Ten Acres is Enough

Edmund Morris

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“Recently we have seen a great back-to-the-land movement, with many young professional people returning to small scale farming; thus it is great fun to read about someone who did exactly the same thing in 1864. In that year, Mr. Edmund Morris gave up his business and city life for a farm of ten acres, made a go of mixed farming and then wrote a book about it. Mr. Morris proves Abraham Lincoln’s prediction: “The greatest fine art of the future will be the making of a comfortable living from a small piece of land.” — Sally Fallon, The Weston Price Foundation.

“I am loving this book. It is so full of information that I can only read a little at a time. I need to read it twice and take notes the next time through. It all about permaculture before the word was even created. Everything in this book can be applied to today’s homesteading too. I cant wait to try some of these principals on my own 10 acres!”

This book may be about farming and homesteading, and indeed it is a delightfully readable autobiography of a farmer in the America of the 1860s, but it also about much, much more. The challenges that faced the author are timeless, as are his courage, commitment, and ingenuity. There are insights for anyone, farmer or not, in this book.

“As you would have your children intelligent, virtuous, and happy, and their memory, in later life, of early home a pleasant one, so make your farm and your children’s home your business of life, then adorn that business throughout. If you would inspire your own children and your neighbors with the nobleness of your business, then draw about you such an array of beauty as no one but the cultivator of the soil can collect. Let every foot of your farm show the touch of refinement. While you are arranging your fields for convenient and successful cropping, let it be done with order and neatness. While building the fence, let it be beautiful as well as substantial. While arranging your vegetable gardens and orchards do not overlook geometrical regularity. Do not, on any account, omit the planting of flowers and the various kinds of fruit trees.” – The author

“I rated this book with 5 stars because I enjoyed it a lot. Even though it describes farming processes about 150 years old, the information it offers is applicable to today’s small truck farmer. I loved reading how he cleverly learned how to increase his crop quantity and quality. A lot of his ideas could be put to used by just about any vegetable and fruit grower. It was also amusing and educational to see the costs and earnings then and realize how much our dollar has depreciated.” – Reader review


  1. City experiences ~ moderate expectations
  2. Practical views ~ safety of investments in land
  3. Resolved to go ~ escape from business ~ choosing a location
  4. Buying A farm ~ a long search ~ anxiety to sell ~ rorced to quit
  5. Making a purchase ~ first impressions
  6. Planting a peach orchard ~ how to preserve peach trees
  7. Planting raspberries and strawberries ~ tricks of the nursery
  8. Blackberries ~ a remarkable Coincidence
  9. The garden ~ female management ~ comforts and profits
  10. Cheated in a cow ~ a good and a bad one ~ the saint of the barnyard
  11. A cloud of weeds ~ great sales of plants
  12. Pigs and poultry ~ luck and ill luck
  13. City and country life contrasted
  14. Two acres in truck ~ revolution in agriculture
  15. Birds and the services they render
  16. Close of my first Year ~ its loss and gain
  17. My second year ~ trenching the garden ~ strawberry profits
  18. raspberries ~ The Lawtons
  19. Liquid manures ~ an illustration
  20. My third year ~ liquid manure ~ three years’ results
  21. A barnyard manufactory ~ land Enough ~ faith in manure
  22. Profits of fruit-growing ~ the trade in berries
  23. Gentleman farming ~ establishing a Home
  24. Unsuccessful men ~ rebellion not ruinous to northern agriculture
  25. Where to locate – East or West

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