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Inside the 2011 Farmers’ Almanac

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Published every year since 1818, the Farmers’ Almanac is the go-to source for inspirational and useful tips. Time tested and generation approved, each edition of the Farmers’ Almanac is a compendium of knowledge on weather, gardening, cooking, remedies, managing your household, preserving the earth and more.

The 2011 Farmers’ Almanac has answers to questions such as:

  • How many blizzards will we have this year?
  • How cold will this winter get?
  • When will the first snow fall?
  • Will there be a white Christmas?
  • What is a must-do on April 10, 2011?
  • When will the moon be full next June?

And much, MUCH more.

The 194th edition of the Farmers’ Almanac not only contains amazingly accurate long-range weather forecasts, gardening calendars, fishing dates, full moon and eclipse dates, but also stories on ways to “Grow Your Life.”

Here’s a quick look at some of our favorite stories from this year’s newest edition:

Ten WORST Winter & Summer Weather Cities.
Ever wonder what city in the USA has the most unbearable winter and summer weather conditions? In the 2002 Farmers’ Almanac, we published our picks for the 10 best and 10 worst weather cities. This year we’re doing it again, but with a twist–we are looking at which cities have the worst winter weather and which have the worst summer weather. Check out which cities made the list and why . . . turn to page 16.

What do Colors Mean?
Do you know what color is supposed to make babies cry more and induce more loss of tempers? Colors have many meanings to many people. Throughout history the meaning of colors has changed but many hold the following beliefs about the meanings of colors. Find out what these beliefs are on page 38.

Going, going, GONE . . .Remembering the Necessary Gadgets of Yesterday.
By Judy Kneiszel
Remember eight track tapes? Rotary dial phones? Film?! Look around any basement, attic, garage, or flea market and you’re sure to find a variety of obsolete or nearly obsolete items–items we once thought we could never live without!

Technological advances, from cell phone applications to MP3s, have clearly changed how we communicate. And lifestyle changes have affected the day-to-day running of the household and put many once-common items on the road to obsolescence. Check out our list of once-ubiquitous items that, while they may still be in use and even available brand new, have seen their glory days come and go . . . turn to page 40.(Let us know what you would add to the list too.)

Who Invited You? Invasive Bugs That Have Made Your Home Theirs.
By Amy Grisak
Got visitors of the creepy, crawly kind? Most of us welcome guests with open arms, unless of course, they bring hundreds of cousins, make messes in the house, or destroy the garden. Then we just want to know who invited them and how to send them on their way. Check out our list of invasive and annoying bugs who have made our homes theirs and gain some tips on ways to help kick them out. Page 52.

Easy Ways to Save Money While Remodeling.
By Lowell and Deborah Tukua.
Before you start a project, there are some steps you should take to make sure you don’t overspend or underbudget. Prepare a cost sheet or contact a licensed contractor to prepare an estimate for the renovation or new addition. If the costs associated with your planned project exceed your budget, what should you do? Forget the project, or consider where you can make cutbacks that will not compromise the integrity of the project. Check out this valuable list of good things to consider when making this decision . . . page 48.

Weird Presidential Trivia.
By Dondra Vaughn.
What did Abraham Lincoln hide in his big top hat? What U.S. president was a former fashion model? Who had an electric horse in the White House? Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction. Find the answers and more weird trivia about our presidents on page 57.

Bird Feeding and Watching Tips.
By Glenn Morris.
Can you identify this friendly-feathered animal? Do you enjoy watching bird antics from your window? This article shares tips on what to feed, attract, and identify some fabulously fun feathered friends. Page 70.

10 EASY Ways to Boost Your Immune System.
By Deborah Tukua.
Sending your children to school, stepping inside the local gym, or even putting your hands on a grocery store cart can compromise your health. Risks of bacteria, toxins, flu viruses and colds, with fevers, throat infections, and coughs abound. There are preventative measures we can take to strengthen our body’s natural defenses against attack. Putting these wellness tips into practice will help boost your body’s immune system and decrease your vulnerability to sickness. Check out these 10 easy ways to a healthier you on page 76.

Amazing Healing Foods.
Dr Lisa Belisle shares some valuable tips on what to eat and stay clear of if you suffer from arthritis and other inflammatory diseases. Be sure to turn to page 82 and learn what foods we all could benefit from eating.

Friendships That Stand the Test of Time.
Read about one friendship that has lasted more than six decades. Share your Friends for Life story and help the Farmers’ Almanac celebrate friendships during 2011. Read the full story here.

Dehydrators and Smokers . . . Why Are They So Popular?
Freelance author Jim Kneiszel shares some insight on the growing popularity of slowing down the process of food preservation and preparation. Learn a little more about both dehydration and smoking processes. Check out page 166.

5 Gardening Trends for 2011 and Beyond
By Andrew Odom.
As more than 50% of Americans are now living in urban environments, there is a fear that gardening will no longer be relevant, especially to people under 35 years of age, who want it all and want it in less than 30 seconds. But if the following trends are nothing else, they are encouragement for all gardeners. Here are five emerging trends that are growing wildly in the gardening arena . . . page 178.

6 Must-Plant Perennials
By Glenn Morris.
Many of us want perennials in our gardens that look like they do in the nursery (or catalog) and then grow bigger and better and, if fragrant, smell sweeter, year after year. Perennials carry the color scheme and theme of a garden border, because they return from a period of dormancy to repeat their cycle of bloom. Their hardiness and reliability are essential. Here is a chart of six garden stalwarts out of the bazillions of possibilities out there in the ornamental horticulture world. Page 182.

If you notice a hole in the upper left-hand corner of your Farmers' Almanac, don't return it to the store! That hole isn't a defect; it's a part of history. Starting with the first edition of the Farmers' Almanac in 1818, readers used to nail holes into the corners to hang it up in their homes, barns, and outhouses (to provide both reading material and toilet paper). In 1919, the Almanac's publishers began pre-drilling holes in the corners to make it even easier for readers to keep all of that invaluable information (and paper) handy.

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