SurvivalRing Radio has been shut down for the time being (mentioned this last Friday). The main SurvivalRing.org site and the SurvivalRingRadio.com websites will remain online…just no upcoming podcasts or shows for the time beings. We’ll call our “Hiatus for the next few months. Focus on family and career (and health) for now….It’s all about the […]
As winter gives its last hurrah, my thoughts are turning toward the promise of spring.
Maybe you’re like me, and you love the idea of having a bountiful garden, but the idea of dragging soil additives to the backyard, dealing with weeds and pests, and trying to coax a few tiny tomatoes from their vine seems like more work than it’s worth. Instead of trying to force a garden into the ground, I’ve begun using raised beds. It works better in my suburban yard, and gives me more flexibility in how I garden.
What makes a raised bed garden better than a traditional garden? Glad you asked.
1. Improved soil quality.
One of the key components of a successful garden is good soil. Depending on where you live, this may be one of your biggest challenges. Your soil may be too acidic, too hard, too sandy, too chalky. Skip the headache of trying to figure out what to add to correct the soil by using a raised bed. In your raised bed garden, you can create the perfect soil. Add compost, fertilizer or whatever else is needed to create the ideal growing environment for what you’re planting.
2. Pest management.
Few things are as disheartening as finding your garden ravished by pests. Trying to keep critters, bugs and parasites out of your plants is time consuming and frustrating. A raised bed, however, makes it easier. The frames of the raised beds will help keep out pests and other critters that crawl along the ground out of your garden.
Soil parasites and nematodes can be thwarted with the use of plastic liners. Wire netting can prevent rodents and other burrowing creatures from invading the garden. Raised beds can be secured with fencing. Physical pest control management is easier and faster, thanks to the size of the raised bed. With easy access to all sides of the garden, you can remove interlopers by hand, or apply localized pesticides.
3. Increased production.
Using staggered rows, you can maximize your crop production. Rich soils allow for more plant nutrients, and compact planting areas prevent weeds from invading the garden. This creates an ideal growing situation that gives you more food in less space. In addition, you can extend your growing season by planting earlier and continuing your garden later in the year thanks to your raised bed.
4. Improved drainage.
Plants don’t like to have wet feet. A raised bed allows for rain to seep into the garden, and prevents the runoff that would typically wash away topsoil. Water is able to soak down into the lower level of the bed, giving the plants all the moisture they need, without the stagnating puddles of water they don’t.
5. Improved aeration.
Plant roots need aeration to breathe and to absorb nutrients. By mixing the soil for your raised bed, you are giving the plants loose soil to grow. This provides for circulation to keep the soil (and the plants) healthy.
6. Improved weed control.
Raised beds give you the ability to control weeds by using soil that is free of dormant seeds. In addition, you can use liners, such as newspaper or other bed liners, to prevent weeds from growing up through the raised bed. Close planting of crops prevents weeds from taking root, and the loose soil makes it easier to pull any errant weeds that may make their way into the garden.
This spring, skip the digging. Try a raised bed garden and see what a difference it can make in your homesteading. Your back (and your garden) will thank you.
Do you use raised beds? What are your favorite benefits from them? Share your thoughts in the section below:
The Benefits of Social Media in Prepping Highlander “Survival & Tech Preps” Listen in player below! In past shows I have talked about the dangers of social media and the internet. This episode I will flip the switch and talk about the benefits of social media in prepping. We often see the dangers of the … Continue reading The Benefits of Social Media in Prepping
Silver, the unseen benefits!
James Walton “I Am Liberty”
If you frequent any prepper website its likely you are inundated with information about buying gold and silver. Most adds can be as ostentatious as to tell you that “quickly before the dollar is devalued to 0” you must buy gold and silver. Then there is a quiver inside you. Fear begins to chip away at your common sense and you make poor decisions. If you have a desire to get into buying silver read this article to find out the benefits that go far beyond an economic collapse.
Early on I bought into this idea. I bought silver at $25 and I have bought silver at $13. There was a time when I felt pressured to purchase silver because I thought we wouldn’t be able to afford bread if I didn’t have an alternate means to pay for it. The wheel barrels of money type of thing had a hold of my consciousness. Pretty soon, however, something began to happen.
I started to fall in love with these gleaming pieces. These incredible designs and the weight and worth of the metal began to take me over like a spell. Soon it became less about price and more about design. I started seeking out certain pieces with my son and we enjoy going to different locations and buying silver.
Silver pieces that are brought out only on “special occasions” are a great way to inspire your children to begin counting. They are these beautiful, shiny things that kids want to touch, when they are permitted to. This is a great way to get children excited about counting and math that doesn’t involve flash cards or phone apps.
