Tag Archives: gardening

Episode-2121- Time to Start Planning for the 2018 Spring Garden

It is Easy to Forget that Each Season is Really Only About 13 Weeks Long!

Each year usually in January or February I do a show on spring garden planting and it hit me that I should really do so earlier.  Why? Because every year I transition from winter to spring with a entire list of shit that was supposed to be done, that ain’t done.

I fall behind on new bed preparation, seed starting, plant layout planting and other projects.  I mean just think about seed starting, this should begin for many crops a full 8-10 weeks before they are to be set out.  Cole crops like Broccoli and Kale can be planted well before the last frost as well.

Other in the ground starters like peas for instance can generally handle down to about 28-30 degree over night lows, so we need to be ready to plant them very early and success them into summer crops like tomatoes and peppers.

And this is the time to START planning, at least get down on an organized list what you want to do.  Because yes, it is the holidays, there will be shopping, travel, etc. but the mind is alert right now.  Soon you will have what I call “Christmas Coma” where you sort of cost though the end of December and most of January.  It is a slow time for many of us, but also tends to become a time of inaction.  Hunting season ends, too damn cold for many things, no baby livestock to worry over yet, etc.

To break it what you need is momentum!  Otherwise next thing is it is March and you are over paying for Bonnie’s plants at Walmart because it is too late to start seeds for the year etc.

So how do you get momentum?  The plan is your momentum.  The hardest part of any process is what?  Getting started!  If you have that plan, that rough outline it becomes a to do list, you follow that in those slow weeks and by the time things pick up your are hitting the ground running.  However if you wait until mid January to plan, you put it off one week, then two, then it is February, the some life event happens, its March, got it yet?

Today we won’t talk so much about what to do but getting that plan in place to create scheduled action items so that when spring comes and the birds sing, your growing season is off to a great start.  And even if gardening isn’t your thing, there is a big lesson in that.

Join Me Today to Discuss…

  • The lesson in taking a trip/vacation/etc.
  • Why planning is important for spring planting
    • It works
    • Gives you actionable items
    • It is a sanity check
    • Allows you to sort critical from necessary from nice to have
    • Prevents mixing spring and winter prep items
  • Some things I am planning for this year
    • Basic planting diagrams for all annual production
    • Massive wicking bed and aquatic expansion
    • Seed starting including a grow tent this year
    • Forage system for the quail aviary
    • New run of quail for production
    • Pastured chickens instead of new ducks this year
      • Brooder construction
      • Chicken tractor – build and complete dates, etc
      • Quantity – just for me or for others too?
      • Date to order
      • Date on pasture
      • Date of harvest
  • Key Dates to Determine
    • Last frost and last hard freeze dates (not the same at all)
    • Dates to get your seeds started by
    • Construction start and end dates (planned and “drop dead”)
    • Planting dates
    • Fertilizer and amendment dates
    • Spaying of trees and perennial dates
  • Keep a garden book
    • Weekly high and low avg temps, any frosts
    • Date of rain activity
    • In ground seed planting and first germination
    • Pest activity
    • Bud break on perennials
    • Flowering and first harvest of annuals
  • Final Thoughts

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

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Episode-2027- Twelve Overlooked Vegetables for the Garden

Purple Tomatillo – An Overlooked Garden All Star

In the spring and early summer talk a walk in the garden section of any big store or even typical smaller plant nurseries.  Mostly you see peppers, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers and a few other veggies and herbs.

There are so many other options though and many are tougher than our stand alone favorites.  Fore instance so many people love growing tomatoes but in many areas they are plagued by early and late blight.  You can usually get a decent yield and then you hit a wall, well why not grow tomatillos instead.  They make fantastic salsa, are great grilled and are pretty much immune to most disease and pests.

Today we walk though 12 such options for your garden and in most of the country there is still time to get these guys up and running for your fall planting.

Join Us Today To Discuss these 12 Overlooked Garden Edibles…

  • Tomatillos
  • Sweet Potato
  • Egg Plant
  • Arugula
  • Swiss Chard
  • Amaranth
  • New Zealand Spinach
  • Orach
  • Ground Cherry
  • Lambs Quarters
  • Purslane
  • Nasturtium

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

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Episode-1986- Perennial Vegetables for your Homestead

“Bloody Dock” – A Beautiful and Edible Perennial Most People Have Never Heard Of

Today we are going to turn our focus on food production in our own back yards.  The plants I will describe here are wonderful for growing in just about any environment.  And even though they are perennials most will do find in containers and wicking beds, etc.  Indeed a few are custom made for such applications though normally not grown that way.

