The Survival Garden: How To Start And What To Prep.

Discussion in 'Gardening' started by DirtDiva, Aug 30, 2021.

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  1. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    I will admit I have never made blackberry moonshine. I always have an endless supply of blackberries it seems. My family enjoys blackberry cobbler and blackberry pie. I have also made blackberry wine which is great. Blackberry brandy is also to die for.
     
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  2. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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  3. Lee CT NE

    Lee CT NE Expert Member
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    Thanks for the info. I wondered about this.
     
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  4. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    [​IMG]

    Never waste a resource! The leaves continue to fall and have been keeping us busy. We run a mower over them to chop them up and bag. They become the cornerstone of compost piles built in the beds and boxes around the property. These are dampened down and additions made of animal bedding from my small flock of chickens or ducks and kitchen scraps, newspaper, cardboard etc. They remain covered all winter with inexpensive blue tarps to hold the heat in. They average about 3 X 3 in size and by spring will be rotted completely down. We have had a couple days of 60 degree weather and we have turned them when the weather allows. In early spring I will spread them out on the top of the bed and maybe fork into the existing soil just a bit. This is why I like the wooden kick plated on my beds to hold that compost in as it has a tendency to was in rain storms without it.
     
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  5. Dalewick

    Dalewick Legendary Survivalist
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    DirtDiva, do you add anything to your compost (micorizia, red wigglers, etc.) to get a faster break down?

    Dale
     
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  6. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    The worms tend to come on their own once the pile cools down. Sometimes I add soybean meal as a green (nitrogen addition) to heat it up in the beginning. I continue to add in a small amount of bedding straw for the chicken or duck manure to again help keep it hot. Also my husband pees on it if he is out and about. It helps satisfy his masculine urge to pee on stuff outside and again helps to heat the pile up! MEN :rolleyes:

    I keep it covered to hold in the heat and prevent all the winter rain from leaching out the nutrients.
     
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  7. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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  8. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    A New Year In The Garden...2022

    Been an interesting winter with lots of snow for my area and lots of cold temps. Estimated last frost date April 15. Which mean 8 weeks till possibly last frost. I see small signs of spring emerging with a few buds swelling and bulbs emerging. The first to bloom will be the forsythia bushes and early daffodils.

    Time to plant green peas or English peas as many call them. Remember that they can germinate in soils as cold as 40 degrees.

    Time to start your earliest crops from seeds for seedlings. Broccoli, cabbage, bulb onions for me. A little later I will direct sow green or spring onions, mustard greens and beets for pickling and greens.

    I have already started my sweet potato sets by placing a couple sweet potatoes in water to sprout which I will then root in water to later set in beds which I will prepare soon. They will not be set out until May.

    [​IMG]

    I plant my potatoes, onion sets and such on St. Patrick's Day. Line those up now for those of you that have not as supplies will be limited.

    We had a couple warm days last week and cleaned the asparagus beds of any weeds so I can see any spears emerging later in the season. Pulled some winter weeds and checked on and turned my overwintering compost piles. It was good to get out in the sunshine for a bit again.

    Again taking advantage of the warm weather window Mr. DD and I pruned blueberries, peach trees, plum trees, black currants, pear trees, Nanking cherries and stuck out an additional 12 black currant cuttings to root. The spring spraying season is just aroud the corner. The only thing I really spray is the peach trees and grapes. Looks like the new dozen blackberry bushes I set out against the back perimeter fence all made it so far. I still need to separate the rhubarb crowns as they are getting too crowded and I have new strawberry plants on order to replace 3 year old plants. I like to replace strawberry plants every 3 years because of disease.

    Other than that you can find me under the quilt frame enjoying a long winter gardening break.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2022
  9. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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  10. TexDanm

    TexDanm Shadow Dancer
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    When it comes to a survival garden I much prefer the root crops. Thieves will rob you of the things that they recognise as being food crops but most of them probably will not recognise what the above ground part of a root plant looks like. Add to that the nutrisional value of potatoes, sweet potatoes, and yams and they are just too good to not have.

    People are going to start starving in a hurry. Most people that are not survival based probably don't have even a weeks worth of food in their home. Hell, most people these days don't cook past sticking something in a microwave.

