By far one of the most important factors contributing to the size and quality of your harvest is the soil in which your garden is planted. While it may seem like you’re stuck with the soil you have, the truth is there are quite a few things you can do to improve the quality of your soil and maximize your harvest.
Below, we’ll take a look at 11 garden soil hacks you can use to grow a healthier, more bountiful garden.
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1. Plant Cover Crops
Cover crops are plants that are planted for the purpose of enriching the soil. When planted in your garden alongside the plants that you intend to harvest, cover crops can add nutrients to the soil, smother out many weeds and other unwanted plants, improve the drainage in your garden, and more.
There are a number of plants that serve as cover crops – some of which you can actually harvest as well. Daikon radishes and ryegrass are two common cover crops, though you can check out this article for a list of great cover crops.
2. Start Composting
Compost is a gardener’s best friend. Starting your own compost pile presents a relatively inexpensive and hassle-free opportunity to dramatically improve the quality of your garden’s soil.
Starting out composting may be a little intimidating. However, composting isn’t all that complicated or difficult once you have a good grasp of the process. If you would like to learn more about how to get started composting, check out this article.
3. Add What’s Missing
Many times, the soil in your garden may be missing a few key nutrients that your plants will need in order to thrive. Unless you know what nutrients your soil is lacking in, though, it’s hard to know what to add.
The good news is that you can make use of a soil testing kit to identify what it is that your soil is missing. After you purchase a soil testing kit and collect your soil samples, you will need to submit the samples to a certified lab. The lab will then send you a full report on your soil, breaking down its composition so you will know what’s missing.
Once you know where your soil is lacking, you can go about adding the right nutrients. No matter what your soil is missing, there are products you can purchase as well as DIY alternatives that will be able to fill in the gap.
4. Use Manure
Animal manure is one of the oldest fertilizers in the world. Even with the invention of artificial fertilizers, though, old-fashioned manure remains one of the most effective ways to add a wide range of nutrients to the soil.
Chicken manure is one most popular manures for fertilizing gardens, thanks mostly to the fact that it is easier to collect in large amounts. However, you can also use horse manure, cow manure, goat manure, or manure from most any other livestock animal.
One important word of caution when using manure to fertilize a garden, though, is that using too much manure or using manure that is too fresh can “burn” your plants. Therefore, it’s important to use the right amount of manure on your garden as well as let your manure age and dry out some before you apply it.
5. Use Mulch
Mulch doesn’t directly add nutrients to the soil the way fertilizer does, but it can still improve the quality of the soil around your plants in a significant way.
You’ll want to add a few inches of mulch around the base of your plants right after you plant them. This mulch will help retain moisture and ensure that your plants get plenty of water. The mulch will also help cool down the soil your plant is growing in, which will improve the quality of the soil and the health of the plant that is growing in it.
6. Add Nutrients With Earthworms
Earthworms can be incredibly beneficial to the quality of the soil in your garden. There are a few different ways to make use of earthworms in order to add nutrients to your soil.
One method is to add earthworms to your compost pile. The worms will help speed up the decomposition of your compost as well as infuse it with even more nutrients.
You can also farm earthworms in a separate compost bin and collect the castings that they leave behind. These castings can then be added to your garden soil in order to boost its available nutrients.
Lastly, you can place earthworms directly in your garden by burying them in the soil and placing a little compost and/or mulch on top of them. The worms will then deposit their nutrient-rich castings directly into your soil.
7. Control the Weeds
There are a number of reasons why weeds are such a problem for gardeners, including the fact that they pull all of the nutrients out of the soil. If you want to create an ideal growing habitat for your plants, getting the weeds in your garden under control needs to be a top priority.
Start by putting mulch over your garden in the fall in order to get a head start on weed control and prevent many weeds from sprouting. From there, try to stay on top of the weeds by pulling up those that do sprout in the spring as quickly as possible. You can bury the weeds you pull under a few inches of mulch to kill two birds with one stone and add more nutrients to the soil at the same time you are eliminating your plants’ competition.
8. Don’t Walk On Your Garden Soil
Everyone knows not to step directly on the plants in a garden, but did you know that even stepping on the soil around your plants can be harmful as well? The reason why you want to avoid stepping on your soil has to do with keeping the soil aerated.
The soil in your garden contains small pockets of air, and this air plays an essential role in the quality of your soil. When you step on the soil, though, you force out this air.
When you plant your garden, create ample room between the rows for you to walk down without stepping on the soil that your plants’ roots are buried in. This way you can still access your plants without robbing the air from the soil beneath them.
9. Avoid Working Your Soil When It Is Wet
Working your soil when it is too wet creates the same problem that stepping on your soil does – it forces the air out of the soil.
While it may be tempting to head out to your garden as soon as a rainstorm is through, you’ll want to wait until your soil dries out a little before you try to do anything with it. To test if your soil is too wet to work, grab a handful of the soil and squeeze it.
