Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Budget Garden Preparations

During World War II, the United States was forced to ration food. It was the family Victory Gardens that pulled the hungry nation through.
Two percent (2%) of the US population feeds the other 98% as well as millions of other people around the world.  This makes our food supply chain very fragile.  Many things could disrupt it.

Every adult who is responsible for the lives of others should have the following gardening preps:
  1. Garden Hoe - top quality and sharp - $57
  2. Round point shovel - no plastic nor fiberglass - $40
  3. Garden Rake - 16 metal teeth - $30
  4. Vegetable Heirloom Seeds - sealed and kept frozen; rotate them each year - $16
  5. Fertilizer - use compost or 10-10-10 sparingly - $12
  6. Quality Garden Hose ($35) and metal water sprinkler ($8) IF you don't have one already.
  7. Gardening Book -  The Vegetable Gardner's Bible is a good choice - $20
All tools should be good quality, heavy duty, with hard wood handles that can be easily replaced and no plastic. Preferably Made in the U.S.A.  The hoe is the tool you will use the most so having an extra one is a good idea.  Doing so will also allow two people at once to work in the garden.

I recommend alternating your seed source each year to provide diversity.  Date each container of seeds when you put them in the freezer.  Don't discard old seeds as they are good for 2-5 years although the germination rate decreases.  I plant or spread my old seeds some where, in the woods, in a meadow, along the back roads, creek or river in hopes of having a hidden food or seed supply in the future, if ever needed. Some plant seeds or plants around their apartment hedges and in the flower beds with a small stake so the lawn care people don't pull them up.

Compost is a great natural fertilizer, but if not available, a commercial time release 10-10-10 fertilizer is good for beginners as it will reduce the risk of burning your garden up from over fertilizing.  Experienced gardeners will use different fertilizers for different vegetables and based on the results of soil tests.

There are a number of good Gardening books on Amazon.  Get one that is rated four stars or better with a low percentage of 1 star ratings.  The more ratings by verified buyers, the more reliable the rating. Get a hard copy book, not an electronic version. 

The one time investment for quality tools is less than $200, then $15 for fertilizer and then less than $20 per year for the seeds for a operating cost of $35 each year for a productive hobby and hundreds, if not thousands of dollars worth of fresh healthy food.

Beyond this, an electric Garden Tiller is a great addition to help prepare your soil.  Start breaking up your garden plot by February before the grass and weeds start growing, then again a month later.

Don't wait! Enjoy fresh grown vegetables this year.

For additional information see the following links:
Blog Table of Contents

Gardening Links
Gardening 101– Soil Basics
Green House for year-round food supply
Vegetable Planting Dates
Vegetable Days to Harvest

Seeds for Survival
Preppers Garden

Prepper Livestock series
DIY Solar System

Or click on a label below for similar topics.

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