    On another note a BB gun is a wonderful pot meal getter. You can always get a couple of birds where I live. They are not used to being hunted and are easy targets. a BB gun doesn't advise everyone in the area that you have supper got and heading to the pot.
     
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    1. arctic bill
      I agree with root crops , you can leave them in the ground and harvest when ever you want, but other crop if not harvested at just the right time become woody and go to seed.
       
      arctic bill, Mar 19, 2022
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  11. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Legendary Survivalist
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    Gardening is quite popular in America. One-third of Americans are growing their own fruits and veggies. One big motivating factor for the increasing gardening was the covid epidemic when folks saw all of the shortages at groceries and really weren't keen on shopping in the first place. Most of the 2/3 of Americans who do not grow gardens are urban dwellers and have little land if any to garden. Some folk grow plants in the window boxes of their apartments, but that's not feeding anyone.

    https://coopeduplife.com/vegetable-garden-statistics/

    https://www.studyfinds.org/growing-own-fruit-vegetables-gardens-food-bills/

    https://vegconomist.com/studies-and...ables-for-the-first-time-due-to-the-pandemic/

    ================================

    God government grabs garden.

    And the Government spake and vouchsafed not Liberty but chains upon the husbandman, saying, “That which thou dost deemeth thine own, verily such is not, but is to the collective vouchsafed. Tarry not therein, for all that thou dost call thine is indeed Mine. Kneel and know thy station before Me.”

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/ar...ple-nearly-500-growing-vegetables-garden.html

    "A green-fingered couple who turned to self-sufficiency during lockdown have accused council bosses of losing the plot after they told them they would have to fork out almost £500 to keep growing vegetables in their own garden.

    "Amateur growers Lee and Kirstie Lawes decided to transform part of their lawn into a vegetable patch as a lockdown hobby - one they could enjoy with their two-year-old granddaughter Ella.

    "The pair, from Deeping St James, Lincs, were so successful with their growing that they even started handed out their produce among neighbours.

    "But their well-meaning pandemic project, which has shades of Tom and Barbara Good in the hit BBC comedy series The Good Life, may now have to be uprooted.

    "That's because council chiefs say installing the vegetable patch has resulted in a 'change of use' of the land.

    "Despite them owning the small piece of land, it has never previously been fenced off and has been open to members of the public.

    "Dad-of-four Lee, 53, who runs his own fire and security business, says Land Registry records show the small patch of grass been part of the property since 1969.

    "But according to the South Kesteven District Council the green area is classed in planning terms as 'informal open space'. The authority say by fencing the area off and growing vegetables they have officially changed its use - meaning they need to submit a 'change of use' planning application.

    "Now the local council wants to charge the couple £469 for the planning permission, leaving the couple baffled."
    .
     
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    1. TMT Tactical
      Just one more example of government wanting to dip their paws into somebodies wallet.
       
      TMT Tactical, Feb 17, 2022
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  12. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    There was an upsurge in people gardening in Britain during the pandemic, a similar upsurge happened in pet ownership but both will decrease again now that everyone is going back to work.
     
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  13. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    its "change of use" as defined by planning laws, like changing office space to residential. a planning application is required.
     
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  14. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    I sadly agree Lonewolf and there has also been a huge upsurge of home gardeners in the US as well as an interest in canning and food preservation of all kinds. The results of this upsurge are shortages in seeds, soils and amendments, fertilizers, fruit trees and grafting scions and pesticides and fungal sprays. I think that once the panic dies down if it ever does this will decrease because people will realize that this producing your own food stuff is hard work and many will become bored with it or just unable or unwilling to put in the time. They always do. I watched the same after the back to the land movement of the 70's and the Y2K scare at the turn of the century.

    Before moving to the landholding I now live on I lived in the state of Missouri. My husband and I lived on 72 acres in a very remote location. we were surrounded by megafarms where the small farms had all been bought up and combined destroying the century old farming communities of the area. There was some of the richest soil there I have ever seen. Breadbasket bottomland that feeds the world.

