Editors’ Prepping Progress

To be prepared for a crisis, every Prepper must establish goals and make long-term and short-term plans. In this column, the SurvivalBlog editors review their week’s prep activities and planned prep activities for the coming week. These range from healthcare and gear purchases to gardening, ranch improvements, bug out bag fine-tuning, 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! Jim Reports: I’ve just returned to the Rawles …




Still Prepping After All These Years, by Tony T.

I have written this to encourage others that may be getting weary with the never-ending labors of preparation. I have divided this into four parts: 1. Learning from my family. 2. Adjusting to my own family. 3. Persevering through the years 4. Where we are now. Learning From My Family I’ll start by describing my father and his family. I was raised in a family that by modern standards would be considered preppers, at least by some. Prepping is not universally defined, to my knowledge. Be that as it may, I say we were preppers, but were unaware. It started …




Gardening When It Counts – Part 2, by A.K.

(Continued from Part 1. This concludes the article.) Garlic deserves a place in a survival garden. Both for it’s culinary attributes as well as medicinal qualities, garlic is a champ. Plant the largest nicest-looking cloves you can find, as you want your crop to have good genetics. After harvest, dry the crop carefully. Store the biggest heads of garlic in a separate place to replant for the next crop. Either soft neck or hard neck garlic will work. Hard neck garlic produces green scapes which need to be cut off; these can be used in cooking. Hard neck garlic is …




Family Winter Greenhouse, by T.M.P.

We moved to the American Redoubt five years ago, from Northern California. We wanted something located away from any big cities, with some acreage, well water, a septic system, a big shop, and with wild game. While surfing the net for real estate which would be suitable for long term sustainability after a SHTF event, I found a listing of a property with a description of amenities that sounded ideal. In fact, on the way to see the property with our Realtor I commented to my wife that it really sounded too good to be true. Included in the description …




Rhubarb: Four Book Reviews, by S.A.

When I was a child in elementary school, I always felt cheated when the cafeteria served rhubarb pie masquerading as cherry pie for dessert. Long time gardeners know all about rhubarb, but I’ve encountered a fair number of young people who tell me that they’ve never tasted rhubarb. However, from a survival perspective, rhubarb is a perennial worth considering. You could grow it in a a front yard flowerbed and it’s doubtful the homeowner’s association (HOA) would recognize it. It’s easy to grow, nutritious, stealthy, forgiving (last year I transplanted plants from one bed to another in early Texas summer, …




Are You Building Capacity or Capability?, by 3ADScout

First let’s define “capacity.” Capacity is how much of something we have. Think about your “capacity” in terms of beans, bullets and band-aids. For food, your capacity might be 72-hours’ worth of food in a bug-out-bag, or 1-year supply for 4 people. Your capacity for bullets might be 1,000 rounds for rifles and 500 rounds per pistol. For band-aids, you might have 10 boxes of 4×4 gauze pads, 2 boxes of gauze rollers and 2 rolls of tape enough to dress one small wound for about a week. When your capacity runs out, you have no more unless you somehow …




Garden Lessons – Part 2, by R.R.

(Continued from Part 1. This installment concludes the article.) There are numerous videos on the web about this process in building your seed-starting set up. It’s simple and again a one-time effort and expense. I’ve never even had to change a bulb after three years. I also have a surge protector that the three lights and three seed mats are plugged into. I then plug that surge protector into a timer so the lights and mats turn on/off automatically for around 10-12 hours each day. The next thing you have to plan is: when to start what  seeds or seedlings. …




Gardening Lessons – Part 1, by R.R.

So… You think that you can garden? Got the books, got some seeds, and you grew something once. Sure, it’s easy! Well, good for you. It hasn’t come easy for this guy. I’m the so called green-thumb in my house. House plants, no problem. Landscaping around the home, got that. Garden as if our life depends on, not so much. I managed lawn and landscaping crews for seven years during and after college. We did some major commercial work and I know more than the average homeowner about these things. I have to admit that vegetable gardening has been a …




Life in the 12th Century, by Edge

The following article may offend some miserable gits with no sense of humour. If you are a miserable git, then you have been warned. Don’t come whining to me. To envisage a life after electricity, we must look back to a time without it. Most people can think as far back as the American Civil War for a lifestyle but that is modern history with Morse Code (1844), Railways (1804) and Steam Ships (1787) and not where we need to look at all. We need to go right back. In the 12th century there was a rural population of around …




Our Garden Produce Roadside Stand, by R.J.

For the past 10 years, my wife and I have been selling our produce out of a small (4 feet wide, 4 feet deep, and 5 feet high) open-faced vegetable stand which is located on our property next to a public road. The stand contains a variety of produce, priced to sell. It is unmanned, thereby relying on human honesty to pay the asking price. Our efforts have been most rewarding in more ways then just giving us a little extra spending money. We are eating better, have more meaning in life, are healthier, and often have discussions with our …




Growing Shitake Mushrooms on Logs, by Dave S.

My absolute favorite mushroom to eat is the shiitake. They are expensive to buy in the store, but the good news is that they are easy to grow at home. These flavorful and meaty delights are one of the most common mushrooms in the world and also the one with the most health benefits. Unlike any green plant, they have all of the essential amino acids. And they are  good source of vitamins. Shiitake mushrooms are great for building your immune system and are antibacterial, antifungal, and antiviral. They are a powerhouse of nutrients and contain about 60% carbohydrates, 20% …




It is Planting Time – Part 3, by L.R.

(This installment concludes the 3-part article series.) In Part 2, we discussed the variety of foods you may want to plant when vegetable gardening. Plant what you like to eat, but also be aware that different foods have different caloric content. If you want to preserve food as a hedge against a grid down, you may want to grow a variety of high calorie foods like corn, beans, potatoes and peas. We also looked at two popular methods of preserving food, freezing and canning (although you may want to experiment with dehydrating and pickling as well). Additional Thoughts If you …




It is Planting Time – Part 2, by L.R.

PART 2 In Part 1, my goal was to share with you the value in raising a home vegetable garden, especially if you consider food resupply in a grid down situation. Hopefully, I encouraged you to seriously think about raising your own food and to get started with learning valuable gardening skills. I also wanted you to be realistic in meeting your gardening goals and not to expect perfection especially with your first gardening efforts. In Part 2, I’d like to share some perspective on what vegetables you may want to plant and consider options on how to preserve your …




It is Planting Time- Part 1, by L.R.

PART 1 (Of 3) With the end of winter and the frost date for my area passed, my thoughts naturally turn toward my vegetable garden and this year’s crop. During the harvest last year, I saved a number of seeds for planting again this year, I also saved a ton of money purchasing seeds from our local Co-op left over from the end of last year’s growing season. Properly stored, I’ve found they germinate at very respectable rates and I have always had good luck planting them. I’ve been an avid home gardener for better than twenty years; that’s certainly …




Preparedness Lessons from the 1930s – Part 1, by J. E.

It’s one or two years after an EMP attack and you are safely tucked away in your retreat somewhere in the middle of nowhere. Your storage foods have mostly been used and your high tech electronics is useless. The really bad stuff is mostly past. Now it’s try to stay fed and alive and pray that civilization as you know it is coming back. You’re going to have to work your environment to live. Ever wonder what life might be like to Homestead? What would it really be like to have no running water, electricity, sewer, newspaper or Internet? No …