Friday, December 14, 2012


The other day Dear Hubby and son drove a load of bees – in their hives of course – to a warmer climate in South Georgia. The farm they are now residing at is primarily hydroponic. The greenhouses are amazing and the produce is organic because it does not grow in the soil. I am now the proud owner of three lovely heads of lettuce which are growing in my hydroponic kitchen bowls.
There is a very easy and inexpensive way to develop a system that will allow novice farmers to produce crops using recycled water and a few minerals. We hope to get ours up and running after Christmas. The lettuce is beautiful and buttery. I have been making salads with the outer leaves and thoroughly enjoying my “home-grown” crop.

The farmer also has long rows of blueberries planted in pine mulch. DH brought back 6 to add to our small row. This is a fruit that is easy to grow and requires little attention. The farmer covers his with bird netting because a large flock can ruin the entire crop. They don’t just eat the them, they peck holes or knock the berries off the bush. We noticed birds like to just punch holes in our apples rather than work on just one. This year we’ll rig a net ourselves and see if we can save more of the crop. We lost all of the muscadines and scupernons. Seems one day they were almost ready to harvest and the next they had all disappeared.

This South Georgia farmer is beginning to do more with containers. Most of us have a small sunny patch somewhere on our property – or porch that will work for a variety of plants. I want a couple of kitchen herb pots. I am also thinking of burying a clay pot or two of mint so it won’t be so invasive.
This spring I’m going to transplant some of the lemon balm that grew WAY too prolifically at the house we now rent. Our steep hill needs something to stop bank erosion. It gets full sun so should make an ideal location for perennial herbs. Now getting water to the area is going to take a bit of ingenuity.

Most herbs are hardy and will thrive in less-than idea soil. As water restrictions and costs increase, finding plants that can be sustained with little maintenance and attention will produce dividends. We will have the ingredients for tinctures, salves, flavored oils and teas. In addition we can pretty-up some of those stubborn bare spots in our yards.
If we begin now looking at ways we can move into self-sufficiency, we will be ahead of the game if food becomes scarce. In addition, having a product we can sell will always be a blessing. May I suggest you set your faith to acquire a pressure canner and dehydrator. Estate sales tend to have items that younger generations are not interested in, but are gold for those who are prudent preparers. Canning jars are often available heaped in boxes for pennies. I have an ancient oblong (fits on two burners) water canner that someone was throwing away. It holds much more than a modern canner and will probably last another three or four generations.

Let me know what God is telling you about making some adjustments in your life because of what is coming.

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