    Yet in the small town not far from our property they regularly brought in produce that I considered rotten it was such poor quality to pass out to the people of the community. Yet my husband and I offered free food to the poor all they had to do was come pick it. Very few did. Many of these people lived with lush lawns and rich soil but lacked the knowledge and know how to use it. They also lacked the knowledge or desire to preserve food. In less that a generation the farming communities lost their ability to garden or farm or preserve their own food. Yet my husband and I produced more food and fruit than we could ever eat or feed our 5 kids and the livestock our property fed. We sold our reserves that were purchased by fruit vendors and carted to the big cities and sold as organic produce for top dollar.

    So many skills have been lost. So a positive result of this pandemic (MAYBE) is hopefully a renewal of interest in those old skills.
     
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  15. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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  16. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Zone 6B/7A average last frost date April 15 so I am about 6 weeks out. Planted this week cool weather early spring crops of green peas, mustard greens , turnips, beets, green (spring) onions, carrots, spinach. Seedlings already started cabbage, broccoli and lettuce. First potato patch planted, bulb onion sets of Vidalia and Spanish Sweet onions to go into ground today. Sweet potato slips sprouted and ready to root.

    Layer of compost applied to the 2 large asparagus patches and digging and thinning rhubarb crowns. Fruit trees pruned and soon will apply dormant oil spray. Cornelian cherry and Nanking cherry both have blooms. Lots of buds swelling.

    With the state of the world another big garden going in.
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2022
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  17. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    My zone as we have already discovered is also floating near the border of zones 6 and 7 . Likewise I have also planted my spinach . One of my problems has been growing okra . About the time it gets to producing good the fall frost hits it and kills it back . This year I am pursuing a different tactic . I have already started my okra in small containers indoors in an attempt to get a early start and extend the harvesting season . --- I got out with my chain saw this winter and cleared timber and expanded my garden . This I done even before the economy took even a more dire turn . I operate often on shear instinct .--- A question , what is the function of dormant oil spray on fruit trees ?
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2022
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  18. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Many insects aphids and such lay eggs on the trees that overwinter on the bark and stems. Dormant oil spray is a horticultural oil that is sprayed on vegetation while dormant to smother any overwintering pest or eggs prior to bud break.

    I struggle with okra some years myself. Try putting a wire ring around the small okra and wrapping in clear plastic to hold in additional heat and possibly faster growth.
     
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  19. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    A few days ago , my daughter asked me " what they could do to survive a potential World War 3 ". My answer " grow a bigger garden " . I just returned from her house . They are using heavy equipment to expand their garden . Like me they choose to establish their garden on the edge of a mountain cliff that we share . The infinity of space from the cliff faces the path of the sun , giving the gardens the benefit of longer hours of sun . --- They managed to purchase their seeds for the year also today .
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2022
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  20. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    My husband and I were in town Friday and we checked out the seed display at Walmart. My husband absolutely could not believe the prices on those small packets of seeds. He is spoiled because I rarely buy seeds myself anymore. I am glad your daughter was able to get her seeds early.
     
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  21. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    I also try to save seeds and avoid buying seeds . This I do primarily in preparation for a complete societal collapse . It wouldn't surprise me at all that buying anything will be a no go before the end of the year 2022 .
     
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  22. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    You could be right. I noticed Friday there were a lot of blank spots on store shelves. I did find canning jar lids which surprised me. I personally bought additional commercial garden fertilizer, some seed starter potting mix bales, peat moss, wheat straw for animal bedding and mulch, additional stores of livestock feed chicken scratch grain, corn, dog food etc. and fence wire. Everything I bought had went up in price. Like you I have a feeling it is just the beginning. Gas on the way home was $4.00 a gallon. I won't be making many trips and will consolidate trips.
     
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  23. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    no shortages here as yet.
     
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  24. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    As of this morning we sit on the verge of a possible World War 3 . Ater the Nukes are released it will be too late to discuss the following line of thought . I don't know which or how many members reside outside of the immediate blast areas . If you don't know you can find the target map on Google . LoneWolf and I , live outside the target areas . The result being the survivors may have to concentrate on growing plants suitable for the nuclear winter years . --- That brings me to my line of reasoning . Which plants would be good to grow for the cloudy and cooler conditions ? Do you have your seeds on hand for the after Nuked life style ? Spinach and Mustard green seeds I have on hand that might thrive under such conditions . Perhaps some might have suggestions for other garden plants .
     
