Tag Archives: squash

Quick Garden Update 5-16-17

 

Just a few pictures of my garden over the weekend. Most plants are now producing and have been picking squash and zucchini for a while.

I am so ready for the tomatoes to get ripe.  We also have onions that should be close to pulling and jalapenos that have a good flavor to them. Hopefully we can make some salsa.

Our green beans are producing and the okra are starting to produce flowers. Definitely will have some uses for the okra… fried, sautéed, gumbo, jambalaya, and baked.

We picked some red potatoes. We tried potato boxes but never had any grow higher than the seed potato… but we still had a good crop from 16-18 plants. Next time, I will start the potatoes earlier to see if we can do a better crop. I am going to see what fall vegetables I can do with them.

If you have had success doing potato boxes, let me know what you did in order to grow potatoes higher than the seed.  Also, if anyone has had success in their garden, let us know. Pictures are always welcomed.

Thank you.

Go. Live your life, and enjoy your freedom.

Garden Update 5-6-17

The garden is growing. The squash and zucchini have already produced more than we can eat weekly. We just harvested our potatoes. Take a look at the garden and the veggies we have already picked.

 

(We already ate some of the potatoes before I even thought about getting pictures.)

Go. Live your life and enjoy your freedom.

Garden Update 4-24-17

This evening I picked 8 squash out of the garden.  I also started a YouTube channel and uploaded my very first Welcome to Freedom video… Its a little corny, but I am working on how to edit videos. Give me some time, and I will get better.

Please share your comments and subscribe to my YouTube Channel “Welcome to Freedom.”

 

Go, live life, and enjoy your freedom.

Thank you.

Food Storage: Prepper Style

Storing food for hard times, even the collapse of society as we know it, should be on everyone’s mind. There are more people living today than at any other 1 point in time, and there are more people now than all the people that have past, ever! With droughts, famines, severe weather, and cost of goods increasing, food will be hard to come by in the future.  How much should you store? How would you replenish your storage?

I like to watch different shows and videos talking about prepping for “doomsday,” extreme weather, collapse of society, civil unrest, and many other topics. Some of you reading the posts have experienced hard times and some have not. Those who have are more prepared to survive because of experience. Food is one of the necessary preps for other than ideal times to boost morale. But we have all seen the “preppers” that have gone overboard and ended up at the bottom of the ocean. Some individuals have stored food for 5-10 years or longer. Why? Are they using and rotating their storage so the food does not go bad or decrease in quality? I have been in houses where they owners bought so much food that they did not know what they had. Eventually, the jars of pickles turned white. Why? They bought too much, too often, and usually food they don’t even eat.

Many people say to have 3-6 months of food storage. This is fine depending on the situation. If it’s a hurricane, and you live in the coastal region that floods, then you are wasting your time and money. If you are in the midwest where tornadoes are prevalent and storing your food above ground, you are wasting your time and money. I laugh at the ideas that people have. If you are preparing for civil unrest and you live in an suburban or urban area and you are preparing to bunker in, then you better be well fortified. They riots in recent years have shown that the masses do not care if it is your property.

At any given time, we have  2-3 weeks of food. Our area is known for having wildfires and we will have to get out ASAP for that. On the other hand, the last tornado in our area has been more than 30 years.  Where we live is between a major Texas river and a ridgeline. It is rare for a tornado to hit such  spot based on geographical formations. I am not saying it will never happen, but it statistically low percentage.  Civil unrest would be the worst case for us outside a natural disaster. We do live in a neighborhood that houses are less than 150 feet apart. Also, we only have 2 ways in, not including heading out on the train tracks and crossing the train bridge. A river on the south and west sides, dense wooded area with steep terrain to our east, and a massive drainage ditch to our north,  it would not be hard to lockdown our neighborhood.  To stock up more than we could pack in our SUV and truck would be foolish.

