The intense aroma and warmth fresh ginger adds to dishes is irreplaceable. The heat found in ginger is attributed to a chemical it contains called gingerol, which is closely related to the capsaicin found in hot peppers and the piperine in black pepper, but is much milder than the two. This mild heat, combined with floral and citrusy aromas, is what makes ginger such a versatile ingredient, just as vital in desserts such as gingersnaps and pumpkin pie as it is in savory dishes like Vietnamese-style chicken meatballs and tingling chili crisp.
When purchasing fresh ginger look for firm pieces, with taught tan skin, and minimal dry spots. If the ginger is looking shriveled, dried out, or has soft spots, it’s a sign the ginger is past its prime and won’t have good texture or flavor. Larger pieces tend to be less dried out because they have had fewer segments snapped off; the more that are snapped off, the more openings there are for moisture to escape. Some fresh ginger has a blue or green tinge on the flesh, which can be caused by long-term cold-storage or simply is an attribute of the particular varietal you picked up. In either case, it’s perfectly safe and doesn’t result in any significant changes to flavor once cooked.
Ginger is often called a root, but it is actually a rhizome, which means it is an underground stem that sends shoots and roots laterally in all directions. This is why ginger often looks so gnarly and knobby, making it tough to know where to get started when prepping it. Here are some tips on how to prep and store ginger, so you can easily incorporate it into your daily cooking.
Ginger Knife Skills: Peeling and Cutting
Although the skin on ginger is edible, it lacks flavor and, depending on how you plan to further process the ginger, can also lend an unpleasant texture to a dish. If I'm going to purée or blend my ginger (more on that below), then I don’t bother peeling it, because the blender will break the skin down completely, making it unnoticeable. If I'm cutting ginger into slices, matchsticks, or a fine dice, then it pays to take an extra moment to peel away the skin.
I find the easiest way to peel ginger is to start with a vegetable peeler to remove the majority of the skin. I then switch to a spoon, which is good for scraping away any remaining skin trapped within the grooves and nooks of the knob.
Each finger of ginger has tough fibers running lengthwise through it, so the key to getting tender pieces is to always cut across the grain, just as you would for carving a steak. Because one piece of ginger can have several fingers branching out in different directions, I like to start by separating each to make sure I’m always cutting each segment against the grain.
Once I’ve divided the knob of peeled ginger into individual fingers, I cut crosswise for slices. If a recipe calls for matchsticks, I then stack the slices and cut across again to yield thin and tender matchsticks. It can be tempting to cut ginger lengthwise for long matchsticks, but they’ll have those long fibers running lengthwise through them, resulting in a texture that’s stringy and tough. If for aesthetic reasons you prefer longer matchsticks, it’s better to cut diagonally across the finger, like slicing a baguette, which allows you to have long pieces that are still cut against the grain.
Bulk Prep: Purée and Freeze
If you’re anything like me, then you know what it feels like to regularly move through mountains of ginger. I use ginger frequently, so I don’t have time for peeling and fussy knife cuts—instead, I prefer to blend it into a purée and freeze it in bulk. Because the blender will be doing most of the work, I save time by leaving the peel on. However, it is still important to thinly slice the ginger against the grain. Even a high-end blender like the Ninja Personal Blender will struggle to break down tough fibers.
After slicing the ginger crosswise, I blend it into a smooth purée with just enough water to get things moving. I finally freeze the ginger purée flat in zip top bags. Any time I need ginger I just have to crack off a piece—since the ginger is frozen flat, it quickly melts back into a purée. The purée is perfect for instant ginger tea, for adding some kick to your morning smoothie, and for stirring into braises.
Need Only a Little: Peel, Freeze Whole, and Grate as NeededAn unpeeled knob of ginger can hold up pretty well in the fridge for a couple weeks, but if you use it only occasionally you’re better off storing it in the freezer. After peeling a knob of ginger, I wrap it tightly in plastic and store it in the freezer whole. I then use a microplane to grate if from frozen for delicate flakes of ginger snow, which easily work their way into cocktails and sauces. Because you’ve already gotten the fussy peeling out of the way, you can quickly add a punch of ginger to any dish.
