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March is a Critical Month for preparation

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posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 10:16 AM
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Hello fellow survivalist, patriots, ex-patriots, and declared home grown, domestic terrorists. March is a critical time to prepare for the coming year and even next winter.

No matter where your bunker may be here in the 57 states of the USA, your mind should be focused on planting, prepping, maintainance, and cutting wood. Here in NC, I just finished planting Green English or Garden Peas, Red and Green Leaf lettuce, Cabbage...Red Acre and Flat Dutch, and next week I will plant potatoes and onions and beets.

Now laugh if you may, but my decision for planting above ground crops today and below grown or root crops next week is based upon the Moon phases and fertile astrological signs. According to the Farmer's Almanac, today, Saturday, and Sunday are the best times to plant above ground crops. If you don't have an Almanac, get one... a great source of info and good quick reading in the Johnny House as each article is written to last just about 5 minutes. A really good Almanac will actually have a hole in the upper left corner to hang on a nail for easy access.

All joking aside, the time to prepare the ground with compost, turning of soil to dry out, and even plant is now... of course if you are further north...prepping the soil is about all you can do. Now inside, you can plant seeds in planters for transplant later. Styrofoam cups, egg cartons, and my favorite...cheap roasting pans that even come with a clear serving cover that makes a nice little green house are great.

As for next winter's firewood... now is the time to cut. that way you get a full 9 months of curing and seasoning of the wood so it burns hot. Plus, you beat the heat of summer...cutting wood on a 90 degree summer day is no fun. Much better to do so while it is still cool. Besides that, the woods have not yet sprouted their leaves and it is easier to see and maneuver through the woods.

Another chore on your list is cleaning and readying your power equipment. Check oil levels, put new gas in. A lot of states are selling 10% ethanol gas...this gas will break down in as little as 20-30 days lining your gas lines with a glaze, clogging your carbeurator, and generall causing a lot of unneccessary trouble. This can be avoided by adding a stabilizer to your gas.

One last thing to add to your list is livestock. Spring tends to bring lots of new babies to the barnyard... and to the auction markets. Now that the worst of winter is over, it is a good time to add goats and kids, pigs and piglets, chickens and chicks to your small farm lineup... the numbers are abundant and at the beginning of spring demand is high. You could wait for better prices as demand wanes...but the selection and variety dwindle also.

Get those fences and pens in shape before the prime growing season hits...and with cold weather on the retreat from south to north, go a. and get the livestock you need...even if the barn is only 3/4s done...a roof is really all you need. Also, look around on craigslist or posts at the feed store for cheap hay leftover from last fall. It maynot be top horse quality, but it will work fine for goats, cows, and bedding for other livestock...even mulch for the garden.

Also, now is the latest time to really do a good job of planting fruit trees and shrubs without much worry and maintainance. The trees are dormant or asleep, but the roots are still growing...growing those critical fiborous hair-like roots that will sustain it through the summer when it gets hot and dry. Too often, people wait until May or Early June to plant the trees when they are in bloom and look good...then it suddenly gets hot and dry and the plants die from heat stress. Plant now...I would not even try after the end of March unless you like hauling water everyday.

By addressing these critical items now...by next winter, you will have a full root cellar and freezer, a barn or shed full of meat literally on the hoof, fresh eggs, a warm fire to heat and cook with...and with the economy still in the tank and war in the middle east and a real potential for $5.00 a gallon gas by summer...we may need these things.

Any other suggestions fellow ATSers? Come on, we have some really great resources here.




posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 10:26 AM
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Great post!!

I live up north a bit from you, and have started clearing my beds, getting compost ready, and de-weeding the beds...This will be my 2nd year but it is definitely too early to plant anything yet... Gonna wait another 2 weeks or so until I start my seedlings...

I also went to check out prices on getting a truckload of dirt, but the gardening place isnt even open yet lol... our soil here is almost all clay and rocks... very hard to try and grow stuff in it, so ive built raised beds, with a good 6" dug out of them, waiting on soil to fill in

I also need to order some new heirloom seeds(going with rareseeds again, they were great last year)

I plan on building a chicken coop in the backyard, I have a space fenced off, just need to build a coop inside of it... I wanted too last year, but the gardening experience took most of my time(building beds, making a 200gal rain barrel setup)..

Any suggestions on coop size? I only plan on having 6 hens at tops... I have about 6 sheets of plywood laying around for this project, have most of the supplies to build, except roofing supplies.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 10:34 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


Now, I am not one who normally toys with the Idea of needing a BOB. But you seriously convinced me to do so and start preparing. Not one person in my household will support me on this though. At all. So I have got to start preparing for myself, my husband my two kids and my grandfather.. I may be able to talk him into this.. I did talk him into getting a generator…



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 10:41 AM
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Originally posted by morder1
I also went to check out prices on getting a truckload of dirt, but the gardening place isnt even open yet lol... our soil here is almost all clay and rocks... very hard to try and grow stuff in it, so ive built raised beds, with a good 6" dug out of them, waiting on soil to fill in


Check around for someone with horses. Very often they will let you come by and take a truck load of aged manure for nothing (or a few bucks, but way cheaper than a garden store). Check Craig's List or your local farm store, too.