    Last edited: Mar 13, 2022
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  25. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    I think Dirtdiva would be the one to ask, I have my heritage seeds put back for this, but generally if we are talking cloudy and cooler conditions we may need to concentrate on those plants which grow over here in the winter months, stuff like brussel sprouts and similar winter veg.
     
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  26. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Lonewolf is indeed correct in that the best choices would be your cooler weather crops many of which can be shade tolerant to an extent. Spinach, kale, mustard and turnip. cabbage, bokchoys, lettuces, beets, possibly potatoes would like the cooler temps but not as shade tolerant, green peas, green or spring onions. I would store lots of seeds for sprouting, bean and grain seeds mostly. The great thing about many of these crops is that the seeds will sprout in soils as cool as 40 degrees.

    We can struggle here on the upper plateau with cooler summer temps. We may reach 90 degrees a hand full of days in the summer. Heat loving crops tend to grow slower and take longer to grow, ripen and produce than in the lower elevations. On the flip side I can grow cool season crops almost all season without bolting.
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2022
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  27. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    There are ways to also hold heat for your plants such as cloches and milk jugs.

    Here is a link to garden cones made with clear roll fiberglass with instructions.
    http://thecluelessgardeners.blogspot.com/2010/03/solar-cone-project-how-to.html

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The same could be done with wire rings and plastic attached.

    There are also tricks for locations to plant heat loving plants. For an example I plant my figs on the south sides of my cinder block pump shed. The walls are painted white and store and reflect heat helping to keep my heat loving figs happy in an otherwise less than perfect growing environment.

    Large rocks placed around the base of plants can also store heat.

    My bell peppers love being planted along my concrete sidewalks it helps to keep them toasty and warm.

    Try planting a box of potatoes and then placing some stakes on the south side of the row or box. Attach a sheet of clear corrugated fiberglass to the stakes. The fiberglass will amplify that south sun and creat a heat sink behind it for the potatoes or any crop really.

    PM[/GALLERY] potato patch - Copy.jpg
     
    Last edited: Mar 14, 2022
  28. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    While I have had very little luck myself with Irish potato towers this sweet potato tower seems to work. The black plastic garbage bags help to hold in the heat which sweet potatoes like. I line my sweet potato rings with just heavy duty black garbage bags. With this I get a much larger crop of heat loving sweet potatoes than just growing in my rocky soil. And don't forget those new leaves are edible.

     
  29. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Also for holding in heat do not forget row covers and cold frames both work well. You can find more info on both in the posts above that I have alredy posted.

    Hope this helps!
    DD
     
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  30. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    old tyres hold the heat well, I've used tyre towers (3 high) for growing potatoes and always had good results with no blight or other diseases, single tyres work well for shallower rooted plants.
    they may not look pretty but work well.
     
  31. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    I have seen gardeners use old tires with some success for other things. In the southern U.S. we have fire ants. Invasive. difficult to eradicate and very painful bites. Tires provide perfect homes fot these ants where they make huge anthills within them. The same problem with railroad cross ties.
     
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  32. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    that sounds like that problem is specific to that region, we dont get those here, the main problem is slugs here.
     
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  33. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    You are correct although I did see some research recently to indicate that fire ants are creeping northward for the time being they remain below the Mason Dixon line. This restricts them to the southern U.S. states. Where I grew up in Louisiana they were really bad.

    Where I live now I also struggle with slugs. One of the greatest things I have ever done was to get ducks and allow them to free range. They live for slugs and eat everyone they find.
     
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  34. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    A point I want to make here on this discussion topic of gardening during a nuclear winter type situation with lower sunlight levels and cooler temperatures. To the best of my knowledge there is not much information out there or studies on this subject. I was reading an article the other day that I will see if I can locate about a horticultural scientist that has returned to the Chernobyl site every year monitoring the gardens and plant growth on site. To the best of my knowledge I have not located any published studies though. That being said......

    In that situation you as gardeners would have to add additional growing time to crops to account for slower growth. As an example a lettuce that would mature in 30 days would possibly take twice that time to mature due to slower growth from shade and cooler temps. My guess is that germination would also take longer due to the soil not warming as fast in spring. With germinating on heating mats and cold frames you could possibly get around that. Cloches would also help. In any case I think you would have to factor longer maturity dates into your vegetable rotations. This at a time when production could be critical to survival for some.