Best Emergency Food SupplyIn the event of an emergency the first thing that comes to mind is checking on your loved ones and making sure everyone is safe. Family tends to gather together and shelter in place until the situation begins to pass. Tragedy can strike in different ways, for instance, if the electricity was to go out all of the perishable food would be ruined within hours unless you had a generator. Gas powered generators are reliable but the newest generators rely on solar power and natural gas. Having a supply of food on hand can sustain a family in the event of an emergency, and it's important to choose food items that can be stored safely and are easily accessible. Purchase a ready-made supply of food to keep on hand from a company specializing in non-perishable emergency food, or pull together your own inventory using the list provided. If you need help to access the printable list offered here, check out these helpful tips.
Long Term Food Supply ChecklistEmergency preparedness expert Dr. Francis Edwards says there is more to gathering emergency food supplies than just buying a large quantity of canned goods. "Think about what you ordinarily eat and drink. I want to eat and drink what I eat and drink every day. Think about the psychological aspect - what do you reach for when you're stressed? You want comfort food."
Robert Siciliano, personal and home security specialist with Best Home Security Companies and best-selling author, agrees with the need to include comfort foods in a food list for an emergency preparedness kit. According to Siciliano, "FEMA recommends the following items when selecting emergency food supplies."
What to Buy for an Emergency Food SupplyDr. Edwards emphasizes the need for other life-sustaining supplies that should be kept with emergency food. "Discuss medication needs with your doctor. Always have a 30-day supply of medications. Your community will bring in food and water in an emergency, but nobody is going to bring your medications." Add non-prescription medication and vitamin supplements to your food supply for easy access in an emergency.
Siciliano asserts the importance of an ample emergency water supply to accompany the food supply. "Buy pre-packaged bottled water and store it under beds." He also suggests having rain barrels for collecting rainwater. "Place the barrel at the base of your home's gutter."
Keep a supply of food on hand for any pets within the home as well.
Purchase Ready-Made Emergency KitsSiciliano endorses three options for purchasing ready-made emergency preparedness food supplies.
#1 The Survival Prep Store: This company provides prepackaged, dehydrated meals that only need water to prepare. The long shelf life of these foods (up to 25 years) makes this a great option for long-term emergency preparedness.
#2 Valley Food Storage: Freeze dried foods and meals are available in a variety of quantities, and they offer gluten-free and dairy-free options as well. Free shipping is available on order of $150 or more.
#3 Costco: Membership warehouse Costco offers a rotating stock of emergency food kits and individual items alongside their other emergency-preparedness supplies.
Emergency Food Supply CheapInstead of buying a ready-made kit, you can also choose to piece together your own kit using foods that are specifically designed to have a long shelf-life. As an editor for The Sustainable Survivalist, I was sent samples from The Survival Prep Store, a company that makes dehydrated meals designed for emergency preparedness and for other scenarios such as camping trips. The food I reviewed was incredibly easy to prepare, had a long shelf life, was easy to store, and tasted good. Survival Prep Store's food boasts a 25-year shelf life in pouches and a 25-year shelf life in cans, which makes it ideal for long-term food supplies.
How to Store Emergency Food SuppliesStore your emergency food in a place where it is accessible. A cool, dry area is best. "Buy a large trash bin on wheels and use that as a storage bin," advises Dr. Edwards. "It's easy to move." Siciliano adds, "Store food in a place above what might get flooded and away from pests or animals."
Dr. Edwards says some food should be stored in the family car, and parents should consider creating an emergency food kit that each child can store at school.
Rotate your food supply to make sure the items you have on hand haven't expired. Pay attention to expiration dates and check periodically to ensure all items are still intact in their packages.