Originally posted by morder1
I plan on building a chicken coop in the backyard, I have a space fenced off, just need to build a coop inside of it... I wanted too last year, but the gardening experience took most of my time(building beds, making a 200gal rain barrel setup)..

Any suggestions on coop size? I only plan on having 6 hens at tops... I have about 6 sheets of plywood laying around for this project, have most of the supplies to build, except roofing supplies.


Check out Back Yard Chickens Everything you need to know to get started with chickens.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 11:30 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I'm tilling and planting tomorrow!
Should be a big garden with taters, beans, peas, corn, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and more.

Already got all my new fruit trees and bushes in over the winter time. Next, I gotta start fishing to bring them home and stock my own pond. I have a lot of bream, and a few bass, but I want more bass and some catfish and carp.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 11:32 AM
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mustache march is always in prep.



good post. never can be too ready



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 11:35 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


make sure you have some backup medical supplies and or any medication you need. learn about herbal remedies and i would recommend at least one good medicinal herbs book on hand. make sure your teeth are in top health and get any issues taken care of so you can eat.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 11:48 AM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


I'm tilling and planting tomorrow!
Should be a big garden with taters, beans, peas, corn, tomatoes, peppers, onions, and more.

Already got all my new fruit trees and bushes in over the winter time. Next, I gotta start fishing to bring them home and stock my own pond. I have a lot of bream, and a few bass, but I want more bass and some catfish and carp.



You are a. of me on the gardening....but, have ordered my baby chicks for delivery end of March....building coops now. Grapes and wild berries should be starting to grow soon with warmer weather. Two of my goats are preggers at the moment. Pray for females for me.

Also have bream bass and catfish stocked in my pond. And added a small steel storage building to the homestead.

I'll be so glad when winter caves fully into spring.....



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 11:58 AM
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reply to post by Destinyone
 


Well, I was supposed to have beehives this year as well, but when I went to order, they were already sold out of worker bees for the season. They still had queens, but I decided to just wait a season.

So, I'm a. on gardening, but behind on bees and chicks! And, I didn't convince my wife to go for the chicks yet. We want some, but we have a lot of predators in the yard, and we're not sure we can keep them safe, and she can't take losing them repeatedly.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:08 PM
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reply to post by getreadyalready
 


Not to distract, but your post just hit me in funny way first with the worker bees ( I envision an office cube farm) and then

I didn't convince my wife to go for the chicks yet. We want some



On topic... Good work on the prep. I wish I had more land to work with in my suburban hideaway. I'm limited to a square foot garden plot behind the swingset.

Thanks for giving me an unintended laugh.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:08 PM
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Originally posted by getreadyalready
reply to post by Destinyone
 


Well, I was supposed to have beehives this year as well, but when I went to order, they were already sold out of worker bees for the season. They still had queens, but I decided to just wait a season.

So, I'm a. on gardening, but behind on bees and chicks! And, I didn't convince my wife to go for the chicks yet. We want some, but we have a lot of predators in the yard, and we're not sure we can keep them safe, and she can't take losing them repeatedly.


You might be able to purchase a hive from a local commercial honey producer. You can at least check it out.

I'm going to check into getting some farmed tilapia for my pond. They grow bigger than bream, and very tasty.

I'm building my chicken coop inside my enclosed goat pen for extra protection. My baby chicks will be between $3 to $5 ea. depending on variety my supplier gets. You could check on Craigs list for an enclosed dog run, used, they are cheap cheap cheap.....then put chicken wire over the top to totally enclose it.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:18 PM
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reply to post by Destinyone
 


Ya, I joined a local beekeepers group, and went to 1 meeting so far. I'll try to get a good deal on something at the next meeting.

As for the chicken run, I could try to totally enclose it, but we have foxes, racoons, hawks, and owls that we see nightly, and who knows what is out there we don't see.
I have a big shephard dog that runs the yard, but he comes inside at night. They would probably be ok, but it would only take one morning of waking up to feathers and devastation, and my wife would be totally off the farming gig! I'm trying hard to ease her into it and not have any setbacks.


@ jibeho
Yes,
Trying to convince her we need more chicks!



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:18 PM
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Potatoes planted yesterday and today. Broad beans, lettuce and tomatoes sown in the polytunnel yesterday along with a variety of herbs. I chose autumn planting for my onions and garlic and they have come up a treat. Today I also mulched my fruit bushes with horse manure.

Jobs in the next week or so is to rebuild the fruit cage and maintain the wooden boards of the raised beds.

Roll on spring.
))



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:28 PM
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reply to post by morder1
 


There are several solutions to a chicken coop and space problems.

The first and most obvious is a chicken tractor...basicallyan A framed chicken pen on skids or wheels, the bottom very close to the ground and ideal for 6-12 chickens. Y save on space, every day you move the pen so the chickens get new ground-bugs-grass, they fertilize the yard and eat the grubs and ticks.

