As preppers work to make progress to achieve prepping goals, we took some actions this week too. The SurvivalBlog editors made some plans  earlier in the week and now reflect upon these. Below, the editors share what we each accomplished. Please write to us in the comments and tell us what you did this week to get your preps in place and to be ready.
Hello SurvivalBlog Readers. This week the weather at the Rawles Ranch was cold and rainy. We even broke down and built a fire in the wood stove to take the edge off the cold in the house. Thankfully, though, we didn’t have any freezing night-time temperatures.
Family obligations took us away from home at the beginning of the week and again at the end of the week. We didn’t get as much done as we planned.
This is what we did to prepare this week:
- Lily planted the blueberries and a Bing Cherry sapling and yet another bed of asparagus. We love asparagus!
- We planted zucchini seeds in the greenhouse for an earlier harvest.
- Three cattle were delivered to the butchers.
- We’ve continued limbing/parking out a forested section of our ranch for both aesthetics and fire safety. We hoped to cut more firewood this week, but not much was done. However, Jim and the children did haul slash and gathered and stacked some of the cut rounds.
- Jim and Lily shared and completed the tilling of the garden with our Troy-Built rototiller . Lily is the garden planter. So far she has planted red, yellow, and bunching onions, acorn squash, Hubbard squash, and more yellow and green zucchini squash. She decided to gamble with the weather, hoping that by the time the squash grows out of the ground, we won’t have any more freezing nights. But we have plenty of plant covers if frost threatens. Here in The Un-named Valley, summer night temperatures are typically in the 40s and 50s, and frosts can occur at any time during the summer. Thankfully, so far, since Lily’s been here, the earliest killing frost in the Fall that we’ve seen was on August 17th. Off hand, we don’t remember the latest frost date of the spring. Most killing frosts have occurred in late September or in October. Therefore we buy cold weather hardy varieties of vegetables and cover them to extend our seasons. Our greenhouse produces for about nine months of the year.
- Jim helped Lily set up a T-Post arbor for our climbing beans that still need to be planted.
- Dandelion roots were dug, cleaned, chopped, and put into the dehydrator along with plantain leaves.
The forcast is for Sunny, warmer weather for the American Redoubt this coming week. We are so looking forward to it!!
May you all have a very blessed weekend!
This week, the Latimer Homestead made some good progress but had a few delays and plan adjustments as well, mainly due to unexpected windy and rainy weather. We did get the cooler setup and functioning on the home, so now both the food storage and the family will be able to endure summer temperatures. Following this week’s rains, we thoroughly weeded the vegetable, strawberry, and tea/herb gardens. The rain softened the ground enabling us to pull weeds up by the roots. We didn’t plan this, but plans change. The winds broke a few small dead branches of trees, so we took that as a reminder to go ahead and do some further pruning, especially of the trees around the house and garden areas.
Gardening For Livestock
As is often the case, the weather forecasters missed the mark. We expected relatively hot, dry weather this week, but we only had a hint of this. Mostly, we have had wind and wet weather with some warmth and cool days intermingled. Still, five partial rows of cow pea cover crop were planted as the rain began. Because of the rain and winds, we did not get all of the cow peas planted or any of the sunflowers planted, but we did get the garden cleared and ready for planting. We’ll have to take another look at the weather this weekend before we make plans for next week.
The freeze dryer move and shelving was not completed. Regardless, the chamomile was blooming. So, Sarah and the children picked it and dehydrated it. This week, we produced about two quarts. There should be more next week. It looks like the calendula and other herbal and medicinal flowers are on their heels. Even with the freeze dryer temporarily out of commission, it’s always great to have multiple means for food preservation!
Again, we got a little too ambitious in our planning this week. The garden weeding, tree pruning, homestead maintenance, and the progress we made on planting the livestock feed garden took up most of our available time for prepping. Sarah still hopes to get her sewing area operational again, but it will have to come later.
Smoker Set Up and Used
Sarah did get the electric smoker set up and used this week though. It’s been awhile since it was in use, so she wanted to get back in the swing of using it before trying a new project she has in mind for preserving meat. She smoked a large turkey that was delicious, using fresh homegrown herbs on the turkey and smoking with apple wood from our family’s orchard!