"The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul."
Welcome to our easy vegetable gardening section! Now you're getting into our true forte! Both of us love to garden. Although we do have a few ornamentals on our property, like flowering dogwoods, most of our time and energy goes towards growing edibles: fruits and vegetables for the kitchen.
Why go to the cost and trouble of planting your own produce? That's really not hard to answer if you think about it. When you grow your own crops, you know exactly what you're putting in your mouth. If you've been able to avoid using pesticides, then you'll feel much better about what you put on the dinner table for your family.
You might also consider the secure feeling you have just knowing you have a maturing fruit orchard and greenhouse bursting with fresh veggies. None of us know for sure what the uncertain financial future is going to bring us in the next few years. If you can at least plan for providing some of your family's sustenance without relying on "the system" for food, then that is a good thing.
We are working on another section to this website, called Build It!, in which we share with you simple plans for establishing a productive rabbit hutch and tell you how to raise a few chickens for eggs and meat.
That, along with an ambitious vegetable garden, and perhaps some berry bushes and fruit trees, should go a long way towards securing your independence from the remote food production industry you probably rely on now.
What do you have to lose? If we never have a situation in which the mass production and distribution of food fails, you still have in place your own little cost-savings "food factory", churning out delicious chemical-free nourishment for your family.
For a more in-depth article on how to grow, preserve and stockpile heirloom and/or organic veggies, visit Survival Foods.
We have been heavily involved in hydroponics for years now, and recommend it highly for its clean and green nature (little or no pesticides; much less water consumption) and amazing productivity.
We use our hydroponic setups in a small greenhouse during the winter months. Hydroponic gardening produces unbelievable amounts of produce in a very limited space.
We have a whole section devoted to this unique and fun gardening method, and invite you to read all about it here: Hydroponic Gardening.
We embrace soil-based gardening as well. We live in a hot climate, and our greenhouse lies idle in the summer (temp reaches 120°F plus inside!) At that time, we plant our summer crops in a small soil garden using the raised-bed square foot gardening method.
Due to the intensive fertilization methods, crops can be grown quite close together in these gardens. This limits the amount of weeding, watering and feeding tremendously.
We have tried tilling up large traditional gardens in the past and were quickly overwhelmed by the amount of labor involved in keeping it weeded. And in the summers here, hard labor in the garden in the heat of a July afternoon is absolutely grueling.
So, for your soil-based gardening needs, we recommend only the square foot gardening method. And of course, we have a section devoted to that here: Square Foot Garden.
You know how we are with our gadgets, right? Well, we have explored most of the latest gardening gadgets available on the market today.
Honestly, very few were worth reporting to you. A couple we use ourselves and recommend; and we came across several that look promising. Read all about it here: Garden Design Ideas & Gardening Gadgets.
Love to garden? Then you'll love a greenhouse!
We discuss why we recommend Solexx panels and kits; and how well they worked for us. We thought you might be interested in taking a peek at our greenhouse.
Learn how we also built a Survival Greenhouse which can be powered both on and off the grid. Our Greenhouse page can be found here: Greenhouse Gardening.