Sunday 22 April 2018


2018 0422 16  Louis Bromfield: Malabar Farm1: Return of the Native

Malabar Farm - Pleasant Valley

Louis Bromfield at his home office
The threat of war in Europe and Louis Bromfield's own desire to return to the land of his youth prompted him to purchase three exhausted farms here in Pleasant Valley in 1939. He named the estate Malabar Farm after the Malabar Coast of India, the setting of his 1937 book The Rains Came.

Bromfield then set about to restore the land, putting into practice soil and water conservation techniques that later became widely influential. Devoted to educating farmers and the public about soil and water conservation, Bromfield hosted thousands of visitors at Malabar and expounded his ideas in speeches, columns, and over the radio.

He also continued to write books, turning to non-fiction to share his experiences. Among these are Malabar Farm (1948) and Out of the Earth (1950). Bromfield died in 1956 and in the following years Malabar passed out of family ownership. Malabar Farm became a state park in 1976, demonstrating techniques that Bromfield put into practice

Kirkus review states that "Malabar Farm" is a sequel to "Pleasant Valley", in the further record of Malabar, where the experiment in soil reclamation is bearing fruit. It is not so consistently entertaining reading as the earlier book, though there are chapters with the same contagious feel of the countryside, his fresh enthusiasm for the progressive ideas he is putting into practice, the animals of the farm and house, the neighbors, the guests. 

Much of the text is intended for the practical agriculturist, and is pretty scientific for the layman. A challenge to our national waste and ignorance as to our real wealth- a warning that we look well before we give too lavishly- a conclusive argument in favor of modern methods increasing production, with plenty for all and farming as a profitable way of life, as the goal.


YouTube Video: Louis Bromfield "The Man Who Had Everything": [Click Here]




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