When we leave during the initial stages, we would pick up supplies from various places that most would not think about. I do not share these ideas, nor have heard others ever mentioning these places on blogs or videos. Other preps for food we are doing is learning gardening. We are in our second year of gardening and doing quite well. We are making notes on how to improve on growing our crops, increasing the yield, and planting different vegetables that we will eat. You have to learn now to be able to have a chance later. Fishing and hunting are also ways we will be able to feed our family. I recently purchased a book, Wild Edible Plants of Texas. I will be using this book, finding the plants around us that we can pick to eat. I know this doesn’t seem that satisfying, but if it adds nutrition, then I will do it. I need to get out this summer and start looking for these plants and to try them. Remember, anything you gather, you definitely need to wash, just in case.

Now, if you are one of those that do have years of food stashed away, remember to rotate your stock so that you are not throwing money done the drain. Be aware of the possibility where you have to leave and you cannot carry all of your food storage with you. That goes for any preps.

If you have any thoughts on this, please reply to the blog to start a conversation.

Go, live life, and enjoy your freedom.

If you enjoy my posts, please follow me at https://welcometofreedomblog.wordpress.com . You do not need an account, just simply input your email to the follow field. I do not use your email for any other purpose besides for followers.

Garden 4-2-17

Over the last week, we have received about 3 inches of rain. This was great since my rain barrel was down below half full. We had some plants really take off and some plants that are not.

 

I line my rows with cardboard. Has anyone used yard clippings for mulch? I am using mine for compost but looking for free material for mulch.

This is a quick update. I wasn’t  able to do much this weekend with a tournament, rain, and just being exhausted. Over the next few weeks, I hope to have some more updates showing the rapid growth of the plants. Please check my other posts in the different categories.

Go, live life, and enjoy your freedom.

 

If you enjoy my posts, please follow me on https://welcometofreedomblog.wordpress.com . You do not need an account, just simply input your email to the follow field. I do not use your email for any other purpose besides for followers.

Month 1 in the Books

I’ve had my blog up for about a month. I want to thank everyone that reads it and sends comments. It has been a learning curve to learn the layout of the page, what the jargon means, and just finding followers.

At the start, I had my sisters look at the blog to see if it is user friendly. After working some of the kinks out of it, I posted it to my Facebook page. I got an immediate increase in the number of followers.  During this last month, I have been working on the garden, some projects around the house, and my full-time job of teaching and coaching. Some have asked how do you do it all?

Teaching a subject I am familiar with (Geometry) helps a lot. I show my students different things I build or have built in the past. They keep asking me why do I teach if I can build? I enjoy the thought of teaching and reaching the minds of today’s youth. I believe they need someone who enjoys the content and can actually show them the use of the content. I use an online classroom for their homework and tests, so I do not have anything really to grade.

With gardening, I work on the weekends, when given a chance. My sons love the part of digging, but once that was done, they tended to stay away from the garden. They help plant a couple of my seed cups ( http://wp.me/p8pCsM-21 ). I wanted to plant a lot of different vegetables and wanted a good crop. I was trying to find a tiller to borrow but we finally just purchased one. I am glad we did because I planted 2 more beds because my seedlings did pretty good.

During spring break, I had a chance to scavenge some 2×6’s from a local construction site. I dug some out of the dumpster and also asked the foreman if I can take some out of the trash pile next to the houses. This is where my outdoor dining table came from ( http://wp.me/p8pCsM-bD ).  I had many people comment and ask questions on this table.

This past weekend I joined many different groups on Facebook. I think this is how my blog will explode with traffic.  I am trying to find new avenues of how to broadcast my blog, find new followers, and make sure my posts are interesting.

Thank you for your time. If you enjoy reading about gardening, woodworking, survival skills, or how to create things for the house,  please follow me by entering your email on the right.

