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Homesteading Lifestyle

Preparing for growing on our homestead

Warmer weather means it’s planting season

By Steve W

The sun is starting to peak out from behind the clouds. That means it’s growing season. After the bleak snows of winter it’s great to see rabbits scurrying across the fields and the birds out earlier each morning.

As the madness of Covid-19 persists it is more important than ever to secure food personalised sources. The ability to bake bread, can, preserve and freeze foods is vital. With a large garden area there is no excuse to not grow fruits and vegetables on the homestead.

Investing in seeds for growing vegetables

I recently purchased some butternut squash and spinach seeds (see below).

Squash and spinach seeds

I grabbed a couple of bags of compost from the garden centre and cleaned out the compost bin which you can read about here. I checked last week and saw bugs, beetles and creepy crawlies of all descriptions rooting around inside. Perfect!

Composting

A few piles of grass cuttings, neatly scraped together with a rake, were tossed in as well to add some fertilising power. It won’t be long before the literal fruits of labour shine through.

Using a dog bed to grow veggies

I’m not sure if I’m the only person who uses an old dog bed to grow fruit and veg but it works well. It’s a nice size for starters. Drilling a few holes in the bottom allows for the water to escape.

Dog bed for planting vegetables

Keeping pests away from the produce

Creep crawlies of the unwanted kind often find a way into the wrong areas. Slugs are a nuisance so I fill empty tin cans with out-of-date beer to attract them in. It works a treat and they climb in to have a look, attracted by the yeast. Be warned, it can be a pretty messy affair cleaning them out.

Salt always seemed a bit extreme as it makes the slugs swell up and effectively explode. The farmer next to us sprinkles little rings of salt around his plantings to keep them away.

Using an old car to grow tomatoes

Even though it makes for an unsightly viewpoint, old cars littering our fields are useful. As well as providing parts for current models, vehicles like our rusted, vintage mini provide a good option for tomato growth.

The windows create an excellent greenhouse effect. When the sun truly comes out it gets very hot and humid inside, leading to a massive growth spurt and some juicy red tomatoes for tea.

Plan for the worst, hope for the best

Look at whatever space you have available to grow on. Whether it be a few plant pots on the balcony of a high rise flat or a spacious garden. I don’t want to be alarmist but our freedoms are under attack.

Food shortages and supply of commodities will become scarce as and when new crises occur. These could be health related, conflict, civil unrest or similar.

Having your own food source is clean, healthy and helps keep you to be prepared should the shit hit the fan. Plus, what’s tastier and more satisfying than sitting down to a nice lettuce, tomato and carrot salad that all came from your garden, grown from your own hand?

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Do you live on a homestead or interested in this lifestyle? Continue the conversation by sending an email to escapersmedia@gmail.com with your thoughts.

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