Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. Steadily, we work on meeting our prepping goals. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities. They also often share their planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, property improvements, and food storage. This is something akin to our Retreat Owner Profiles, but written incrementally and in detail, throughout the year. We always welcome you to share your own successes and wisdom in the Comments. Let’s keep busy and be ready!


Dear SurvivalBlog Readers:

This week I concentrated on writing, but I still found time for some firewood cutting and hauling. On Wednesday, I pruned up some-low-hanging limbs on a half dozen trees on one our horse trails. And I pitched in on pitching some manure.Yesterday, I hauled some sand to mix in to one of Lily’s garden beds.

Next week I plan to drop another large dead standing tree and begin hauling, crosscutting, and splitting firewood, in earnest. The local First Cutting of hay should be available soon. So I can add hay hauling to my “to do” list.  Oh, and I made repair to one of our quad trailers. Work is never done on a ranch. Aside for the inevitable machinery entropy, I find it all quite satisfying.

It appears that we’ll be getting some rain showers today and tomorrow. That is good news, since the soil in our pastures was starting to look dry.

Avalanche Lily Reports:

This week, the beginning of the week, I was still recovering from the cold, so I was fairly quiet for the first few days.  I spent a lot of time on the internet, too much time!  We received four more grape vines in the mail from Stark’s (Concords).  I planted them right away in our baby vineyard.

Later in the week,  I pulled weeds from my strawberry beds.  I walked along the north side of the greenhouse looking to make sure that no creatures were digging under it to enter in.  There were lots of baby trees growing too close to it’s wall and decided that then and there was the time to pull them.  I pulled bracken ferns in addition to baby fir and cedar trees.  Why is it that trees like to grow where you don’t want them, and do not grow where you wish they would?

I weed whacked a section of the orchard and a section of the main garden.  The children and I, cleaned up manure from our horse arena, loafing area, and an area south of the small animal shed.  Some of this manure was placed in the old, retired strawberry beds of which it’s soil is being built up for next year’s garden.  I cleaned the chicken coop.  I pulled weeds in the onion bed, and the children helped me pull weeds in the cabbage bed.

The sand that Jim transported for me, is for a bed being prepared for Sweet Potato slips that should be arriving in the mail any day now.  I tried to grow sweet potatoes a few years back and only got three very small ones.  This time, I’ve really prepared the soil and will be hooping them to give them more warmth and dryness.  We eat a lot of sweet potatoes.  I pulled Knapweed alongside of our driveway.

In the house, I organized the drawers of our home school supplies/art supplies cabinet, and made homemade granola cereal.  The children and I did some mountain biking around the ranch.

This coming week, I hope to do some hiking and fishing, in addition to weeding and transporting manure to four various beds.  I also need to finish weed whacking the orchard and the walkways of the main garden.

This coming weekend, the weather is supposed to be very cold and rainy for June.  The peaks and passes above 5,000 feet are even expecting some snow!!!  If you live near that elevation in Idaho, Montana, Alberta, or British Columbia, please plan accordingly to provide protection for the plants and trees in your gardens and orchards.

Blessings, – Jim Rawles and Avalanche Lily, Rawles



The Latimer Homestead had a harsh thunderstorm with hail and heavy rain this week that postponed some of our plans, including a garden expansion and planting of peppers. We got the expansion area weeded but were unable to get the soil loosened or the water lines and plastic mulch laid down before the storm came and turned it into a swamp. We’re thankful we did not lose all of our fruit to the wind and hail; some in our area did lose everything and have much worse damage. Working the garden extension will be a priority this week along with trimming some tree limbs that have grown up against the house eve and weeding the medicinal/herb garden, which has been somewhat neglected for a week or two while we put in the main vegetable garden.

o o o

As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.


  1. This week I finally finished our ‘Grid-Down Plan’ listing our supplies and exactly where they are. Yes we printed it!

    My wife is very familiar with all preps/procedures and could execute this plan even if I was not present. Plan A proves emergency power for 12 hours per day for 1st week using our Honda 2000i inverter. Then Plan B kicks in and life will get harder.

    The categories addressed are: Cash , Water, Water purification, Food, Cooking, Lighting, Flashlights and headlamps , Candles, Batteries, Emergency power, Fuel for Generator, Heating , Cooling, Communications, Emergency medical supplies including antibiotics, Prescription medications, Sanitation/Hygiene , Cleaning , Tarps/laths , Safety/Security, Pet preps, Bug-Out (only for a local life threatening event).

  2. Central/western Wisconsin: tomato and pepper plants are in. Also red onions and potatoes, beets carrots radishes and beans. When the garlic is harvested that will be sowed with something. More asparagus plants planted also.
    Running low on garden area we purchased grow bags and planted more peppers in those, which can be taken in this fall.
    Recognizing the advantage of having a light-duty quiet cordless chainsaw a 20 volt model is now mine, very sturdy and uses the same batteries as compatible tools such as a drill.

  3. Arkansas pulled carrots and canned, and pulled garlic to hang and dry. started small tool shed for raised bed area. planted sweet potatoes. baby chicks and ducks 1 week old and no deaths yet. be aware ups drivers may go on strike after their contract ends the last day of july. shipping may be delayed +/or more expensive

  4. re:
    Sweet potatoes

    Spirilized == blanched, topped on a salad. If you consume nightshades, spoodles topped with marinara.

    Spirilized, pattied or pancaked. Topped with a savory gravy.

    Thick slices on the BBQ.

    Nutrient dense all the way!

  5. Thankful your homestead survived HJL.

    I emptied the rain barrel watering transplants and am now waiting for a rainy day for a refill. I’ve transplanted some current bushes that I erroneously thought dead last fall. They need more light. Planted some peppermint, perennial flowers, lemon balm, and a few more revived Regusa Rosa. Continue to battle Knotweed!

    Finally managed to get a truckload of trash to the transfer station. The extensively wet spring allowed me to dig out some trash from before our time.

    Still painting away to spruce up the old buildings.

    I bought a small rechargeable weed wacker that is lightweight and quick to use. We still have the push weed wacker for more serious jobs.

    Broke my larger shovel this week and realized how important having backup tools can be. I have put extra shovels on my list.

    Am hauling rocks to build some stonewalls up again and use to terrace a few small gardens.

  6. Set most of peppers out and emptied one compost bin here in the Peoples Republic. Spent some time at new house in Redoubt Northeast painting, repairing trellis, assessing sun situation for next summer planting. Made up beds there as, after we take our grandkids to Niagara Falls and on a sleeper train in Canada, family will gather for a first look at the place.
    Investigated chainsaws.

  7. Planted 66 more sweet potatoes last week. Probably have somewhere near 75 or so in the ground.
    Went fishing yesterday and caught 40-50 crappies (lost count) and 19 bullheads that weighed 1 1/2 to 2lbs each. haven’t seen bullheads that big since I was a kid. Lots of fish in the freezer now!

    Clobbered 3 large bass too, cain’t keep those out of that pond according to the owners rules. They probably went 3 to 5 lbs each and fought like the devil, big jumps and dives. lots of fun.

  8. Here in n.w. redoubt planted 2nd bed red potatoes ,pruned trees , weeded medicinal bed , and always fun cleaned chicken coop lol. Got some fishing in on the river .

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