How Much Land You Need To Go Off The Grid? The original homesteaders, the pioneers who went West, were following the American dream as it was understood in the 19th century — they wanted a house, and land, and a farm, of their own. Those who become homesteaders today aren’t necessarily aspirational in the same way; instead, they’re looking to escape mainstream America. They want to do so for many reasons: privacy, radicalism, a philosophical belief in self-sufficiency. But “going off the grid” is a daunting proposal, especially for those with families. According to the company’s research, a family of four that eats meat, dairy and eggs would need around two acres of land to feed themselves for a year. Here’s the chart. [Via HuffingtonPost.com]
Survival Garden, Be Prepared For Disaster or Food Shortage Emergency Growing A Survival Garden May Soon Become A Necessity! Have you considered that... survival gardening may soon be a true matter of survival and not just a choice? With the rapid decline of our financial system and food supply, grocery store produce and other products, may soon be at a crisis level shortage like we have never seen. At that point, gardening would no longer be a "choice" for a more self sufficient lifestyle, it would be a matter of survival for everyone! With the costs of living rising all the time, you can see the practical benefits of growing your own garden... you can save money, increase your family's health, and become more self sufficient all at the same time by growing vegetables in your backyard. Take advantage of whatever garden space you have, even if your garden may not provide all the food that you need, it will have a dramatic effect in reducing your food bill. Consider some of the benefits of growing your own garden... 1. Small Garden Space Larger Garden Space
Nine Things to Consider When Looking For Your Survival House image from Seattle Municipal Archives You don’t need a bunker in a remote location in Idaho or Montana to have a home that is able to withstand an emergency situation. However, there are a few things you’ll want to consider when choosing where to live as your home is an often overlooked but important part of your preparedness efforts. 1. 2. 3. Weather hazards can encompass large areas, so are sometimes difficult to avoid. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. Bonus #10. My home is my castle (albeit a very small castle). 9 Steps To Starting A Survival Garden In a time of economic uncertainty and rising food prices, it it always a good idea to have a garden to provide extra food for you and your family. Besides providing a source of food in an emergency, a garden is also a great source of wonderful vegetables which are MUCH healthier to eat than most of the food you can get at the supermarket. So how do you begin? The following are 9 steps that you can take to get your garden started..... #1) Decide What Your Goals Are - Do you want to grow enough just to add a few vegetables to your dinner once in a while? Do you want it to be able to provide enough food for your family if there is a major emergency? Some people who want to live "off the grid" end up building a garden large enough that it will provide almost all of the food that their family needs. #2) Evaluate Your Land - Once you know what your goals are, you need to evaluate the land that you are currently living on. So what is the solution? Comments comments
Adaptable House caters for growing family, home office, retired living, or divorce It uses sliding partitions and storage walls, extension modules and a puzzle of garden components. Danish architects Henning Larsen's new Adaptable House is designed to accommodate the most common lifestyle changes, from having children to settling into retirement. The energy-efficient home can even be fairly separated in case of divorce. View all Realized with developers Realdania Byg and contractors GXN, the Adaptable House not only offers flexible room arrangements, but has a built-in strategy for extending and separating volumes. Pre-figuring life changes The Adaptable House was conceived to help meet a range of lifestyle changes. Perhaps the most innovative and coolly pragmatic gesture is in adapting for divorce. Sliding partitions make flexible interiors (Photo: Jesper Ray/Realdania Byg) Not just a room under the stairs The architects were determined that any new configurations meet their criteria for natural light, ventilation, plus noise and temperature control. Adding on
Survival Food Series: 25 Survival Seeds You Need For Your Garden Living off the land sounds as inviting as Christmas dinner. But many have hardly had adequate experience being “farmers.” In fact, many have had no experience at all when it comes to planting anything. That being said, the day is slowly approaching where each of us may have to trade in our company identification badges for a shovel and a pair of overalls. Educating yourself on farming topics such as mirco farming, planting for the seasons, natural insect repellents, seed collection and seed storage could help prepare for an upcoming economic crisis. Start Practicing The only way to be fully prepared as far as growing plants is concerned is to practice, practice, practice. With each gardening experience will come more wisdom on how to handle a larger garden. Survival Seeds These seeds that were chosen were based upon their yield quantities, *ease in growing, nutritional content and for the season they are planted in. Sources: Google+
What Kind Of Small Farm Is Right For You? So, you're planning a small farm, but you're not sure if you want to have a hobby farm, a homestead, or a small farm business. What do you do? How do you decide on the best fit? Consider Your Goals The first thing to think about is, what do you want out of your small farm? For example, are you an entrepreneurial type who gets warm and glowy when you envision creating value-added farm products and selling them at farmers markets, or growing vegetables on acres of farmland and selling them in bulk to restaurants? Set Goals for Your Small Farm Hobby Farming Hobby farming is for people who have another primary source of income and want to have a farm that doesn't have to produce income or support them by providing for most or all of their needs. Hobby farmers can put a lot of money into their hobby farms, or they can run them more like a homestead in that they want to minimize how much money they use as an input. How to Start a Hobby Farm A Small Farm Business How to Start a Small Farm Business
