#Wellness Reads: The Encyclopedia of Country Living

Driving home from Squamish one day, 20 or more years ago, I was listening to  The Almanac on CBC radio. The topic was small acreages and people going back to the land. The guest mentioned this book by Carla Emery more than once in his hour on the show. It was called The Encyclopedia of Country Living. An Old Fashioned Recipe Book. I started searching for it as soon as I got home. (This was long before Google so it involved actually phoning book stores. ) I eventually found it and it has been my rural bible ever since.


Carla Emery was a farmer and self proclaimed “back to the lander” in the 1970’s.  She self published the book in the 70’s with a mimeograph and has since sold 750,000 copies. It is a wealth of information and covers everything from buying land to raising goats, making sausage to canning peaches. The chapter on poultry can help you design and build your coop or give you detailed instructions on how to butcher your meat birds. I have turned to this book many, many times over the years. My copy is so worn it has no cover and many dog ears.


The information in this encyclopedia is practical, tried and true and stands the test of time. Whether you’re a backyard gardener or a farmer with many acres there is something in this book for everyone.