Recommended Books

Passive Solar House Basics

Peter van Dresser. Ancient City Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1995.

This book is an overview of basic passive solar info, offering designs and illustrations to explain passive solar home building concepts. Topics include passive heating, venting and cooling, as well as simple designs for solar water heaters and solar dehydrators. Also, passive solar house plans for a core house show how one can build comfortably in stages and can incorporate greenhouses, clerestory windows and direct gain windows to decrease long term heating needs.

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Wells and Septic Systems

Max & Charlotte Alth. McGraw Hill, New York, 1992.

This book provides information for homebuilders who want to install their own septic system or well. The authors discuss several methods for digging your own well, as well as materials and equipment that you will need. It covers the basics on perc testing and overviews the process of putting in a septic system in from start to finish.

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Adobe and Rammed Earth Buildings

Paul Graham McHenry, Jr. The University of Arizona Press, Tuscon, Arizona, 1984.

If you want to build your own adobe house this book will provide you with detailed information on selecting soil and manufacturing your own adobe bricks. Many aspects of adobe home building are covered including appropriate foundation and roofing procedures, as well as methods for finishing earth walls. Though this book won't show how to build a rammed earth house, it does offer valuable information on a variety of earth building methods and includes details for building a rammed earth wall.

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Build it with Bales Version 2

Matts Myhrman & S. O. MacDonald. Treasure Chest Books, 1998.

A Step-by-Step Guide to Staw Bale Construction - Originally published by Out on Bale, strawbale building techniques are clearly illustrated, while practical and humorous descriptions make this book a gem. Methods for constructing straw bale houses are explained for the beginner in understandable terms. This version of the book leads the builder from design to completion, making this book ideal for those who want to build their own strawbale houses.

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Medicinal Plants of the Mountain West

Michael Moore. Museum of New Mexico Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 2003.

This in-depth guide to identifying medicinal plants features illustrations for over one hundred species native to the western mountain region of the U.S. Michael Moore, a leader in the modern herbal medicine movement also offers details for preparing, preserving and using natural medicine. This guide includes full color photos of many of the plants, which is particularly helpful for herb identification.

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Medicinal Plants of the Desert and Canyon West

Michael Moore. Museum of New Mexico Press, Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1990.

In this guide to identifying medicinal desert plants, Michael Moore includes detailed illustrations of each plant featured. He shares information on the preparation and use of herbal remedies created from plants found in American canyons and deserts. This book discusses each plant in great detail, covering techniques for harvesting and preserving numerous desert herbs. Full color photos provided for many of the plants aid in identification.

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