BackYard Chickens One of the Many Benefits of Raising Chickens: Composting with Chickens Recently delivered 30 yard dumpster of hay, shavings & manure - 8-27-2011 After four months of the chickens working the compost - 12-31-2011 (this picture was taken where those trees are in the first picture) Regardless of whether you would like to start raising chickens or have been raising them for decades, it’s a known fact that chickens love to scratch. By now, you must be thinking, this article is about the benefits of raising chickens, not their downsides. Because part of the chicken yard is on a slight side hill, the chickens kept on scratching everything downhill, I added boards to "terrace" the compost area. Chickens and compost are “a match made in heaven”, because of their love of digging and scratching. The high protein bugs and beneficial microbes are a favorite “snack”, as well as, the weed seeds, food scraps, and any edible green plant tossed into the compost pile. Vermont Composting Company
How To Start Homesteading You might live in the city or the country. Your homesteading plans might be pie-in-the-sky dreams or you may be ready to start right this minute. Wherever you are right now, you should know that you can take a step toward your homesteading dreams today. It can be hard to figure out where to start. You may wonder what to do first, especially if you know nothing about owning land, farming, or going off-grid for energy. I'm hoping to demystify this a bit, and give you some concrete first steps to take that will begin your homesteading journey right where you are. Start Now You can start homesteading right now, today. Pick one or two projects that you can start in the next month or so. If that seems like too much, start smaller. Read and Learn Besides starting a small project or two this season, take the time to read up about homesteading skills. List Your Priorities Find a Homestead For many of us, finding that "place in the country" is a key part of homesteading. Plan the First Year
Lunar Planting What if we told you that mowing your lawn on certain days would mean you could mow less often? Before you roll your eyes, think about it. The moon influences more than the ocean tides. Just ask any bar worker, clergyman or nurse. In fact, my friend Emma braces herself before going to work. Amy works at the hospital and when the moon is full, those nights in the emergency room are, as she calls it, "memorable." Many scientists insist that the myth that a full moon affects the behavior of humans, animals and plants is a bunch of baloney. Before I go further, let me tease you with a possibility: What if mowing your lawn during certain phases of the moon retarded growth which meant you didn't have to mow as often? According to a National Geographic news article more gardeners today are turning to the moon for sage advice on the best time to plant, prune, weed, and harvest. Gardening by the moon is as old as time. Moon gardening has been passed down through many generations.
Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities This guide is written for anyone seeking help from federal programs to foster innovative enterprises in agriculture and forestry in the United States. Specifically, the guide addresses program resources in community development; sustainable land management; and value-added and diversified agriculture and forestry. Thus, it can help farmers, entrepreneurs, community developers, conservationists, and many other individuals, as well as private and public organizations, both for-profit and not-for-profit. The guide can also help USDA and other agency employees become aware and take better advantage of the enormous array of federal programs and resources available to their clients in supporting agricultural and forestry innovations. This edition constitutes the guide's fifth printing and third complete update, incorporating programs from the 2008 Farm Bill. Learn more by reading the detailed Introduction.
Guide to planting by the moon - The Gardeners Calendar Moon planting calendar for fruit, vegetables and flowers In ancient times when man had not quite got round to inventing the wristwatch, the most reliable source of telling the time was the sun, moon, and stars. There seems to be several opinions of who came up with the moon planting calendar first. Was it the Egyptians or the Babylonians? It is more than likely that each and every farmer had a planting calendar based on the moon phases, and there would be different variations depending on the geographical location. As their calendars where passed on through the generations they evolved to cover the different crops they tried to grow, and the more productive farming techniques used. It was noticed that different plants grow better when they are planted during different phases of the moon. To provide more accurate records it was noted that certain crops faired better when planted whilst the moon was in a specific constellation. Moon planting rediscovered Three Moon planting methods
Concept Plan For A Sustainable Farm Here is a sustainable-living concept plan for a 1/4 acre home in an urban setting. I hope you can get some good ideas from it for your own home! Following this plan is a concept plan for a home on acreage. Click on the plans for larger views! Below is a conceptual plan for a hypothetical sustainable farm that could be created on between 2-10 acres. Our own home is on 2 acres and as such we do not have any animals other than pets. Some things we have found particularly beneficial is siting the garden below our home so that we can collect the rain water off our roof and store it in a 500 gallon barrel to irrigate the garden. What sustainability means to me! More great ideas are available at Mother Earth News online:
Soda Bottle Carrots: a Very Small Kitchen Garden | Your Small Kitchen Garden Seventeen days after I planted carrots in a sawed-off soda bottle, young carrot tops had sprouted on the windowsill in my basement. I encourage people who have little space that they can still grow small kitchen gardens. To that end, on May 1st I cut the top off of a two-liter soda bottle, filled the bottle with soil, and planted carrots in it. I described this project in a post titled Small Kitchen Garden Carrots in Containers. I mentioned my container carrots again on May 18, and again on June 17. It has been an interesting project, and I encourage you to try it. Mature Container Carrots After three months of growing, a carrot of nearly any variety should be mature. After three months of growth, my container carrots have pathetic tops. So, my container carrots—a variety that matures in 65 days—ought to be dropping seeds all over my deck. The good news is that those sickly-looking carrot tops protrude from very pronounced orange carrot shoulders. Pushing Plants If I don’t?