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Friday, April 27, 2012

Planting Survival Crops

Anonymous wrote UrbanSurvivalSkills with these comments: ”The last couple years I have been planting some vegetables so supplement our food supply. I find the Farmer’s Almanac a very good source of information. I don’t have a very green thumb so I am sure I can do much better but I am grateful for having the past couple of years practice to refine my gardening. I have saved coffee cans with plastic lids and now have eight cans full of seeds for my post-chaos survival garden. Wanted to let you know about the Farmer’s Almanac.”

UrbanMan reply: Mr Not So Green Thumb, join the club. I suck at gardening too. I make every attempt at growing vegetables every year and about half my effort is thwarted by something or another. Even then there are some vegetables that are pretty easy to grow. Squash and Cucumber is high on my list as being easy to grow. My Green Beans, Carrots and Corn did poorly last year, however Egg Plant was a marginal success.

My team’s survival plan is roughly the same for the eight families we have on the team. Each family grows some type of vegetable at their home. To learn and practice these skills; to supplement their own food supply; and to harvest what they could when they need to Bug Out to my place or our backup site. Best case scenario, as the pre-collapse events get denser, we would begin to re-locate some items before it becomes dangerous or impossible to do.

Most of our families are planting in containers which can be moved, so I am expecting many more containers to fill up the back yard at our primary and secondary Bug In sites, virtually becoming a large garden. But, again I suck at gardening. Which brings up another point…having a well skilled grower on your team.

Two of the ladies on our Survival Team are skilled gardeners with earnestly earned green thumbs. In a perfect world if all of the families make their way to one central location, we will have two primary tenders of our survival garden. That frees up 14 other adults for other survival tasks such as guard, procurement patrols, security patrols, radio watch, general fabrication, maintenance and repair. …and of course I am reminded to help in the garden.

We are looking at a solar powered and re-charged pump for our rain barrels in order to irrigate our gardens automatically rather than the time consuming by hand method, although by hand allows for a targeted amount of water per plant enhancing our water conversation.

We all have collection of seeds. Some of us have the heirloom seed kits in vacuumed packed #10 cans or in sealed ammunition cans. We all have a robust supply of hybrid seeds for initial planting at the Bug in site, saving the heirloom seeds in case we have to Bug Out, as well as using the hybrid seeds for barter.

Lastly we have a green house kit with thick mil clear plastic. We only have one, but are thinking about buying another kit. Out intent is to take these kits with us if/when we Bug Out, but if it looks like we are staying on site, Bugging In, we’ll erect the green house in the fall to produced some vegetables for our consumption and barter. Our general idea is to mostly use vegetables for barter because if we use packaged “survival” food for barter, people may get the idea that we have a lot more – which we do…..just trying to minimize risks.

The Farmer's Almanac is a good resource. I have a couple of them, but the newest one has got to be 4 or 5 years old, so I'll take your e-mail as a reminder to pick up a newer copy. Thanks and prepare well.

1 comment:

  1. I'm planning to farm (almost exclusively, as hunting and fishing is never a SURE bet) for food. I know how many calories any given plant will produce per acre, but exactly how much land should be used for wheat, corn, tomatoes, etc... to meet dietary needs isn't very easy info to find. Is there a standardized formula?