4 No-Till Techniques Chapter 5 Seeding and Transplanting Chapter 6 Mulching and Irrigation Chapter 7 Planning Crop Rotation and Planting Cycles Chapter 8 Soil Fertility and Crop Health Chapter 9 Fertilization Materials and Methods Chapter 10 Composting Chapter 11 IMOs: Indigenous Microorganisms Chapter 12 Weed, Insect, and Disease Control Chapter 13 Producing Vegetables Year-Round Chapter 14 Harvest and Marketing Chapter 15 The Grower Acknowledgements Bibliography Index

About the Author

Bryan O'Hara has been growing vegetables for a livelihood since 1990 at Tobacco Road Farm in Lebanon, Connecticut. He works with natural systems to build complex and balanced soil life, the result of which is a highly productive, vibrant growing system. He uses techniques that include no-till soil management, cover cropping, composting, foliar fertilization, and indigenous microorganism cultures to grow crops year-round. Bryan was named Northeast Organic Farming Association's Farmer of the Year in 2016. He speaks throughout the Northeast and beyond on vegetable production techniques and is known for providing mountains of details in a concise, practical, and cohesive manner.


"This book is a grower's dream, filled with crisp and invaluable details and clear-eyed explanations and guidance that connect 'how-to' with 'why.' O'Hara's innovative and pioneering methods amply demonstrate the power--and profitability--of prioritizing soil health and thriftiness alongside keen and insightful observations of field conditions. Simply put, you need this book at your fingertips if you want to successfully grow no-till vegetables."--Anne Bikle, coauthor of The Hidden Half of Nature "Perhaps no calling demands so many disparate skills as that of the cultivation of vegetables to provide for others in harmony with nature. The compleat farmer is a master of all trades: observer, synthesizer, balancer of polarities, soil chemist, labor efficiency expert, coach, decision maker, harvester, marketer, and deep thinker. Using detailed examples and sharp tools, master farmer Bryan O'Hara has built an integrated philosophical framework and operations manual for this blessed work that has so much to offer both farmer and eater."--CR Lawn, founder, Fedco Seeds "Bryan O'Hara takes us on a journey to create a healthy, vibrant ecosystem that generates health through the production of nutrient-dense food while also helping to build community. I highly recommend this book to all those who seek a better future for humanity."--Gabe Brown, rancher; author of Dirt to Soil "Bryan O'Hara is one of the most brilliant vegetable farmers in North America. Few have mastered the ability to grow vegetables without diminishing the soil with destructive tillage. This humble soil genius understands the true art and science of vegetable farming. I highly recommend this book to all those who want to farm well and restore soil."--Ray Archuleta, farmer; founder, Soil Health Academy; partner, Understanding Ag LLC "An inspiring guide to merging traditional and modern practices for successful small-scale vegetable farming based on rebuilding soil life. Having seen the incredible soil at Bryan O'Hara's farm, I can attest that it speaks for itself!"--David R. Montgomery, author of Growing a Revolution "Although I am not a no-till grower, I respect growers like Bryan O'Hara who are achieving great things using this method. No-Till Intensive Vegetable Culture is rich with intuitive detail; the text overflows with great understanding of soil and plants and how to cultivate them in a thoughtful, sympathetic, and beautiful way. To grow well, one must give of oneself, and Bryan O'Hara of Tobacco Road Farm has certainly done that. He is a true biodynamic grower, whose approach to the soil and its cultivation is assiduous. I have been a biodynamic grower for over twenty years, there is much for me to learn from O'Hara's book."--Jane Scotter, Fern Verrow Farm, Herefordshire; coauthor of Fern Verrow "A must-read for anyone looking to take regenerative farming to the next level. When I visited Tobacco Road Farm, I realized that in a single day, I could only scratch the surface of all that Bryan O'Hara has to teach us. Whether it be Bryan's approach to no-till soil management, Korean Natural Farming and indigenous microorganism cultures, high-carbon composting, innovative mulching techniques, or year-round growing methods, every grower will find valuable ideas and instruction in this book. Bryan offers a whole-farm plan to grow productively while contributing to the healing of Mother Earth. Whether you follow Bryan's method in whole or in part, his ideas will go a long way towards helping you 'close the circle' and farm more ecologically, efficiently, enjoyably, and profitably while reducing outside inputs."--Andrew Mefferd, editor, Growing for Market magazine; author of The Organic No-Till Farming Revolution "No-Till Intensive Vegetable Culture is one of the most helpful guides for managing a vegetable production system I've encountered in over three decades of teaching in this area. Bryan O'Hara is a leading authority on building a farming operation that relies on knowledge rather than chemicals, and his concepts of balanced growth and crop plant polarities are innovative and insightful ways of looking at horticultural husbandry. Readers will gain intimate knowledge about working in an integrated manner with all components of a no-till production system. I take my students to Bryan's farm to experience his wellspring of innovative organic practices firsthand, and I plan on using this book as a text for my courses."--Dr. Gerald Berkowitz, professor of plant science, University of Connecticut "No-Till Intensive Vegetable Culture is the best practical manual for vegetable growers that I am aware of. From his deep wisdom and experience, Bryan O'Hara covers tillage alternatives, planting, seed saving, mineral balancing, mulching, composting, marketing, and all the other dynamics of running a successful vegetable farm. Far beyond numbers, techniques, and prescriptions, Bryan describes the expressions of principles and forces that govern growth, capturing and explaining subtleties and nuances that are foundational to vitality and providing readers with a deeper understanding that allows for better decision making."--Dan Kittredge, founder and executive director, Bionutrient Food Association "Bryan O'Hara has huge experience: His book has grown out of healthy soil and reveals an impressive amount about how to grow great food, practically and economically."--Charles Dowding, no dig gardening expert; creator of the Charles Dowding No Dig website

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