If no water comes out between your fingers, then the soil is ready to work. If you do notice water coming out of the soil, though, it’s better to wait for it to dry out a little before you try to do anything with it.
10. Spread Ashes Through Your Garden
If you have a wood burning stove, you can use the ashes from your stove to add nutrients to your garden soil. Wood ash still contains many of the nutrients from the tree it came from such as calcium, potassium, and a number of other micronutrients that will be great for your soil.
Ash is also very alkaline, which means that it can be used to lower the acidity of your soil. While this is great for some plants, it’s also not so great for other plants that prefer acidic soil such as blueberries. Before you put ashes around your plants, check the pH of the soil and compare it against the pH level that your specific plants do best in.
If your soil is already at an ideal pH level or it is on the alkaline side, avoid putting ashes in your garden. If, however, the soil could use the alkaline boost then wood ash makes for a great way to boost the alkalinity of your soil while at the same time adding a number of nutrients to it.
11. Put Kitchen Scraps To Work
Many of the kitchen scraps that you might be throwing out can be very healthy for the soil in your garden. For example, coffee grounds, raw vegetable scraps, banana peels, egg shells, and many more kitchen scraps can all serve as a great source of nutrients.
Rather than throwing these kitchen scraps away, collect them and spread them around your plants. It may not make for the most attractive garden in the world, but it will greatly improve the quality of your soil and the health of your plants as the scraps decompose.
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This article first appeared on urbansurvivalsite.com See it here
4 No Cook Meals For Surviving The Pandemic And Food Supply Shortages
When it comes to your food supply, you just can’t risk not having enough. These no cook meals will be a great addition to your food supply planning. Check out the recipes below!
No Cook Meals to Help You Through the Pandemic
As of the writing of this article, there are 20 meat processing plants that have been shut down due to COVID-19 infections. We have been worrying about these types of effects on our food supply for months now, and this is the first real sign of how infections can affect the food supply.
When you walk into a supermarket, you might not see all the choices you had in the past. An empty meat case is a humbling thing for your eyes to fall upon. It’s the shocking realization that the seemingly infinite supply of chickens, pigs, and cows that are butchered for us has begun to run dry!
To deal with this issue, we are going to present four no cook meals that will help you create dinners at home that will feed your family without worrying so much about what’s available, or unavailable, in the meat case.
1. Smashed White Bean, Avocado and Salted Pork Sandwiches
As preppers we get beans. There are a bunch of ways to use beans and this a great example of how you can pack a sandwich with great nutrition and protein.
Serving: Makes 4 sandwiches
- Can of White Beans
- Olive Oil
- 1 Avocado
- 8 Slices of Whole Grain Bread
- 8 Slices of Salted Pork (Prosciutto, Ham, Virginia Ham)
- Begin by draining your beans in a colander then smashing them up in a bowl add a few glugs of olive oil, salt, pepper. This little mix is delicious. If you add some minced rosemary, you can even turn this into a delicious dip.
- Pit your avocado and cut it in half and then quarters lengthwise. Leave the skin on.
- Lay the bread out on a clean work surface for assembling the sandwiches.
- Spread your mashed bean mix onto one side of the bread.
- Peel your avocados and slice 1 quarter for each sandwich. Spread slices over the bean spread.
- Add a few slices of your pork to over the top of the avocado.
- You can finish this sandwich with some lettuces, fresh sprouts, or just eat it as is.
2. Delicious Crab Salad
Canned crab is a protein option that will likely be around through much of this meat crisis. It does have to be kept in refrigeration, but it’s delicious and this chipotle mayo salad is great in the spring and summer.
- 1 Can of Crab Meat
- 1 Bunch of Asparagus
- Chipotle Mayo
- 1 Bunch of Green Onions
- 1 Bunch of Cilantro
- Drain your crab in a colander and set it in the sink.
- Slice your asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Throw them into a bowl.
- Thinly slice your onions and your cilantro and throw that into the bowl, as well.
- Gently toss in the crab meat.
- Squirt on enough Chipotle mayo to coat everything and toss gently not to break up the crab meat.
- Chill in the fridge and serve.
3. Simple Greek Salad
The combination of simple summer ingredients makes for an incredible quick salad that you could add other proteins, too, if you wanted. These could be canned meats.
- 2 Large Tomatoes
- 1 Cucumber
- 1 Red Onion
- ¼ Cup of Feta Cheese
- A Few Sprigs of Fresh Mint
- ½ Cup of Kalamata Olives
- Balsamic Dressing
- I like to cut the tomatoes in large chunks and have them kind of be the main course in this salad. Peel and slice your cucumber in half. Remove the seeds and either dice or slice in half-moons.
- Peel and slice your red onion in half. Julienne your, or thinly slice, your half onion.
- Add all these ingredients to a bowl. Finely slice your mint.