    Just an educated guess I am throwing out there!
     
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  35. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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  36. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Here is a fascinating but also terrifying read on Nuclear winter/autumn

    http://sethbaum.com/ac/2015_Deterrence.pdf

    a few excerpts that pertain to the agricultural side of it:

     
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  37. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    This is a video on gardening after the Nukes have fallen . I am not sure if the guy making the video knows what he is talking about or not , but can say it makes sense to me . This is a must see especially for those that expect to survive the nuke blasts . He says you can scrape away and discard the top few inches of soil from your garden and grow food that is radiation free . -- My own thoughts on this is , if this is true "as preppers " have sheets of plastic handy to weight down over your garden as soon as the war starts and before fallout descends in your area to stop the radioactive particles from reaching and penetrating into your garden soil would be more desirable than scrapping away your garden's top soil . -- The plastic is one thing that I have not thought of to put in the stash . I will have to remedy that oversight . --- To my line of thought installing that plastic as soon as the earth begins to shake from the blasts would be priority number one , even before looking for shelter .
     
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  38. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    The most important word in that video : THEORY

    I would also use that plastic along with duct tape to seal all windows and doors within my home from outside air and contamination. Just saying!

    Clear plastic can also be handy when spread on a garden in the heat to solarize the soil below to kill weed seeds and the weeds themselves below the plastic. Builds up heat!

    The thing about this topic is that there is so little real info or research. Most Looks like to be based on Volcanic eruptions, modern nuclear accidents, a whole lot of guessing and conjecture. Personally may we be so lucky never to have to test their theories.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2022
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  39. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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  40. Old Geezer

    Old Geezer Legendary Survivalist
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    It may not take a nuclear war to start the cooling. We are at the end of an Earth heat cycle. What could come next is some serious cooling.

    http://myweb.wwu.edu/dbunny/pdfs/looming-threat-of-global-cooling.pdf

    http://www.columbia.edu/cu/record/archives/vol21/vol21_iss14/record2114.23.html

    Any scientist who dares question the Global Warming (now Global Change) dogma gets burned at the stake by the Archbishops of Politically-Correct Science (university professors). Question "Absolute Truth", poof!, your tenure gets negated. When working for universities, I can almost physically feel the "radiation" of political correctness. I was raised in a conservative church environment. Current screeching by "scientists" is far more shrill than with the Jesus freaks.

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    And then there are dry and wet cycles. Looks like N.America could be in for a drought that could damage farming in America's breadbasket states. East of the Mississippi, looks like same-old, same-old.

    "Spring Outlook: Drought to expand amid warmer conditions "

    https://www.noaa.gov/news/spring-outlook-drought-to-expand-amid-warmer-conditions

    upload_2022-3-19_20-12-45.png

    upload_2022-3-19_20-13-23.png
     
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  41. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Shopping for landscape plants – an illustrated cautionary tale

    This is the time of year in my area when winter gradually fades into spring. A fine veil crossed many times between warming sunny days and frosts. The time when gardeners hold their breaths waiting to see what mother nature damages with her late frosts. Every year we dance this dance but yet every year there is always enough for us anyway.

    This is also the time of year that people look to planting. New fruit trees and berry bushes and new landscaping items as well. Expanding orchards and backyard gardens alike. I found this article over at Garden Professors blog showing what not to buy at the local nursery or garden center. For anyone buying trees or bushes this is a must read!

    https://gardenprofessors.com/shopping-for-landscape-plants-an-illustrated-cautionary-tale/

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Mar 28, 2022
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  42. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    Vermicomposting or Worm Castings

    My husband and I live and garden on a piece of land with an abundance of oak and hickory trees of various species. That means that we have a large quantity of nuts to deal with but also leaves. For us we do not harvest the acorns but they cold be harvested and made into flour in a pinch. We rake them up and deposit them into the forest for the animals there so the mower won't throw them through a window.