Another solution is to build your small pen for 6 chickens above the compost pile...using a heavy mesh bottom in which the chickens can walk on, but their dropping fall through and into the compost pile...naturally fertilizing the compost and since you will be turning it weekly, no bad odors.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:33 PM
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Herb gardens are a very important resource for any home and homestead. We have our herb garden out fron by the walk and arbor...decorative and functional. We grow a wide variety of herbs...always the Italian herbs as my wife is a foreign girl from New Jersey, we also grow sage, rosemary, thyme, and a small host of medicinal herbs... and lots of garlic. As of now, we have garlic wintering over, oregano, and rosemary...once the threat of frost passes, then we do the tender stuff...like basil.



posted on Mar, 2 2012 @ 12:34 PM
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I want to leave a suggestion:

If you want a well-rounded guide to raising farm-animals such as cows, chickens, dairy goats, etc i suggest the "Storey's Guide to..." The are easy to read and very informative. For instance, chickens, done right, are not that costly and they have good return. I suggest Wyandottes, which are a well-rounded breed (layers and meat producers). It's only my husband and I right now so just for two people, you shouldn't need more than 8 or so chickens.



posted on Mar, 3 2012 @ 08:21 AM
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Originally posted by AlreadyGone
Herb gardens are a very important resource for any home and homestead. We have our herb garden out fron by the walk and arbor...decorative and functional. We grow a wide variety of herbs...always the Italian herbs as my wife is a foreign girl from New Jersey, we also grow sage, rosemary, thyme, and a small host of medicinal herbs... and lots of garlic. As of now, we have garlic wintering over, oregano, and rosemary...once the threat of frost passes, then we do the tender stuff...like basil.


Absolutely! I have huge bushes of sage and rosemary - sometimes its a struggle to contain them. ;-) I also have massive amounts of comfrey - this is easier to maintain because I use it as a liquid feed. But that is not the only use it has - one of the old names for it is 'bone knit'.

Last year I was at a loss with what to do with some left over rosemary trimmings - until I found a recipe for rosemary and bay beer. Very nice! Last christmas was a bit of a blur!!!


This year I'm building up my stock of savoury - gorgeous with beans and in stews. Its also a great companion plant with beans, so am planting summer savoury with broad beans this year in the hope that it diminishes the black fly issues I have at the plot. Pinching out the tops just doesn't seem to help and I don't like to spray with anything more than garlic water.



posted on Mar, 3 2012 @ 08:28 AM
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reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


what are you preparing for?



posted on Mar, 3 2012 @ 07:41 PM
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reply to post by sitchin
 


What am I preparing for?

I have always been an independent minded person. I do not like to ask for help, and if I can not do it or provide it...I will do without.

Myparents and actually my entire family geneology is made up of freethinkers, pioneers, rebels, and moonshiners. We never asked for help, certainly never, ever asked for a government handout...we just figured out another way to make ends meet.

My parents grew up during the Great Depression and WWII and were poor... and I mean sho' nuf dirt floor poor. They grew up knowing what hunger was, what it meant to get up before light and work in the fields all day just to come to the house and have to chop wood, work the garden, draw water from the well, and fix and repair and putup so you would have something to eat or wear tommorow.

They instilled those values in me. I am prepared for most any emergency. Surely, the world may not end tommorow... but a full pantry and freezer, some cash buried around the barn, extra tarps, rope, firewood, camp stoves, wood stoves, a few gallons of water stored here and there have helped us make it through more than a few Hurricanes, Tornadoes, Snow Storms, Ice Storms, and some times when we just didn't have enough money.

My favorite story happened back around Y2K. I had been putting stuff up all along, had plenty of matches, barter items, food, firewood etc. When Jan 1, 2000 arrived and nothing happened.... my neighbor stopped by for some friendly joking at my expense.

"What are you gonna do with all those matches and beans?"...he chided.

"Well, I will use them eventually... it might come a Hurricane or a Snowstorm."

"Snowstorm? Here in North Carolina? We're lucky to get 6 inches."

I said "Mike, you never know. Anyway, I'll be ready."

Two weeks later...North Carolina had a record 24" snowfall that shut the entire central part of NC down for a week...stores and roads were literally closed for days as we are simply not set up to deal with that kind of storm.

It was still snowing after 2 days but I was in my cabin, the wood stove blazing hot...cooking stew...drinking some of my barter wine... had Jimmy Buffet and a live webcam of Jamaica on my computer...when I heard a knock on the door...

"Hi there, Mike."



posted on Mar, 3 2012 @ 08:14 PM
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Originally posted by sitchin
reply to post by AlreadyGone
 


what are you preparing for?


Yellowstone. Aliens. Greece or Brazil-like inflation and breakdown. Revolution. Terrorism. Fascism. Gulf Oil Spill. Global Warming, Global Ice Age. Nibiru. 2012, 2020. Singularity in 2035. NWO. RFID. 1984. Y2K. Hurricane. Tornadoes. Earthquake. Tidal Wave. Red Dawn. Zombies. Contagion. Bird Flu, Swine Flu, or any Pandemic.

Hmmm. well that's just off the top of my ., but being prepared is just prudent. Even FEMA and the Federal Govt recommend at least 7 days of preparations.

www.ready.gov...

www.safenow.org...

www.fema.gov...

Red Cross preparedness



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