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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Many of us plan to survive long term by growing our own food. Those of us with a back round in farming know that yearly changes in weather (NO GLOBAL WARMING) can effect yields big time.
The drought of two years ago and this season very wet and cool spring even a cool start to summer has delayed planting and put many crops behind and yield will be way down.
We must remember the need to stock pile foods that can be kept in place like root cellars .
While winter wheat is doing ok it is way behind and second cropping the land will be a no go this year. Many acres of corn will go un-planted or be rotated to short growing Soy beans.
Most of the garden is up but behind by 3 weeks.
Educating your self on what to use if you must replant do to a swing year is a must.
 

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We enjoy gardening at our home. Not for prepping, as that started for me only recently, but been gardening for over a decade. I've been thinking about how our gardening fits with our prepping. This year we specifically planted a "salsa garden" so we can can a ton of salsa (both for prep and now). A few nights ago, as I was hand watering from the hose, I realized that I likely won't have that source of water in a SHTF situation. I realized that most home gardens are watered this way. This made me think that "gardening skills" in arid regions aren't worth much unless they involve creative means of sourcing water, or techniques for growing with very little water.

I happen to have a creek behind my yard, so I guess I would be bailing water up in buckets.

I also plan on putting a 50 gallon bucket to collect rainwater from the gutter of the back of my shop (adjacent the garden). However, there is not enough rainfall in CO for this to be sustainable through the growing season.


Sorry if I pirated your thread with this comment. It's been on my mind, and your thread seems to fit.
 

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I think its important to note while its published you can grow all the kibble needed on 8,000 square feet that doesn't work everywhere and at all times like Smitty so easily described. Since my garden land is in the desert I only expect one growth a year and have to make it work. Fortunately there is a range from April to October within which I believe it will always work for at least one growth - 2 on a few varietals if I'm lucky. With only one growth you can expect to need more square footage.

In CA, central valley, I've never had troubles getting multiple yields in a year. Even our winters are mild enough you can grow some things like lettuce and carrots.

5Runner you might look at the chart for rain water run off per square foot of roof line / rain expectations a year. You can likely gather a lot more than 50 gallons.
 

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Those that say they will "just garden" come SHTF will soon be dead. Nothing accounts for experience. When to plant, what to plant, what variety to plant, type soil, how often to water. All these things most have no idea of. If you don't have the space to garden now how are you going to have the space come SHTF?
Even if your life is such you don't want to do large scale gardening right now atleast do small scale just to learn, even if its only in 5gal buckets.

I small scale garden. But I look at gardening for now as supplimenting my food stores.
 

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Plants grow best from soft rain water so I look at the rain collection system as part of the gardening. Rule of thumb is you get .6 gallons of water from one square foot of roof space from 1" of rain. You will need to look up your average yearly rainfall. A better look is the months of the least amount of rainfall as that is when it will be critical to collect every drop of rain.

Some type of greenhouse is really important especially the further north you are. Get your seeds started before weather permits them going into the ground. Even something as simple as an aquarium by a south facing window used as a place to start seeds will help alot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
We enjoy gardening at our home. Not for prepping, as that started for me only recently, but been gardening for over a decade. I've been thinking about how our gardening fits with our prepping. This year we specifically planted a "salsa garden" so we can can a ton of salsa (both for prep and now). A few nights ago, as I was hand watering from the hose, I realized that I likely won't have that source of water in a SHTF situation. I realized that most home gardens are watered this way. This made me think that "gardening skills" in arid regions aren't worth much unless they involve creative means of sourcing water, or techniques for growing with very little water.

I happen to have a creek behind my yard, so I guess I would be bailing water up in buckets.

I also plan on putting a 50 gallon bucket to collect rainwater from the gutter of the back of my shop (adjacent the garden). However, there is not enough rainfall in CO for this to be sustainable through the growing season.

