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Old 09-16-2011, 04:08 AM
Ranger Gord Ranger Gord is offline
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I know growing up, we had three rows of potatoes about 50 feet long that would supply all of our eating, a family of 5, for the entire year, plus enough for seeding the following spring.
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Old 09-16-2011, 04:58 AM
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Dan480man Dan480man is offline
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Our garden is approx. 90ftx25ft.
Poor clay soil, that I've been amending for years now, until its finally pretty usable.
Its too small to have any real corn crop with everything else, so I focus on:
Tomatoes, various squash and zucchini, pole beans, hot and sweet peppers, purplehull peas and okra.

I plant far enough apart to walk a small tiller through the rows to keep them open, but it still gets tight.

As long as the rain is there, we 3 always have plenty, and enough to give some away.

Some lessons are, don't plant 12 tomatoe plants, of the same age!
They'll come on at the same time, and you'll be swimming in tomatoes.
Plant like 4 large ones, buy some small ones, or plant in stages, etc.


We have another small 15x15 or so area out back, that is for canteloupes and watermelon. That one gets a little "hairy" so I keep it where no-one can see it


My grandparents had food coming in from April to November when I was a kid.
There was ALWAYS something that needed gathering, from strawberries in spring, all the normal bounty in summer, to pecans and peanuts in the fall, to turnips after frost.
I am trying myself to get back to that way of living.
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Old 09-17-2011, 04:59 AM
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I'm going to quote myself from another thread:

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Originally Posted by drobs View Post
I may start sounding like a broken record but you really need to read this book:

Amazon.com: All New Square Foot Gardening (9781591862024): Mel Bartholomew: Books

The idea behind the SFG is that your soil starts out perfect and is self contained. No need to worry about building your soil up, ph levels, fertilizer, weeding, soil clumping, roto tilling etc.

Really takes the hard work our of gardening.
We had really good results with this method this season. Going to add a couple more 4'x4' beds next season and try some corn.

Potatoes will be going in next year too.
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Old 09-17-2011, 03:33 PM
Andy_IT Andy_IT is offline
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Thank you for the interesting informations guys , I really appreciate.

Been a little busy these last days, but I'm trying to collect all of your advices in a pdf note.
I'll have to buy that book about square foot gardening, seems interesting.
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Old 09-18-2011, 04:30 PM
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In a real SHTF situation, I would predict that the most of us would become vegetarian ... maybe fish, a chicken, goat or beef occasionally. But, the idea of hunting in the woods for your dinner would be would everyone else would be doing also. The game or wildlife would drop way down, so the garden importance would increase dramatically.
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Old 09-18-2011, 05:15 PM
Borsch Dorks Gorge Borsch Dorks Gorge is offline
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The 'acre in a day' was with one man, a plough and one oxen - this is how acres originally came about - it is what could be managed in a day by an experienced person. If you ae just growing veg for the family, you can get by with a small plot - mine is 250 foot x 20 foot wide. I grow more than enough potatoes to store in sacks, onions to hang and beans, peas and sweetcorn to freeze to last most if not all of the year. Always have greens ready, depending on the time of year spring, summer or winter cabbage, kale, sprouts, cauliflower and broccoli.

I have a 15x10 greenhouse amd this provides more than enough tomatoes to have fresh tomatoes July - end of November. Lettuce is an all year round thing and then I have seasonal things such as beetroot, carrots, swedes (rutabega?), three apple trees, two gooseberry bushes, a 10x10 patch of rasberries.

Thing is, I 'bring in' a lot of fertility to the patch - manure, fallen leaves, seaweed, wood to burn for ash plus bought in things like blood and bone meal, pelleted chicken manure, lime and so on. As it is a private garden, would be stupid to pay to get it organically certified, but if I was to buy the veg I grow I grow, I would be out of pocket compare to what I spend on seeds and fertilisers.

That being said, my time is not accounted for, in which case I would be massivly out. Depending on the time of year, I can spend up to 30 hours a week working in the garden - this does include 'capital' work - laying paths, building walls and buildings etcetera, but I would not expect to spend less than 22-25 hours a week at the busiest times of year - late spring and early summer. Mid winter an hour or so, harvesting what I want to eat and keeping the place tidy.

If you were wanting fire wood, meat and veg, then at least 15 acres for a family of four - it would be managable with some machinery - a small garden tractor perhaps and you would still have time for a day job if most of the rest of your time was devoted to caring for plants and animals. Again, countign time, it would be unjustifiable in monetary terms, but as a lifestyle choice, hard work, clean air and good food are hard to beat.

Keep in mind however that a failure of a feed crop or being late getting your hay in would result in an expensive winter for livestock feed.

If you are gardening, consider keeping rabbits too. You will be getting a lot of third grade veg and better to feed it to them and compost the manure rather than putting it on the compost heap. You will still have to feed pellets too, but you will be getting meat. Putting the waste through the rabbits means you are less likely to introduce disease into your compost heap.
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