    The hickory nuts are edible but the variety we have tends to be small. We also have pignuts which is a very small hickory nut. We do harvest the outer shells of the hickory nuts and save them. They are soaked in water and used in the smoke house and lend a wonderful hickory flavor to meats. The larger hickory nuts we crack and cook down shells and all in water and then strain. Sugar is added and then we again cook down to make a hickory syrup. My husband uses this to make a barbecue sauce that is amazing.

    The limbs that we cut off from time to time from the trees are used for smoking in the smoke house or in our fireplace. So the only thing remaining is the leaves in the fall. The leaves become part of a compost cycle and along with the trimmings from our gardens, lawns and the animal droppings become compost as well in piles that we turn most of the warm months. BUT we always save some leaves for a special reason. Every spring they become part of the food for the worm bed. In the spring we dig the soil out and run it through a sieve straining out the sticks and sprouted acorns.

    100_7411.JPG

    We use this metal box. I have no idea what it's original use was but it was left abandoned on the property when we purchased it. My husband drilled holes in the bottom and covered the bottom with screen wire. This allows the water to drain but the worms cannot escape. It is approximately 4 foot tall.

    Every spring we dig the worms and dirt out completely and refill with leaves that we have saved for this purpose as well as some dirt that we cleaned out of the chicken run. Sometimes if we have it a little straw animal bedding. We do not add much manure unless it is rabbit nor do we add any green stuff. We do not want this to generate heat but rather to break down slowly and naturally by time and the worms. Secluded in a shady corner of the property it sits all year.

    100_7416.JPG

    Then we shovel the remaining 18 inches out of the bottom of the box from last winter and run it over a wooden frame my husband built with wood and 1/2 inch rat wire. This is used to sieve the large stuff out remaining on top while the worm castings fall through into the wheelbarrow to be collected. We pick out the worms as we go. The large stuff remaining on top goes back into the bottom of the of the worm box to go through again.

    100_7419.JPG

    The worms were not purchased redworms but are rather a combination of native earth worms collected from our compost beds, and garden through the years including some redworms. And because our box is so deep even night crawlers live in the boxes. Each shovel full is gone through for worms before we sieve the castings. The worms are collected and placed in a bucket.

    100_7421.JPG

    And in the bottom of the wheelbarrow are the collected worm castings that fall through the sieve.

    100_7426.JPG

    At the end of the day a 55 gallon drum and 6 five gallon buckets of worm castings. This will be used to top dress plants in the garden and mixed with seed starter to pot the spring seedlings for the gardens. Best soil additive and conditioner ever. Free for the taking and saves me a ton in soil amendments. Some people make compost tea with it also. Expensive product to buy commercially.

    100_7429.JPG

    Part of the collected worms will be added to the refilled box to seed next springs worm harvest. The largest of the worms will be stored in a worm bin separately for catfishing throughout the summer to replenish the catfish fillets in my freezer every year. Along with these worms we also collect catalpa worms off the two catalpa trees which can be placed in corn meal and frozen then defrosted and the worms will still be alive. These also are a favorite catfish bait.

    There you go shade throughout the summer, firewood for smoking and heat through the winter, nuts for flour possibly and hickory syrup for pancakes and barbecue. Someone told me they used to collect the acorns to feed the pigs but not sure about that one? Leaves for compost and to feed to worm beds to provide bait for the summer fishing to replenish the fish in the freezer. And it saves me money buying potting soils in the spring. The only thing I haven't found a use for is the blooms. Only thing they are good for is to trigger my spring time allergies.

    No fancy worm bins to buy, no worms to buy and it remains outside in the yard all year round ( atleast here on my place it does). Nothing goes to waste. Anyone else raise worms?
     
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  43. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    Dirt Diva you must be a very busy person . My only worm raising is to throw stuff out occasionally in a particular spot to feed worms . Hopefully as soon as my pickup truck is out of the shop , plan to dig up some of those worms and take my grandson fishing .--- You and I may be the only two on this forum that occasionally smokes and cures meat the old way . I have a log and stone smoke house about 7 0r 8 ft. square with a dirt floor for building a smoldering fire for curing meat . We to use green hickory for smoking . If we have any others on this forum that cures meat the old way "speak up ". The ability to cure meat in this manner may be a skill that could mean the difference between starvation and survival , especially considering the current events now unfolding .
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2022
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    1. DirtDiva
      The shell crackers should be running here soon! Good eating :)
       
      DirtDiva, Mar 30, 2022
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    2. DirtDiva
      Love to see pics of your smoke house.
       