Perennials are wonderful because they either come back on their own every year or they require very minimal effort to assure their return each year.  Many are even considered weeds or a nuisance by the unknowing.  Yep a plant that requires minimal work, self propagates and is good to eat we have come to see as a weed.

Join Me Today To Discuss…

  • How we define perennial vs how we should define it as growers
  • Twelve Plants you should be growing for trouble free food production
    1. Bloody Dock (True Perennial to Zone 4) – Source
    2. Ostrich Fern (True Perennial to Zone 3) – Source
    3. Scarlet Runner Beans (True Perennial to Zone 6 with heavy mulch) – Source
    4. Sorrel (True Perennial to Zone 3) – Source
    5. Jerusalem Artichoke (Behaves Like a Perennial to Zone 3) – Source
    6. Lambs Quarters (Behaves Like a Perennial to Zone 4 and possibly Zone 3) – Source
    7. Day Lilies (True Perennial to Zone 4) – Source
    8. Good King Henry (True Perennial to Zone 3) – Source
    9. Egyptian Onions (True Perennial to Zone 4) – Source
    10. Horse Radish (True Perennial to Zone 3) – Source
    11. New Zealand Spinach (True Perennial to Zone 7 or Zone 6) – Source
    12. Lovage (True Perennial to Zone 3) – Source

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

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Episode-1957- The Beginners Guide to Growing Food

I have done some really advanced stuff with agriculture and permaculture over the years but I realized it has been a long time since I have done something totally devoted to a true beginner.  The person looking at a patch of ground and a back porch and just wanting a garden and some of their own food on their own table.

This does not have to be complicated and it also doesn’t have to be expensive.  Our grand parents and great grand parents didn’t spend a lot of money to grow a garden, they didn’t have design certificates or gadgets either.  Still today we have a lot of options they didn’t, by combining their simple approach and some modern convience we can get off the ground running fast.

We can have a great harvest in our first year and lay the ground work for a garden that gets better and better over time.  We can also do things in a way that shortens the learning curve and makes us feel good about what we are doing, rather than demotivated and frustrated as many first year gardeners become.

Join Me Today to Discuss…

  • An example of why the “green thumb” is a myth to be ignored
  • What is the goal of a family garden
    • Produce food
    • Save money
    • Improve quality of life
    • Provide better healthier nutrition
  • Should you go with “raised beds”
    • What is the ground like
    • What is your climate like
    • Can you either automate or simply irrigation
    • Are you going to want “borders” if so why
    • Where are you going to get your material and how much will it cost
  • Why I recommend buying plants your first year, at least some of them
    • Plants I recommend buying
      • Peppers
      • Tomatoes
      • Broccoli/Cauliflower
    • High success rate
    • Very broad availability of varieties now
    • Cost is not bad, and this is a learning year
  • Plant I recommend planting from seed in the ground
    • Peas/Beans etc.
    • Beets
    • Radishes
    • Arugula
    • Dill
    • Squash
    • Melons
  • Plants I recommend starting in containers even in your first year or buying
    • Chard
    • Lettuce
    • Basil
    • Parsley
    • Chives
  • Why everyone should grow sweet potato
  • Bed establishment
    • Double dig, sheet mulch or both
    • Bring in material – yes till/turn it in
    • Mulch with wood chips
  • The things that will make your plants successful almost no mater what
    • Dr. Earth 1014 Premium Gold Organic All-Purpose Fertilizer (balanced NPK) – Link
    • Garrett Juice Plus (foliar feed) – Link
    • Blood and Bone Fertilizer – Link
    • GS Plant Foods Liquid Kelp – Link
    • Hydro Organics Earth Juice Cal-n-Mag Plant Food – Link
    • Liquinox Iron Zinc Chelated Solution – Link
    • Endo Mycorrhizae Fungal Inoculation – Link
    • Azomite consider sourcing locally – Link
    • Green Sand consider sourcing locally – Link
    • Lava Sand – source this locally!
    • Expanded Shale – source this locally!
  • Going forward or doing more in the first year (composting-worms-etc)

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

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Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

 

Episode-1932- Seed Starting Primer for 2017

Grow Light Tech Has Advanced a Lot Since I Started TSP!

Spring is coming!  Well technically it was spring here in Texas 4 days ago, now it is winter again and it will be spring her on Thursday and Summer for a day on next Tuesday before returning to winter on the following day.

For most of the nation is it actually winter and it may seem spring is a long way off, but it isn’t.  March 21st is the official first day of spring, that is only 63 days.  For much of the country your last frost date is close to that time, perhaps only a few more weeks out.

