This is Josh Volk’s first book and it builds on writing about farming that he’s done on his own website, for Growing for Market, and for other farming publications.

Here’s what others are saying:

A trove of inspiration and practical advise for the next wave of young farmers; even experienced farmers will glean new wisdom.

Lindsey Lusher Shute, National Young Farmer’s Coalition executive director and co-founder


A must-read for anyone serious about making it work on a small plot of land.

Richard McCarthy, Slow Food USA executive director


Wow! what an awesome, awesome book this is.  Compact Farms is a small-scale farming book like no other.

Most how-to farming books will discuss the biology, management and/or tool part of growing veggies, but fail to acknowledge the importance of the farm’s overall set-up. This is where the book breaks new ground. 

By exposing the farm layout of different (successful) operations and describing how these influences productivity and efficiency, Volk is providing our small-scale farming community with great new insights about scale, design and patterning. 

He’s also proving, one more time,  that a farm doesn’t need to be big to be profitable.  As we try to change the food system, more people need to understand that scaling-up operations is not the only game out there. The stories and farm features in this book explain how small can be profitable…when well done.   

Not overly complicated, fun to read  and beautifully illustrated, Compact Farms is a gem. I recommend more than reading it, I would invite growers (especially young ones) to study it well. Figure out the common « patterns » from each of these successful farms and emulate these, it’ll surely bring you where you wanna go, but faster. 

JM Fortier, Organic grower and author of The Market Gardener