Project Self Sufficiency Day 1 – Reboot

2014 Garden all finished

2014 Garden all finished

I told my Facebook Followers that beginning today, I was going to document a year of our newest effort at moving towards self sufficiency. To be fair, it’s kind of a reboot. We’ve been farming and gardening since 2009, and have had our share of successes and failures. Over the last couple months, though, as I’ve reflected on all we’ve accomplished, I have redesigned the whole process in ways that I think will be simpler for us and for others who want to venture down this road. Please send us your thoughts and questions and join in the fun. We’ll try and add as many photos as possible, and over time, we’ll add some videos, as well. OK, let’s get going.

December 1 – Project Self Sufficiency began today. It was a slow start, but at least we got out of the starting gate.

The first thing I did was assess the 2014 garden spot to determine what we can reuse and what we will scrap. I walked the garden to look over the state of it since I shut it down the second week of October (except for the greenhouse). It’s in some disarray from neglect, as the attached photo show, but nothing that can’t be taken care of easily before January.

Got manure and mulch in the Wicking Beds

Got manure and mulch in the Wicking Beds

I’ve mulched the wicking beds with straw and rabbit manure. I will turn it under and let it sit until late February, when I will add some peat and perlite to keep it light and loose. All the beds already have some worms. They will work to break down the manure and straw.

All of the buckets will come into the greenhouse to be freshened and will be planted with sugar snap peas in January. They will be taken out in early March when they are ready to be trellised.

The containers will be refurbished in the greenhouse on nice days, so they can be planted in March and April.

Hydroponics experiment was a success

Hydroponics experiment was a success

The Hydroponics experiment has been very successful. You can see that there are still things growing, but I will shut it down in the next week or two so I can reorganize the greenhouse with several of these systems. We’ve already harvested quite a bit of Lettuce, Swiss Chard, Baby Bok Choi, and Kale from it. I expect to get two more harvests before I shut it down.

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