Episode-623- An Interview with Jason Akers “The Self Sufficient Gardener”

Jason Akers of TheSelfSufficientGardener.com

Today I wrap up the 4 part interview series that began on Wednesday the 9th by interviewing Jason Akers of TheSelfSufficientGardener.com Jason is well known for his articles in magazines such as Backwoods Home and Self Reliance Illustrated along with his podcast called of course “The Self Sufficient Gardener Podcast”

Jason joins us on TSP today to discuss a variety of subjects including plant histories of brassicas and tomatoes, why he does not practice raised bed gardening, why he teaches gardening based on efficiency, responsibility and sustainability and more.

Jason is a long time TSP listener and a supporter of the MSB both as a member and by donating his eBook, (Planting Trees The Low Cost Easy Way) which MSB members will find in the “Download” section of their MSB accounts.  He also has another website with a podcast he does about once a week called “Hunt, Gather, Grow, Eat” which focuses more on wild foraging, hunting and other sources of gathering and using wild foods.

Join Jason and I today as we discuss…

  • Thoughts on gardening with efficiency, responsibility, and sustainability
  • How permaculture ethics incorporate with self sufficient gardening
  • Why getting a return of surplus is critical to self sufficiency
  • Providing your gardens nutrients with composting and vermicompost
  • The use of rain water harvesting for irrigation
  • The quail tractor an alternative to those with restrictions on chickens
  • The wisdom of growing or raising things you can’t generally buy
  • The shocking history of the tomato and the belief that it was poisonous
  • The history of all brassicas and how they were developed from a single plant
  • Japanese beetle, pest or the perfect chicken food
  • Toads the ultimate predator of the garden
  • Training chickens to eat slugs
  • Why Jason specifically does not use raised beds or do square foot gardening

Additional Resources for Today’s Show

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10 Responses to Episode-623- An Interview with Jason Akers “The Self Sufficient Gardener”

  1. Great episode guys!!! Love both podcasts!

  2. Matthew N Gooseneck GA

    This is awesome! A couple of my two favorite podcasts! Now if we could just get Jack Spirko Jason ackers, Paul Wheaton , Tom gresham, and maybe, throw in Glenn Beck, all on one podcast! That would be the ultimate in learning!
    Great Job Jack! Thanks for all the time you put in to bring us these interviews. How about an interview with Tom Gresham?

  3. My Rat Terrier which pass away after 17 years loved to eat Japanese Beetles.

  4. I’ve heard people have success against sq.vine borers by mixing DE in the dirt around the vine. Also crumbled dry bay leaves. I know DE takes out beneficials, too, but I’m thinking about trying it this yr.

    Also, my DH made me a few PVC frames w/plastic windowscreen to put over brassicas to keep off the moths. I wonder if just keeping a zucchini/winter squash under the frame until the plants get too big for it would be long enough to keep the evil moth away??

    • Modern Survival

      @Emily the screens will help but unfortunately there is no such things as “to big” for borers. You would need to manually pollinate your squash. That said this is exactly what I plant to do long term to have squash in my garden again.

    • This is where you can really use phenology to a positive effect. If you keep some chicory around your garden you will know that when it blooms the adult squash vine borers (the moths) emerge. Once they emerge they will quickly get down to business followed by laying eggs at you vine bases. For those without chicory, a 95 degree day is the indication (although they usually don’t emerge until 100 degrees).

      So either of those two signs is an indication of when you need to start covering your plants. My plan is to use a row cover this year or just plant butternuts like Jack suggested. Also he is right about the pollination. Unless you have as many squash bugs as I do. They keep my plants pollinated too I think 🙂 (that’s a joke).

  5. Good to hear someone else not a fan of raised beds for all things. Had a discussion with a friend a couple weeks ago on raised beds, vs not raised beds.

    I’m planting various herbs, perennials, fruit trees on a hillside (not a steep slope). We had to cut down some of the existing trees to get more light into the area. Soil is sandy loam, drains well, had years of leaf litter building up.

    My friend says grow my herbs in raised beds only. To me it seems a waste to bury what seems to be good dirt (if somewhat acidic) with raised beds. Not to mention the extra expense of finding stuff to fill in the raised beds. Nor would they catch the run off rainfall from up hill.

    We planted a few fruit trees already. After fighting rocks and roots I may rethink the raised bed idea. Got to be a better way other. My son with a pick ax did wonders, but don’t know if I could have done it by myself.

    I imagine we’ll try various things, see what works best.

  6. Interviewing guests such as these has raised your podcasts to a new level. It is a good example of synergy: One Jack plus One guest equals 3 or more great minds. Thanks for getting Paul Wheaton to do his podcasts as well.

  7. You guys are terribly entertaining! LOL And yes, my chickens absolutely LOVE Japanese beetles.. but they will eat just about anything. My big black cat loves to eat water frogs, but he only eats the legs. My chickens would find the leftovers and literally fight over them.

    We are lovers of pecan trees~ and don’t think for a minute that it will take 10 years to get a pecan~ with proper management, you will see pecans much sooner.. 🙂 Our neighbor is in his 70s and he will sometimes make comments about not living long enough to see his small orchard produce pecans.. but my husband always tells him, ‘maybe.. or maybe not…but you’ll enjoy your orchard NOW..’

    Do what you love today… NONE of us are promised a tomorrow.

    Great show! Thanks to both of you for all you do.