Be PreparedHaving shelf-stable food available in an emergency can keep a bad situation from turning into a catastrophic one. Whether you piece together an inventory or purchase a ready-made, full food supply kit, knowing that there is food available in an emergency can bring comfort to everyone in your household.
As part of every school's emergency preparedness program, a classroom lockdown safety kit should be included in the supplies of each classroom.
The Need for Safety Lockdown Kits in Schools
As more acts of violence target schools, the need for safety lockdown kits in every classroom becomes clear. Whether the violence is initiated by a student or intruder within the school, an armed person outside the building or the threat of a terrorist attack in the vicinity, school officials must be prepared to keep their students safe.
Classroom lockdown kits are also important in the event of natural disasters. Depending on the area where you live, school emergency preparations may include keeping students in their classrooms to keep them safe. These types of natural disasters include:
What is Included in a Classroom Safety Lockdown KitWhen danger or disaster is eminent, a safety lockdown kit for the classroom provides each student with the essentials they need for a period of three days or 72 hours. Most of the companies that offer school survival lockdown kits have two different versions, basic and deluxe.
Basic Classroom Lockdown KitA basic lockdown kit generally includes emergency survival supplies for an average size classroom of 30 students. Since most classrooms do not contain their own bathroom, lockdown kits also include a portable toilet. Although lockdown kits differ slightly from company to company, the following is an example of the contents of a basic, or standard, kit.
The deluxe lockdown kit may include all of the items that are included in the basic kit plus the following:
Making sure that each classroom, from preschool through college, contains a classroom lockdown safety kit is one aspect of school emergency preparedness. Each member of the community, from parents and teachers to administrators and security guards, share the responsibility of keeping schools safe.
What legally is the smallest house you can build in Texas? Before I answer the question, what legally is the smallest house you can build in Texas, I want to point out that I’m not a lawyer and it’s always best when dealing with anything legal to consult a real lawyer.
That being said, I’ve done a lot of research on the subject matter and here is what I’ve found.
The quick answer is about 200 square feet, based on the International Residential Code (IRC). But there are other things to consider …
All homes, no matter how big or small are subject to building and safety regulations.
For your reference, here is a quick link to the Texas Administrative Code regarding homes on wheels.
A tiny house on wheels (in Texas) that is less than 400 square feet is what the state calls a house trailer and falls under the RV laws.
Your tiny house on wheels must be certified by the American National Safety Institute (ANSI) to meet the personal property tax exception rules. If you are buying a pre-built tiny house on wheels, make sure it is certified by ANSI.
If your tiny house is on wheels, don’t forget you must register it as an RV (recreational vehicle).
If your tiny house is built on a foundation and not on wheels, it’s considered real property and subject to property taxes just like any regular house might be.
This tiny home will be subject to local building code regulations. Although it’s worth noting, most rural areas in Texas have no local building codes.
Building codes means getting permits and lots of inspections. In fact, for new residential construction on a vacant lot, a minimum of three inspections must be performed during the construction project to ensure code compliance, That’s in addition to contractor inspections for things like electrical and plumbing.
This can be time-consuming and costly. This is why so many people prefer building their tiny house on wheels.
If you don’t comply with all building regulations the county in which you build in could actually fine you a daily fee, until you get in compliance (Could even be $1,000 a day) or require you take the building down altogether.
Some towns in Texas like Spur, Texas encourages the building of tiny homes, but you must submit your house design in advance for approval and agree to connect your home to the electric grid and town’s water and sewage system.
There is a thing called the IRC, or the International Residential Code. Here are some highlights…
So if you build a tiny house, that is laid out like a traditional home, it could be as small as 208 square feet and still be legal.