- Add your olives, crumbled feta, and mint to the bowl and add enough dressing to coat everything.
- Stir it up and allow this to chill for at least an hour for the flavors to really blend.
4. Mediterranean Tuna Lettuce Wraps
Using some similar ingredients and adding a protein like tuna, you can create some delicious lettuce wraps. The key to a good lettuce wrap is to have most of the items around the same size. So, consider that when you are preparing this dish.
- Iceberg or Butter Lettuce
- Canned Artichokes
- Canned roasted Red peppers
- Fresh Cucumber
- Feta Cheese
- Minced Olives ¼ Cup
- 2 Cans of Tuna
- Green Onions
- Start by peeling all the full leaves from your lettuce. Set them on a plate either cover them with a wet paper towel or put them back into the fridge.
- Dice the peppers, artichokes, and cucumbers into cubes. Go no larger than ½ an inch.
- Thinly slice your green onions and basil and add them to a bowl with your diced vegetables. Add your loves to this bowl and mix them thoroughly.
- Crumble your feta cheese over the mixture.
- Drain your tuna thoroughly and then add that to the bowl, as well.
- Gently toss this mixture. Try not to break up the tuna and the cheese too much but incorporate it thoroughly.
- If you want, you can add some olive oil to the mix or a few glugs of balsamic vinegar. It’s also delicious just how it is.
- Scoop a few tablespoons into a lettuce leaf, wrap it up and eat up!
These no cook meals should help lessen the stress you feel when thinking of what to feed your family. If you don’t have the specific ingredients, use your creativity, and use what you have. You might discover a new recipe while you’re at it!
What’s your favorite no cook meal recipe? Please share it with us in the comments section!
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This Article Was First Found at survivallife.com Read The Original Article Here
Billionaire Whistle Blower: Wuhan Coronavirus Death Toll Is Over 50,000
- Exiled Chinese businessman Guo Wengui recently revealed leaks from Wuhan crematoriums. He claims based on the number of bodies their furnaces are burning, the death toll could be as high as 50,000.
A Chinese billionaire and whistleblower who lives in U.S. exile says Wuhan crematoriums have burned 50,000 coronavirus victims. | Credit: Chinatopix via AP
- The official coronavirus death toll in China is a little over 800. But an exiled Chinese businessman says crematoriums are leaking the real figure.
- A billionaire whistleblower alleges Wuhan has crematoriums working 24/7. He claims they’ve cremated some 50,000 coronavirus victims.
- Guo Wengui is a Chinese billionaire living in exile in the United States.
The official coronavirus death toll is some 800 people in China. The current official death toll worldwide, outside of China, is 774. But a Chinese billionaire with a history of blowing the whistle on his former government says the real figure is much higher.
Exiled Chinese businessman Guo Wengui recently revealed leaks from Wuhan crematoriums. He claims based on the number of bodies their furnaces are burning, the death toll could be as high as 50,000. Wengui made the bombshell allegations in an interview with former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon.
Whistleblower: 1.5 Million Coronavirus Cases In China, 50,000 Coronavirus Deaths In Wuhan
He also claims to have inside information that there are 1.5 million confirmed coronavirus cases in China. Wengui is emphatic that these are not merely quarantined or “under observation” but confirmed cases of coronavirus infection:
China has struggled to contain the coronavirus. But it has also struggled to contain public outcry against censorship and tight control of information. Dr. Li Wenliang, who sounded the alarm about the disease, succumbed to an infection and died this week. The Chinese government arrested him for blowing the whistle.
Then officials tried to suppress news of his death. Afterwards, millions of Chinese citizens saw the hashtag #IWantFreedomOfSpeech on Mandarin language social media. But the Chinese government censored that too.
Are Wengui’s Crematorium Claims Credible?
Watch VICE’s 2017 profile on Guo Wengui. At the time, he published bombshell documents alleging corruption in the Chinese government. He got the attention of the media and reportedly the U.S. State Department.
5 Types Of Ammunition To Stockpile For A Collapse
Every prepper knows it’s a great idea to stockpile ammunition when preparing for a major disaster.
You can use it for hunting, self-defense, or barter.
But which types of ammo should you stockpile?
If you plan on bartering, then you don’t want a bunch of calibers that nobody wants. And that’s just one consideration.
In this video, Reality Survival & Prepping talks about what he thinks are the 5 best types of ammunition to stockpile for a collapse.
Here are his picks:
- .22 LR – Very common, good for hunting small game, very light and small.
- 9mm Luger – Great for self-defense, fits in a wide variety of handguns.
- 5.56×45mm or .223 Remington – Also very common, cheap and effective.
- .308 Winchester – Widely used, works in AR10 and bolt-action platforms.
- 12 Gauge – You can do a lot with it — hunt, defend yourself, etc.
In the video below he makes a much more detailed case for each caliber. What do you think of this list?
This article first appeared on urbansurvivalsite.com See it here
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