Many seeds should be started in a protected environment about 6-8 weeks before setting out, translation, it is time to get those seeds ordered and started very soon.

Join me today as we discuss…

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

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Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

 

Episode-1764- Small Scale Food Forestry

A Forest Garden Makes for a Better Back Yard

A Forest Garden Makes for a Better Back Yard

Today is the first ever show chosen by official poll of the audience.  The choices were and the order they came in were…

  • One – Small Scale Food Forestry (26%)
  • Two – Making and Using Herbal Medicines (20%)
  • Three – Outdoor Cooking – Grilling, Smoking and More (16%)
  • Four – Setting Up a Remote Property (BOL) (14%)
  • Five – How to Talk to Friends and Family about Prepping (12%)
  • Six – Investing in Gold and Silver (9%)

You can see that poll and the final results here.

Also the poll to select shows for May has been posted and you can vote on that here.

So today we move into the topic of small scale food forestry.  This is a topic many are interested in, with a food forest, even a small one we can produce

  • Food
  • Fuel
  • Medicines
  • Fibers
  • Wild Life Habitat
  • Beauty
  • And Increased Property Values

The entire concept is largely misunderstood though, as forest invokes visions of huge systems and yes they can be large systems, they can also be quite small.

Join Me Today As We Discuss…

  • What is a food forest or a forest garden
  • A quick review of the seven layers of a forest
    • Canopy
    • Sub Canopy
    • Shrub
    • Herbacious
    • Vine
    • Ground Cover
    • Rhizome – Roots
  • Why it is all about the edge
  • Small Land Holding Advantages
    • Can be irrigated easily
    • You can and should sheet much everything
    • Easy to intensively manage
    • Contain their own micro climates (easy to create more)
    • Most work can be done by hand (build and manage)
    • Are the most productive per square foot on the planet
    • Do not attract attention and easy to secure
    • Nitrogen fixers are not as critical (still a good idea)
  • Things that are different from typical food forestry
    • The layers are scaled down
    • The number of support species are reduced
    • There are few “sacrificial plantings”
    • They don’t require swales or chickens but both are welcome
    • Small ponds and barrels are easily fed with roof catchment
  • Special Considerations that Open Your Options Up
    • Shape isn’t critical, do what works
    • Put in more irrigation then you think you will ever need
    • Consider ponds, please consider ponds
    • Think about power (solar first but grid is better then nothing)
    • You can plant a LOT closer and a LOT more dense then you think
    • If you have animals design in their nutrient flow
    • In a larger space build “glades” and maximize the edges
    • Build structures for your vines they can otherwise dominate a small system
    • Fertilize (organically) a lot early on
    • Mulch and chop and drop like crazy

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

olivearbequinaqfruitBob Wells Plant of the WeekArbequina Olive – The most cold hardy variety of olives know that also has one of the highest olive production and oil yields.

The soil should be well drained. Tree has an upright habit. We recommend covering the tree the first winter if the temperature drops below freezing.

Once the tree has been in the ground for a year and is well rooted, it then will begin to withstand the colder temperatures.

The older the tree gets the more, cold hardy it becomes. Oil is sweet, delicate and fragrant with intense fruitiness but low levels of bitterness and spiciness.

If you live above zone 7, you can grow it in a container and bring it inside during the winter months.

Bob Wells specializes in edible landscape, including: Fruit Trees, Berry Plants, Vine Fruit, Nut Trees, as well as the hard to find Specialty Fruit Trees. Find this plant and more at BobWellsNursery.Com

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Also remember we have an expert council you can address your calls to. If you do this you should email me right after your call at jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with expert council call in the subject line. In the body of your email tell me that you just called in a question for the council and what number you called in from. I will then give the call priority when I screen calls.

Join the MSB Today

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Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Episode-1744- 10 Perennial Edibles You Should Consider Growing

bushcherry

Sand Cherry, A Beautiful, Hardy, Long Lived, Productive Plant

It is March and that means planting or planning planting depending on where you live.  In any event if you plan on annual gardening by now you are, you have plants started or you will be likely buying starts.

Today though we focus on what I call the “long term investment strategy of growing food”, of course that means perennials.  I tried to pick a good mix of over looked and misunderstood plants today.  Different plants the fill different needs, if times get tough or even if they don’t.

When I wrote this title I originally called it 10 perennial edibles you should grow, then I realized that was sort of arrogant and not practical.  Not every plant grows well everywhere and not everyone likes the same thing.  So today we don’t just look at these 10 plants, but where they grow well, what they provide, what they require and how to acquire them.