Planting Day 3-25-17

 

 

IMG_0289Today was a beautiful day. Sun was shining and a breeze. I got in super late last night due to rain delay and lightning delay for our game. Weathermen said 80-90% chance of rain yesterday, but I think they may have meant  80-90 sprinkles at our house or we are in a geographical bubble. So, I needed to water today. I didn’t get my pump set up yet but I got another bed planted.

Today, I planted my okra, and most of my cantaloupes. I spaced theIMG_0285 cantaloupe and the okra in the row of 1 cantaloupe to every 3 okra seedlings. I found a companion planting chart (http://permaculturenews.org/2011/12/02/companion-planting-information-and-chart/) and showed that melons and okra have a symbiotic relationship. I planted 60+ okra and about 15 cantaloupe plants. If they all make, I guess I will set up a road side fruit and vegetable stand.

For the rest of the garden, the corn is coming in great, along with the potatoes. The potato box needs another level. The third picture is a close up of a potato plant. I believe those little guys in the middle coming off the stock are where the potatoes will be produced. I cannot find anything online to tell me for certain though. I need to get dirt around these if that’s the case. There are a lot on the 20 plants I have. I have cardboard lining the walking/picking rows. I am trying to find some mulch to lay over it. I also have paper to line what I could not cover with the boxes. We did this in our front flower bed as a weed barrier, and worked like a charm. It helps with moisture absorption and retention, worm food, and weed barrier. I will biodegrade and will add nutrients back to the soil. Since I am a geometry teacher, I took all the old worksheets and will be lining the garden. I will have the smartest worms in all of Texas.

The squash is coming along nicely. I have a few plants that are about 8 inches across. This IMG_0291guy here is pretty nice. His little brother not doing well but I will keep him because I am doing a trellis (field fence) with the all my vine growing vegetables. Melons will not be so lucky. I will just trim them once onset of fruit is showing to make the plant pump more energy in producing the melon.  I will be using some fish emulsion this weekend as well. I was waiting for the secondary leaves to sprout. Most postings I have read for fertilizing told me to wait until secondary leaves are formed. Next feeding will be at onset of fruit. I will double check the different plants to make sure I am feeding them the right thing.

Yes, I see the grass growing next to the fence, and I will handle that. I will be trying the vinegar and salt mixture to see if it will solve my issues. I have some ants invading, so I will use the sugar, borax and water to get rid of them. The harvesters stripped my peach tree last year and I will not let that happen this year. I think my peach tree never reached its required chill hours to produce. Not a single bloom or leaf yet. Wait and see on this one.

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Thank you.

Garden Update 3-15

Its been a few days since I have posted anything. With the rain and getting softball fields ready for our games, I didn’t have time to sit down to post anything.

My main garden bed is completely filled and I have tons of seedlings left to plant. Today, I spent time preparing rows in a second bed with mapping out potential 3rd bed. I bought some okra seeds, soaked them in water, and planted them in my seedling cups. What happened, I have 90+ seedling cups now and most of the plants are looking really good. I will be giving some to my mother in law along with a few squash, cantaloupe and watermelon  seedlings. I am hoping we have a great spring and mild summer so my family can reap a good harvest this year.

Along with making rows, I planted my corn, green beans, chives, oregano, and a few extra strawberry plants. I am still trying to figure out a watering system that is cheap(free would be good) and maintenance free. It would be nice if I could pressurize my rain barrel to create water pressure so I could use a water hose to water the garden. Anyone with suggestions? I also need to put another level on my original potato box since the bigger plants are roughly 10-12 inches tall. It will be another week before the second box needs it second level.

Over the weekend, I also baited most of our fire ant hills. I can’t seem to get rid of them though. I look at the old hills and see all the dead ones, so the bait is working. I just have to be diligent on baiting. I also bought a broadcast fire ant bait once I mow later this week. I am mixing borax and sugar today and soaking cotton balls. I will try everything that is going to kill those pests just shy of dumping gas(want to but not going to) on the hills.

This was a brief update. If you like my post, please follow my blog by email and share. There are other postings in the categories listed to the right.

Thank you.