Sorry if I pirated your thread with this comment. It's been on my mind, and your thread seems to fit.
That is what this is all about jump right in so many things to think about and look at.
We have the means to support 25-30 families large scale food production will be important to us. There is no doubt we can do it . We will need to always rememebr what we do know about farming a feww good years in a row and we often get complacent . The same thing goes for securty
 

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We have just the opposite problem here, too much rain. That can ruin your garden just as much as not enough, especially this time of year.
 

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Father Nature has been putting the screws to my garden the last few years. I used to be able to grow anything, now I can grow most anything that isn't food.It doesn't mean it will flower either.
 

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My brother and I finished planting for our farm operation yesterday afternoon.

We are "several" days behind normal. Also the cold we spring has affected the population of row crops significantly.

After having a 30% reduction in total row crop out put, we seen corn go from 5.35 2011 to 7.67 this was the highest we sold corn for.

There is no back log of grain crop stock pile right now.

If I am correct in what I see locally you will see another year of diminished crop production through out the mid west.

This will create at minimum another elevated crop cost year, made worse by the shortfall already experienced. I do not believe $8.00 corn is outside the rehlm of possibility.
 

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Really great post Ladies and Gents! Hopefully this thread really takes off.

I think that many of those with their #10 can of seeds and plan on "just planting a garden" are going to be in for a rude awakening if they arent gardening a little bit and preserving their food now! There is so much more to it than throwing some seeds in the dirt and watering them.

The last two season here have been bruatally hot and pretty dry for extended periods of time. This season has been unseasonably cool, Im not complaining, and very wet. We havent got a lot at one time but brief 1-3 rains every 3-10 days have been the norm here this year and its impacted my garden more than I would have guessed. I have got a very late start in this year and some things I am not sure if I should even attempt at this point. Even for me as a country boy growing up on a homestead farm, I have found that its been a bit of learning curve for me the last three seasons that I have seriously been trying to garden.

I think too one of the very often over looked aspects of gardening is sometimes you get very little produce or you can straight up have crop failure, then what do you do? I think the ability to grow things that can be stored long term to get you through a failed or seriously reduced produce year will be critical to surviving after the SHTF. Thats why I feel a good and large root cellar, the ability to can and dehydrate should figure heavily into ones preps. Not every year is going to be a bumper crop kinda year.

I think too a lot of folks out there who arent all that experienced dont have a clue as to just how big a garden one needs often times. You might have a 6 moth growing season but your only going to get good production for perhaps the latter half of that growing season. That being said it will be important to grow enough during that shirt window to allow you to preserve and sock away a LOT of produce to get you by the rest of the year and possibly longer than that should you have a bad next season! Growing and preserving that much in a 3-4 month period is a monumental task to say the least! When you do grow that much you have a lot of work too weeding and watering. Speaking of watering just where are you going to get all that water and how are you gonna get it to the garden during dry spells that are unexpected or unplanned...we have that situation here in Texas all the time! I use a water hose for the time being but what are you going to do when there is no water at the tap? I recently came off a road trip from DFW to San Diego and back, that thought crossed my mind several times on the long drive. The deserts of California and Arizona were alive with lush green fields of crops...just one little problem. What do you do when the canals that bring in water from miles out side the area are no longer available? If your living in that area, now theres you a serious SHTF situation if ever there was one!

Lots of serious thoughts to think about here on this discussion topic...
 

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I just traded my canning stuff for a BX-25 x 2 mag, since I had no room in my barn to move or can.

I'll buy another $15 Pressure canner and some more mason jars at the yard sales this year.It's not like I will have an overabundance of veggies to can.
 

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My mind is still on procuring water...

Reading this thread gave me an idea. Though it might make for one crummy year of production, it would be a fun little challenge. For those that are avid gardeners, try one season of gardening WITHOUT the hose. Maybe just a portion of the garden. See how it works with only rain water and what ever other ideas you have at your location. I might try that next year. It's the same thing I do when making a fire camping. I practice different techniques (as if I didn't have that lighter in my pocket). That way when you really don't have it...it's nothing new.

By the end of this season, I will have my rooftop rainwater collection system in place. Very curious if it will be worth it.
 
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