For everyone who is wanting to know how to get started and to Be Prepared your smart move is to counter the rising costs of food. And better yet replace it with clean, none genetically modified(GMO) and pesticide/herbacide poisons on your food. So I tell everyone start by trying to make your living situation more sustainable today. Right where you are.... No need to have some big ranch, farm, or acreage. You can do it right in your front yard, back yard, patio... Now is an excellent time to start getting your materials together. Some of the best materials you can get any time is mulch and manures. And it just so happens that many people who have livestock, horses, rabbits, alpacas etc all have one thing that they would like to get rid of. That is manure. You can buy it, but you can also find it for free if your willing to drive over to where it is and load it up. Sometimes they will even have a tractor with a loader to load up your pickup truck. Don't have a pickup truck? That's cool even garbage cans and garbage bags work fine for aged/season/composted manure. It doesn't smell, and is ready to be put to work in your garden.
I find Craigslist a fantastic resource for the free listings of everything from pallets, to leaves, manure, and many other free things. You just need to run and get it. Also check with your city. Many times they have to do tree service to keep power lines clear and offer wood chips for free. Call your local tree service companies and ask them for their wood chips. Sometimes they will even deliver them to you.
If your new to all of this then I highly recommend cheking out the "Back to Eden Garden" documentary:
Back to Eden Garden - Documentary
The key to success is access to lots of manure and wood chips and you will be amazed at what happens. So why not get started now? Look for some free aged manure in your area and lay it on your garden beds, flower beds, and anyplace you want to grow thick... Then layer on the wood chips. You can find both resources for free if you look and are willing to do some work... Ok, if you have to go get this stuff it can turn out to be a bit of work, but the good news is that the wood chips take a long while to decay/compost. So you lay it on really heavy this year, and maybe a touch up next year and you will be good to go for a while. Then just keep feeding those plants the manures to keep them happy. We can get into blog post on the types of manures and the benefits of each in another post.
Reminder, get your seeds ordered if you haven't done so yet. Many of the seed growers are sold out of the best things right away. I placed my order and they were already sold out of several things I wanted. So I need to rack it down some place else now. So just a heads up. If you want the best seeds find good places for heirlooms that you can save seed from. I bought my seeds for the last couple of years from Baker Heirloom Seeds. There are some others that I have used and have been very happy. This year I will be using some seed I saved and trying new things. Every year is a learning experience. It can take time and practice and our goal is to make our gardens one of our main food sources. Eat locally, in season, sustainably. It is good for you and your family. Improve your lives and your health! :-)
Have an awesome week...