      DirtDiva, Mar 30, 2022
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  44. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    Salt and pepper , two of the most used spices for most people . I have salt in the stash . My research showed black pepper comes from warm climate regions thus would not grow in my area . Do any of our members have a suggestion for a black pepper substitute that could be grown in zones 6 or 7 ? -- I am just thinking if a nuke exchange , supply chain collapse , or the further worsening economic conditions brought on by the One World Globalist crowd should make obtaining black pepper difficult , it would be good to be able to simply go to the garden and pick a substitute . --- Already this year am adding garlic and Egyptian walking onions to my survival garden as those two species theoretically would reproduce itself and produce year after year . --- Spicing up food would make it much more appetizing .
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2022
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  45. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    --- I think I have found the answer to my above question . The solution , berries from the spice bush . Fortunately for me , when I built my survival retreat in the Ozark hills , I simply took my axe and carved out a spot in the woods . At that time I was too poor to own a chain saw , so I actually did clear the underbrush and timber with a axe . Then I hauled cinder blocks , sand that I dug up by a creek , 2 liter drink bottles of water and bags of mortar in a barrowed wheel barrow to my selected house site , mixed the mortar using a hoe and mixing it in plastic household containers and layed the blocks for my house foundation . Now on one side of my log sided house , I have a large spice bush that produces berries every year . On the other side of my house , I have sassafras trees that I harvest the leaves to dry and make file for gumbo . So this year my plan is to harvest the spice bush berries and try them as a black pepper substitute . --- From those humble beginnings me and my tribe have prospered to the point as I posted on this forum somewhere , that I recently bought my grandson an airplane and paid cash for it .
     
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2022
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  46. DirtDiva

    DirtDiva Master Survivalist
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    While I do stock both black and white peppercorns and a quality pepper grinder and a spare. Honestly though I have never harvested berries from the spice bush. You really don't see many in my area. I do grow garlic, chives, garlic chives, large beds of green onions every year that I both dehydrate and freeze. I also grow potato onions, Egyptian walking onions and also annual bulb onions. Because I cook predominantly from scratch I use large quantities of onions, garlic, celeriac and gather wild mushrooms sometimes. I dehydrate garlic and make my own garlic powder. In my garden there is dill, oregano, thyme, lemon balm, green peppers, hot peppers, mint, ginger and turmeric. I also grow mustard every year which can be allowed to go to seed for ground mustard. Every year I also ferment several gallons of apple cider vinegar from apple cores and peels usually when I make apple sauce and apple butter. I also prep celery seeds and dehydrate celery flakes for storage.
     
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  47. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    This is something our members can learn from . There is a huge difference between someone saying " THEY COULD " do something or " I WOULD " do something if the situation arose and someone that is actually " DOING SOMETHING " in real time .
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2022
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  48. lonewolf

    lonewolf Legendary Survivalist Staff Member
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    there is no point in waiting until TSHTF to start growing ones own food, there is so much to learn the time to start is NOW.
     
  49. Max rigger

    Max rigger Master Survivalist
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    Proud of my lad, in my absence he started off seeds, salad, toms, cucumbers/peppers/chili and more and they'll be in our little polytunnel/gaarden growing away soon. I got some spuds to chit oday and he'll plant them while I'm away working.

    He has surprised me in a few ways all through lock down and he's really into growing food now and not because I nagged him but because he is enjoying it..."Sorry lads, can't get down the pub I've got to prune my cucumbers and tomato plants" ;)
     
  50. poltiregist

    poltiregist Legendary Survivalist
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    The survival garden is about as important this year as the Great Depression or World War Two . I find the lack of input on this thread suspicious . Why would someone be hesitant to post about their garden ? Surely this is not a security threat . Is it because their garden simply does not exist ? As that saying goes " you can lead a horse to water , but you can not make it drink " . This phenonium is not surprising . As things deteriorate across the planet a clearer divide between preppers and bull sh----s will emerge . Eventually the bull sh----s will become the starving looters . Starving looters are the enemy of the prepper and subject to be dispatched .
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2022
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