Agriculture

I used to raise cattle for slaughter. Now I refuse to eat meat.
I used to raise cattle for slaughter. Now I refuse to eat meat.
Once a holistic rancher, Laura Jean Schneider reflects on her decision to abandon the industry.
A family held their relatives captive; a community set them free
A family held their relatives captive; a community set them free
A labor trafficking case shows Westerners can sometimes still count on each other to protect those in need.
How beef colonized the West and America’s dinner plate
How beef colonized the West and America’s dinner plate
The author of a new book explains how beef consolidation in the late 19th Century shapes our ecology, economy and politics.
Rebels with a lost cause
Rebels with a lost cause
The fiercely conservative lawyers of the Sagebrush Rebellion continue to fight against environmental regulations, but despite all their sound and fury, very little has changed on the public lands.
The case for filet of filly
Americans may be sentimental about their horses, but slaughtering unwanted animals with poison is more cruel and a lot less sensible than using them for horsemeat.
A quest for the world’s finest pinot noir
Brian Doyle’s new book, The Grail, lives up to its lively subtitle as it describes “a year ambling and shambling through an Oregon vineyard in pursuit of the best pinot noir in the whole wild world.”
The Efficiency Paradox
Water efficiency has long been touted as a silver bullet for the West’s water problems, but too much efficiency can cause problems of its own, especially in the fragile Colorado River Delta.
A harvest cornucopia hangs on in New Mexico
The writer celebrates the harvest and community supported agriculture
How to save a creek... one drop at a time
A detailed map shows the work being done on Oregon’s Whychus Creek to restore instream flows with the cooperation of local farmers
Dust in the wind
In his new book, The Worst Hard Time, Tim Egan interviews survivors to tell the story of the great American Dust Bowl on the southern Great Plains in the 1930s
A world built on groundwater
In Ogallala Blue: Water and Life on the Great Plains, William Ashworth examines the effects of groundwater dependency in a dry land
Don't top that tree!
The writer figures out why so many people "top" trees instead of pruning them
Finding hope in a new land
Farmworker’s Daughter: Growing Up Mexican in America is the story of Rose Castillo Guilbault’s childhood journey from Mexico’s Sonoran Desert to a new life in California’s Salinas Valley
Hope
After 16 years of living in the shadows in Pasco, Wash., Wendy and Erendira Santana finally win legal residency
Corn ethanol isn't all it's cracked up to be
The writer likes ethanol, but not when it's made with corn
Organics and biofuels bring independence
More Montana farmers are starting to raise oilseed crops and produce their own biofuels to save on energy costs
In the orchards, questions about immigration reform
In Yakima County, Wash., the California-based labor contractor Global Horizons is stirring up controversy among local Latino farmworkers by bringing in hundreds of guest workers from Thailand to pick fruit
Aliens in the Backyard: Plant and Animal Imports to America
John Leland’s book, Aliens in the Backyard, discusses both the dangers and the benefits arising from the vast number of exotic species in North America – including human beings
Our mini-farm is probably someone else’s real thing
The writer lives near Olympia, Washington, on a mini-farm her neighbor probably thinks is the real thing
Idaho gets smart about water
Idaho is weathering the drought by taking a new, scientific approach to managing water use among its farmers
The public pays to keep water in a river
Three important "takings" lawsuits claim farmers should be compensated when water is withheld from irrigators in order to help endangered species during times of drought
Bees don't grow on trees
Honeybees are in trouble, and so are the farmers who depend on them for pollination, especially in California’s almond orchards
California's farmers ditch dirty diesel pumps
California’s two largest utility companies are encouraging farmers to switch from polluting diesel irrigation pumps to electric ones
High Country News Classifieds