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!
I’ll be brief, as I’m right up against my Monday deadline to turn in my manuscript for:The Ultimate Prepper’s Survival Guide — An Advanced Preparedness Handbook for Uncertain Times. This is a nonfiction book that is scheduled for release in (or before) October, 2020.
The only prepping that I got done this past week was a bit more chainsawing. Oh and I bought and swapped a few pre-1899 antique cartridge guns. Now, on to my wife Lily’s weekly report…
Avalanche Lily Reports:
This week…, Hmmm… I harvested my Alaskan/Yukon corn and brought it into the house to continue drying. I’m not impressed with it. I tried to harvest it when it was young to eat fresh. It was not sweet. Then, I waited a couple of weeks and it had matured and was too starchy to eat fresh. So either, I missed the fresh eating window when my mom and dad were visiting here, or it’s just not what I want for a fresh eating corn. Honestly, I have grown this corn for three years, but wasn’t interested in trying to eat it fresh, until this year. I’m kind of disappointed. I was growing it during the past few years to increase my seed supply of it in case we would need it in the future. A friend gave me about five cobs of it a few years back. I also have not eaten it as a dried corn, yet. After it has dried this fall, I will make corn bread from it and see what we think of it as a dried corn. I am growing Mandan corn to see what I think of that as a potential dried corn meal. I checked on it on Friday afternoon. It is beautiful. I think I will be harvesting it on Sunday and drying it out in the house. I will also be doing more research this coming winter for a good fresh eating corn for our region.
I harvested my mature French Green beans and put them into the green house to continue drying. They will be used for seeds for this coming year’s crop. We really like French beans for fresh eating and freezing. I still have another patch growing for fresh eating as long as the growing season lasts.
I harvested some summer crookneck squash and froze a gallon’s worth. It’s interesting how around here it’s never ripe until the very end of the summer. This year it is doing better than ever. I usually only had enough to eat a few meals with but this year I will be getting more than enough for freezing and perhaps canning
Speaking of canning, recently our propane company came and refilled our tank. The service man mentioned that our level was really low compared to the usual. I just said, “Hmm. Okay”, I didn’t tell him why it was probably so low. I know it was low from all of the canning we’ve been doing lately. Have any of you readers canned over an “open” fire? I’m thinking about doing that and would like to hear of others experiences with it. I’d appreciate your comments concerning this, or even a full article that we could publish from someone?
I harvested some of my tomatoes/brought into the house green tomatoes from some clearly nearly dead tomato vines. The tomatoes were at risk for rot, and bugs were beginning to attack them. I have others out there of which their greenery is looking healthier, thus those tomatoes can remain outside longer until the threat of frost arrives.
I harvested the most ripe of the spaghetti squash. For my first ever time of growing this, I got about 30 of them. A few rotted on me, because, I guess I didn’t check on their ripeness soon enough and we’ve been really wet, lately. Those I will retrieve seeds from, for next year. I’ve still got a few green ones out there that I will let grow a little longer.
In the greenhouse, I threshed and sifted the seeds from the large chaff of turnip, mizuna and kale. I will winnow them with the fan later.
We have had a pack rat in the greenhouse, too, during the last two weeks. So I had to reorganize it, and search to make sure that there wasn’t a nest anywhere and make sure that there was no place for it to build a nest. I had been leaving the doors open day and night during the summer because it was too hot in there during the day and I just didn’t close the doors at night. The rat must have just been visiting during the night, since no nest was found. I swept up it’s waste and sprayed down all of the shelves (it smells better in there already) and will now close the doors at night from here on out. It’s too cool now day and night to leave the doors open, anyway. I also walked the perimeter outside of the greenhouse looking for holes in the gravel that the beastie could squeeze under the foundation and enter the green house, but there wasn’t any.
Miss Violet harvested the very tiny onion bulbs from the onion seeds I planted in trays and kept in the green house all summer. Their greens completely dried out and, I assume, caused the bulb to go dormant. The bulbs were put in a paper bag and I hope they don’t continue to dry out and turn to paper over the winter. Question for those in the know: Do onion bulbs have to experience cold and dormancy for a few months before re-sprouting and continuing growing again, or can they be put back into soil to continue growing, now? And, how does one keep them from turning to paper over the winter?
I’ve begun pruning the spent canes in my very large red raspberry patch.
I’m in the midst of proof-reading the last half of Jim’s manuscript. I am really enjoying the task. There are very few typos, mistakes or content issues, and am learning and gleaning more information from my incredibly intelligent and insightful husband’s writings.
The girls and I squeezed in a couple of flat land walks this week.
The cats and traps have done their jobs well. The mouse population in the house appears to have dropped dramatically. Yes!
I also spent time following world events… The perfect storm is approaching and is nearer every day. We need to be repenting and confessing on behalf of our country’s sins and for ourselves. We need to be praying for ourselves our families, friends and other believers, non-believers and for government leaders. We all need to be asking God to speak to us to help us discern His voice and to hear Him and His instructions clearly. We need to be reading the WORD of God so we know who He is and what He requires of us and what is coming upon this earth. We need to be preparing every day for the coming famine, wars, chaos, and not being able to buy or sell. Every day is an opportunity to put away some food, to acquire needed prep items and to practice skills and to get into better physical shape. I pray for you all that you will hear the Lord’s voice that you will endure and persevere in your prepping and in your walk with the Lord and in the days that are coming.
May you all have a very blessed and safe week.
– Avalanche Lily, Rawles
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As always, please share your own successes and hard-earned wisdom in the Comments.