Join Me Today to Discuss…

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the day

jujubeBob Wells Plant of the WeekLi Jujube Tree
Adaptable from zone 5 to zone 9.

Also called the Chinese date. It is a round shaped fruit, reddish brown, dry and wrinkled, sweet and chewy (like dates) when fully ripe in early fall.

Attractive, easy to grow tree: hardy, drought resistant, virtually pest and disease free.

It is self-fruitful, but if you want to boost production, plant a Lang Jujube along with it.

Bob Wells specializes in edible landscape, including: Fruit Trees, Berry Plants, Nut Trees, as well as the hard to find Specialty Fruit Trees. Find this plant and more at BobWellsNursery.Com

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Also remember we have an expert council that can answer you questions. If you have a question send it to jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with TSPC Epert in the subject line. Ask your question in one to two sentences so it is clear then provide any additional details. Make sure to tell me what council member the question is for. You Meet the Expert Council at this Link.

Join the MSB Today

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Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Episode-1449- Seed Saving and Land Races with Justin Huhn

Learn more About Justin's Work at TheSeedKeepers.com

Learn more About Justin’s Work at TheSeedKeepers.com

Justin is an organic farmer & seed grower, and an impassioned gardening and seed-saving educator. He co-founded All Good Things Organic Seeds, a farm-based seed company in Ojai, CA.

Through the process of establishing an organic seed company, Justin became an expert in growing, harvesting, cleaning, and storing seeds of hundreds of different species. Now with his current project, The Seedkeepers, he is focused entirely on supporting and educating gardeners to grow more food and successfully save quality seed.

Justin is a long time TSP listener and community member and joins us today to discuss, the role of Hybrid seeds in a survival garden. Developing LandRaces and why every survivalist and homesteader should be doing it.  The importance of seed quality, starting with good seed, and why seeds you save yourself are the best.

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Also remember we have an expert council you can address your calls to. If you do this you should email me right after your call at jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with expert council call in the subject line. In the body of your email tell me that you just called in a question for the council and what number you called in from. I will then give the call priority when I screen calls.

Join the MSB Today

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Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Episode-1429- Steven Scott on Seed Saving

Cindy and Stephen Scott of Terroir Seeds

Cindy and Stephen Scott of Terroir Seeds

Stephen Scott is an Heirloom Seedsman, soil building advocate, locavore, amateur chef, artist and co-owner with his wife Cindy of Terroir Seeds, having been involved with heirloom seeds, environmental education, habitat restoration, soil health and building local food pathways for more than 20 years.

He’s an author, speaker and educator on seed, soil, food and health and how they relate to and strengthen each other. They welcome dialogue and can be reached at Seeds@UnderwoodGardens.com or 888-878-5247.

Steve joins us today to discuss saving seed and a new online course he has released in partnership with Marjory Wildcraft on the same subject.

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Also remember we have an expert council you can address your calls to. If you do this you should email me right after your call at jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with expert council call in the subject line. In the body of your email tell me that you just called in a question for the council and what number you called in from. I will then give the call priority when I screen calls.

Join the MSB Today

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Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Episode-1413- 12 More Herbs Every Survivalist Should Grow

Lemon Balm Growing in My Food Forest Edge

Lemon Balm Growing in My Food Forest Edge

Today we do part two of a series on herbs every survivalist should grow.  Herbs are great because even if have a tiny yard these are 12 plants you can easily find space for even on a postage stamp city lot.

The key is these 12 plants will provide you food, medicine, relaxation and beauty and require very little of you in return. I truly believe that ones quality of life can be improved just by growing and using fresh herbs.

This first show in this series was Episode-1410- 12 Herbs Every Modern Survivalist Should Grow, so if you don’t see your favorite herb here, it may have been covered in that episode.

The truth is I could go on an list 12 more off the top of my head but these 12 will do so much and ask so little of you that is why I chose them for today’s show.  We may in fact do one more show in this series.

Join me Today As I Discuss the Following 18 Herbs You Should be Growing

  1. Lemon Balm
  2. Peppermint
  3. Comfrey
  4. Dill
  5. Sage
  6. Thyme
  7. Calendula
  8. Rosemary
  9. Bee Balm
  10. Roses
  11. Lavender
  12. Marsh Mallow

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Also remember we have an expert council you can address your calls to. If you do this you should email me right after your call at jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with expert council call in the subject line. In the body of your email tell me that you just called in a question for the council and what number you called in from. I will then give the call priority when I screen calls.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.