Tag Archives: self-reliance

Grow More Perennials and Save Labor

Whether you’re a backyard gardener, a homesteader or someone contemplating joining the ranks of those desiring to be more self-sufficient, we’re all busy and are looking for ways to save time and effort. Raising perennials is the answer. Why not … Continue reading

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Compost is the Lifeblood of any Organic Garden

Compost is the lifeblood of any organic garden since it not only enriches the soil, but also improves soil structure. Both clay soil or sandy soil can be transformed into a productive loam through the addition of compost. What is … Continue reading

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Woodlot Thinning

For 42 years, I’ve actively managed and worked in the woods. The forest has been a source of firewood, income, recreation and exercise. Johanna and I cannot imagine living anywhere else other than surrounded by forest. I cannot look at … Continue reading

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Wood Cookstoves – Tips and Tricks

Given a wood cookstove is the only appliance we’ve ever had in our off-grid kitchen for the last 42 years, we’ve learned lots of tips and tricks that a novice may find useful beginning with the selection of a stove, … Continue reading

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Homesteading Track and Field

Homesteading Track and Field? Is there even such a thing?? By the time you get to the end of my article, you will have a definitive answer to that age old question. Homesteading Track and Field. Indeed! Competitive track and … Continue reading

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A Homestead Staple – Potatoes

Potatoes are a staple vegetable for us. We grow several hundred pounds each year for just the two of us. Let’s explore how we grow and harvest a homestead staple – potatoes. Here’s a video we did on potato planting. … Continue reading

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Using Our Cast Iron Waffle Maker

In a previous post we extol the virtues of cast iron for any homestead kitchen. Cast Iron Cookware for the Homestead Kitchen. Below is a video of me using our cast Iron waffle maker to make homemade buttermilk waffles. See … Continue reading

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Grow Your Own Italian Herb Seasoning Mix

Anyone, even apartment dwellers, can grow their own Italian herb seasoning mix. All that is required to make your own Italian herb seasoning mix is equal parts of the following dry herbs: Oregano, Marjoram, Thyme, Basil, Rosemary, Sage. Growing the … Continue reading

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Cast Iron Cookware for the Homestead Kitchen

Having lived off-grid for over 40 years, I’ve always used a wood cookstove for all my cooking, baking and canning and have found that cast iron cookware for the homestead kitchen can’t be beat.

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The Fall Garden – A Key Component to Vegetable Self-Sufficiency

The fall garden is one that is still producing after the first fall frosts and is a sign of a dedicated, committed and skilled gardener. While keeping a garden productive well into fall is a key component to vegetable self-sufficiency, … Continue reading

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Bountiful Harvests Grown on Small Plots

Recently, our publisher put up an inspiring post about an urban garden in Detroit on our book’s marketing page. That post garnered over 250,000 likes and loves and wonderful comments from so many people. As you might imagine, it also … Continue reading

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Ten Non-electric Small Appliances for the Off-Grid Homestead Kitchen

For the off-grid homestead kitchen with limited power options, there are non-electric versions of various small appliances available to make kitchen duties easier. If, like us, you are solar powered with ample power, the following non-electric utensils are still invaluable. … Continue reading

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Home Grown Rhubarb Juice for More Self-Reliance

While home grown orange juice is out of the question for us self-reliant homesteaders in most of North America, home grown rhubarb juice isn’t. In our book, The Self-Sufficient Backyard: For the Independent Homesteader, we write about rhubarb and rhubarb … Continue reading

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Plant Belgian Endive Now for January Salad Greens

For those of us seeking independence from the supermarket, winter salad greens are a challenge. But there’s a little known vegetable that fills the void – Belgian endive otherwise known as Witloof chicory. So plant Belgian endive now for January … Continue reading

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The Homestead Herb Garden

Our previous two homesteads wouldn’t have been complete without the homestead herb garden and neither would our new homestead here in Nova Scotia. Because herbs don’t require much space, they make good candidates for containers and can even be grown … Continue reading

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Rhubarb for the Self-Reliant Garden

Rhubarb, sometimes referred to as pie plant, has a place in every self-reliant garden especially for us northern gardeners. This hardy perennial is a boon for any of us in cold climates as it’s one of the first things to … Continue reading

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Time to Get the Garden Started

With winter-like weather still in the forecast, garden season seems so far away. But it’s actually time to get the garden started unless you plan to buy seedlings from a nursery center. Seeds for vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, celery, … Continue reading

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The Off-Grid Dream – the Realities

Going off-grid is your dream, but how do you proceed? Where do you begin? First you need to come to grips with the realities of going off-grid. We’ve lived the off-grid dream for 41 years beginning in northern Maine at … Continue reading

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Fall Garden Care

One would think that with the onset of fall frosts, cooler weather and blustery winds, garden chores would have come to an end. But in reality, the success of next year’s harvest begins now. Fall is the time to replenish … Continue reading

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Tomato Propagation for a Winter Harvest

As you can imagine, tomatoes are a staple in our household. We grow a lot of them and process them into many different products. We can tomato quarters, stewed tomatoes, make plain sauce, pizza sauce and spaghetti sauce and tomatoes … Continue reading

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