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Farmer Phil's Permaculture (Picture book)

 
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Farmer Phil's Permaculture by Phil Williams and Denise Williams, illustrated by Victor Guiza



I give this book 8.5 out of 10 acorns.

I have the digital version of this book. The illustrations are a little too "computer graphic-y" for my artistic tastes. Characters and plants and animals seem to be "pasted" on the background, and not everything seems to be the same degree of detail and so it sort of clashes. I found this distracting. On the other hand, my three-year old son enjoyed the book, and the illustrations didn't seem to damper his enjoyment or his learning from this book.

The book follows little Eden and her family as they move from the city out to the country to fulfill their dream of being farmers. But, farming ends up not being nearly as fun or easy as they thought: there's pests in their apples and the farm looks more like a factory than a farm. Then, one day, Eden peers though a fence to see her neighbor, Phil, seems to be farming in much easier, much more beautiful way. Eden comes to find the that the way he's managing land is called permaculture. His land has herb spirals, hugelkulture, a wofati-like house, animals integrated into the orchard,  wind mills, water mills, solar power, mandala garden beds, and more I probably missed. Little Eden then goes and tells her dad about Farmer Phil, and they then tranform their property into a permaculture paradise.

It's a sweet story that rather passes over the hard work that permaculture is, especially when one is starting out. But, it is a children's book, and the happy ending is happy, and children learn the difference between a factory farm and a permaculture farm, and they get to see that integrating plants and animals and making the best use of one's resources, makes for a much healthier, happier, and productive farm.

All in all, it's a great book for kids, and a nice introduction into permaculture for them.
 
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