If you find a quality dealer they will have the ability to engrave coins as well. This gives you an incredible option for creating very important and nostalgic pieces for your collection. Just recently Silvertowne, one of my favorite dealers, has created a small case for silver coins that transforms that coin into a Christmas tree ornament. Awesome.
Of course beyond all of this warm and fuzzy that goes along with collecting, buying, hoarding, storing or stacking, there are also the benefits of owning a very real and tangible asset.
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Chewing gum / bubble gum is a pop-culture element so rooted into modern society that it’s impossible for our generations (the gum-chewing, bubble-blowing generations) to envision it otherwise. As kids, we used to go for the sweet flavored types, the ones that came into a multitude of colors or flavors. As adults, if we lost our sweet tooth along the way, we changed directions when it comes to chewing gum. We mostly go for the minty ones, which are great for oral hygiene. No matter your age or social status, for some reason or another, at some point in space and time, you’ll find yourself the benefits of chewing gum.
You might think that the product in question is a characteristic of modern 20th and 21st century society, but that’s far from truth. The “ancestor” of chewing gum originated in antiquity, and it can’t be attributed to a single civilization. The Greeks were chewing on mastic tree sap, the Egyptians had a mixture of sap and spices (cinnamon, frankincense, myrrh etc.) and the Mayans and Aztecs chewed Sapodilla tree sap. The habit of chewing gum (or its various alternatives) stood the test of time because, apart from flavor and texture, chewing has its benefits.
Enhances memory capacity and overall concentration
It has been demonstrated that chewing gum can do wonders for both the memory and the ability to concentrate. There are caffeine-based chewing gums that are best suited for the job, but any sort of gum will do well too. An NBC report has shown that chewing is in direct correlation with memory enhancement and improved test scores, due to the increase of physiological activities like blood flow, blood pressure and heart rate. The increase of blood flow in the brain means higher oxygenation, which makes for better brain functions. Because chewing increases mental alertness, is also highly recommended for kids with learning problems or mental disabilities. Mental alertness is always beneficial, especially in a survival situation where you’ll need to be aware of everything that goes on around you, to make fast decisions and act quickly as your survival depends on every step you take.
Relieves stress and boosts morale
According to his scientific study, chewing gum is a very powerful nerve tonic, because it helps calm down the nerves and alleviates negative moods. It’s exactly for this reason why chewing gum is included and distributed amongst the soldiers that find themselves in a war zone. Chewing gum helps reduces the levels of cortisol , which is a hormone secreted by the adrenal gland as a response to high levels of stress or to low levels of glucose in the blood stream. Increased levels of cortisol can be beneficial on short-term periods, but on longer periods of time they can be detrimental to cognitive functions and can even lower the immune system recovery. Because chewing gum contains small amounts of sugar, it can also serve as a small reserve of energy. Having a pack of your favourit gum on you will not only supply you with that tiny bit of energy, but it can also increase your morale and distress your jaw muscles and lower anxiety. So leave some room in your survival kit for a couple of packs of gum.
Suppresses hunger, thirst and aids digestion
The military (and trained combatants in general) use chewing gum as a means of suppressing hunger when the opportunity of eating is not available. The same principle can easily be applied in a survival situation, especially if SHTF and you find yourself a bit short on food supplies. The Zoft Gum is a very potent appetite suppressant and you can get 5 packs for about $10. Believe it or not, not only is there a gum to fight of hunger, but there’s also one that can quench thirst. The Quench Gum was primarily made for athletes in order to keep them hydrated as much as possible during periods of physical effort. It’s packed with 5mg of potassium (K) and electrolytes. The Quench Gum is available on the market in costs about $9 – $10. Chewing gum can be very supportive when it comes do digestion. Chewing constantly will increase the levels of saliva, which in turn will boost the quantity of digestive acids in the stomach. This is achieved with the aid of xylitol, which is found in most chewing gums.
Chewing gum based life hacks
- Bait – you can use chewing gum as fish bait, just chew it a little and place it on the hook; it’s very efficient against catfish and it can also lure crabs if you place it on the crab line.
- Radiator patch – this is a good temporary solution for a leaky radiator; it should hold long enough for you to reach a mechanic
- “Magnet” – it can be very useful if you’re trying to retrieve small objects from an nearly unreachable place; just place some gum on the end of a stick or a piece of string and you’ll be able to recover that lost ring or keys in no time
- Window fixer – if you have a lose window pane, don’t worry too much about it; get a stick of ordinary chewing gum, chew on it a little and simply place it as putty
- Repeal bugs – extra minty gum will repeal mealworms and other bugs from getting into your flower; of course, provided you previously placed a small piece of gum in there first
You’ve probably been chewing gum for some years know, without knowing the benefits that ordinary chewing gum had to offer. Now you know, as the wonders of chewing gum are irrefutable. No matter who you are or where you’re at, always have a pack of gum on you; you can never tell how and when it will save the day.
By Alec Deacon
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