Listen free for 30 days

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

Gabe Brown didn’t set out to change the world when he first started working alongside his father-in-law on the family farm in North Dakota. But as a series of weather-related crop disasters put Brown and his wife, Shelly, in desperate financial straits, they started making bold changes to their farm. 

Brown - in an effort to simply survive - began experimenting with new practices he’d learned about from reading and talking with innovative researchers and ranchers. As he and his family struggled to keep the farm viable, they found themselves on an amazing journey into a new type of farming: regenerative agriculture. Brown dropped the use of most of the herbicides, insecticides, and synthetic fertilizers that are a standard part of conventional agriculture. He switched to no-till planting, started planting diverse cover crops mixes, and changed his grazing practices. In doing so, Brown transformed a degraded farm ecosystem into one full of life - starting with the soil and working his way up, one plant and one animal at a time. 

In Dirt to Soil, Gabe Brown tells the story of that amazing journey and offers a wealth of innovative solutions to our most pressing and complex contemporary agricultural challenge - restoring the soil. The Brown’s Ranch model, developed over 20 years of experimentation and refinement, focuses on regenerating resources by continuously enhancing the living biology in the soil. 

Using regenerative agricultural principles, Brown’s 5,000-acre ranch has grown several inches of new topsoil in only 20 years! The key is how we think, Brown says. In the industrial agricultural model, all thoughts are focused on killing things. But that mind-set was also killing diversity, soil, and profit, Brown realized. Now, he channels his creative thinking toward how he can get more life on the land - more plants, animals, and beneficial insects. 

“The greatest roadblock to solving a problem,” Brown says, “is the human mind."

©2018 Gabe Brown (P)2018 Chelsea Green Publishing

What listeners say about Dirt to Soil

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    121
  • 4 Stars
    9
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    85
  • 4 Stars
    19
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1
Story
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    103
  • 4 Stars
    6
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thought provoking and unexpectedly emotional

As a farmer I found this book challenging but inspirating and emotional as I reflect how the Gabe's early story reflects my early experiences of conventional farming.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A survival ESSENTIAL!

Gabe with his fresh eyes, fresh insight & razor sharp intellect & observations, shows the way not simply to “food” production, but way more important, nutrition production.
In doing so Gabe gives us back our sustainable world & balance of nature. This man & his family are modern day agricultural heroes. A must read & “digest” kinda book.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

outstanding

A wonderful audio book, that could help to save the Earth and our species, truly nspirational and illuminating

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Some reading for anyone who eats food

Some important information for anyone who values the quality of the food they consume or grow...

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A great sales pitch for regenerative Agriculture

Although imperfect on some of the scientific detail (the relevance of declining micro nutrient levels in foods and the existence of god) it really is a very good thought provoking listen on modern agriculture.
It is a must listen for all farmers and growers, a great starting point on the regenerative agriculture journey

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Exceptional

A exceptional insight into a family’s conversion to regenerative agriculture. A true farmers perspective. Highly recommended

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Enlightening overview of regenerative agriculture

Makes you wonder why everyone is not farming like this! We need to change our ways if we are going to have a good future as a species!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Inspiring

if more farmers nd consumers read this. The world would be a better place.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant.

I have read many books on regenerative agriculture, no till etc and this one still opened my eyes. Really enjoyable read and very interesting. Highly recommend. Thanks Gabe!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent book

Informative and inspiring. I am just starting out in agriculture and I intend to carry this with me.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 29-01-19

loved it.

I hope every farmer, gardener and lawmaker reads it. I think it should probably be required reading in every conservation and agricultural course.
I am almost done listening to it for the 4th time. Gabe Brown should be nominated for Person of the Year on Time Magazine!

7 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amazon Customer
  • Amazon Customer
  • 17-08-19

Happy to hear someone is doing something

The author is the narrator, he has and accent and unusual reading style. To be honest I almost stopped listening in the first few minutes. I'm glad that I didnt. If your interested in farming with the help of nature instead of against it, you need to listen to what this man has to teach you!

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for david
  • david
  • 25-05-19

Good knowledge

I think this book gives good knowledge from his experience. It is very motivating. It does NOT give you the formula for you to do it though, you need to research afterwards. That is why I gave it 4 stars.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Layne
  • Layne
  • 30-10-19

Everyone should know this information

This book can and will actually change your life if you take action with the practices described. I have been doing regenerative agriculture for 7 years and can see major changes in soil health.
I have been to the authors ranch and met him. The information is legitimate and the authenticity is real. What a great book!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for lizardWV
  • lizardWV
  • 20-06-19

Inspiring

If you’re looking for a different (better) way to do things this may be your saving grace. If someone is telling you there is only one way to do something and all the while they are profiting from you doing it that way, chances are they are either lying to you or are uninformed about alternatives. There is more than one way to skin a cat, and if you look hard enough you’ll find in most cases the “cat” didn’t need to be skinned in the first place.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Anonymous User
  • Anonymous User
  • 30-01-19

informative and to-the-point!

I enjoyed listening to this book and my version is full of bookmarks. Thanks Gabe Bown!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Patti Armbrister
  • Patti Armbrister
  • 28-10-19

Must read if you grow food!

Dirt to Soil is a book every farmer, ranchers, grower, gardener, extension agent and NRCS employee should read. In fact if you eat food you should read this book. You will gain a better understanding of food and nutrition. Plus gain a much larger respect for agriculture and the soil microbes that you and your health is dependent upon if you eat food! I teach school and believe that the book should be getting read in middle school so all students can gain knowledge about the future of agriculture and our food production system.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for option31AW
  • option31AW
  • 07-12-18

Full of real and practical ideas.

Beyond a doubt the best book I have read/listened to. Real ideas that are of great help no matter where you live. It is not a technical scrib, it lays it all out in simple terms. Several changes I am going to make spring 2019, buy a soil temperature meter, mix a more diverse cover crop get soil tests that include carbon amounts in soil.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jason Roberts
  • Jason Roberts
  • 21-11-20

Going for it

I am a fifth generation farmer in New Mexico and I am going for it. Mainly a cattle operation with grazing. Can’t wait to go on this adventure

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for andrew
  • andrew
  • 17-10-19

Great book for large scale AG

Not many people are able to talk to the subject of large scale agriculture. Gave had done an excellent job of it! I like that he read it too.

1 person found this helpful