A tiny house is fairly self-descriptive: it is a very small dwelling unit that is free-standing, usually styled to look like a site-built home. Tiny houses typically range from 100 to 400 square feet in size and often come mounted on a wheeled trailer chassis so that they can be towed behind a vehicle. Similar to a micro-unit, the space in a tiny house usually has convertible or modular furniture that plays different roles, depending on what activity is taking place. Tiny houses on wheels typically have recreational vehicle-style utility hookups – powered with electricity, external holding tanks; those that venture off the grid can rely on solar or even no electricity at all. Diminutive domiciles that are permanent structures (not on wheels) tie-in to utilities in the manner of a traditional house. Tiny houses should not be confused with mobile homes, which are generally more than 600 square feet in size, and are transported via semi-trailer truck to a destination where they are placed permanently or semi-permanently.
In Austin as long as you get all the proper permits and go through the correct inspections, etc. as any new build would, they don’t seem to care how small the house is (as long as it follows the rules of the IRC).
In Dallas, tiny houses are often referred to as “granny flats”, “granny pods” or “mother-in-law cottage”. They are legal only if you apply for a special exemption and they don’t violate your property’s homeowner association’s rules.
But keep in mind this is talking about building a tiny house on a property that houses a main, regular size house. The regulations aren’t clear about building a tiny house as the only house on the land.
So just how small is too small in Texas?
It’s actually the HOA that could be a big problem for most Texas cities. As long as you follow IRC rules, I have found most places in Texas who have rules, and building codes, don’t care about actual size and don’t even reference size restrictions when you get your permit.
The reality is, you are going to need food to survive. In a worst-case scenario, there will be no more grocery stores and you’ll have only yourself to depend on.
This is where your farming or gardening skills will come into play.
An important food to consider growing is the potato. They are high in fiber, Vitamin B6, Potassium and Vitamin C. It’s also high in carbohydrates – about 26 grams in a medium potato. Let’s not forget it also has protein and even calcium.
Potatoes can also be used to brew alcoholic beverages such as vodka or to make snack foods like potato chips.
Potatoes are actually underground stems, that become swollen with stored starch. Depending on the variety you grow, they should mature anywhere 90 to 180 days.
The potatoes grow right below the surface of the soil, so to prevent them from becoming exposed (and turning green), mound the surrounding soil around the potato plant several times as it grows, leaving only about 6 inches of the top growth visible.
Keep the plants well-watered and free of weeds.
Whenever harvesting potatoes, make sure that you handle them gently to avoid bruising. Do not expose them to the sun or strong wind longer than necessary.
So Just How Do You Grow Potatoes?
Well, first you need to consider the type of potatoes you want to grow. I suggest starting with a russet, as they are an excellent source of vitamin C, B6, magnesium, fiber, and also contain some iron.
Growing russet potatoes in your garden is satisfying and easy to do since this vegetable crop requires little maintenance.
Instead of planting the seed from potato flowers, you’ll find it much easier and get quicker results by planting cut-up pieces or small-sized tubers called “seed potatoes“, or you can also cut up the ones that are sprouting in your pantry.
You’ll want to plant the seed potato sprout-side-up in a hole 4 inches deep. Make trenches in the soil about 4 inches deep and plant your potatoes about 4 inches apart at a minimum. Space determines the size of your potatoes. The closer they’re planted, the smaller your tubers come out. So while you want to put them 4 inches apart at a minimum, 8 to 12 inches is okay too.
Press firmly so it makes good contact with the soil and then cover it with about 2 inches of compost or soil.
Next, you’ll want to keep an eye on your plan, and when the stem has grown 6 inches or taller, it’s time to cover half of the stem with another 2 to 4 inches of soil.
Drought stress is a problem when growing potatoes so make sure your plat is getting 1 to 2 inches of water a week. In addition, you’ll want to add a 2- to 4-inch layer of organic mulch on top to conserve moisture.
Make sure the potatoes stay covered with soil. Those exposed to the sun might develop toxic green patches on your potato. If that happens, you will want ot cut them off, before eating the potato. Potatoes are pretty easy to grow, but you have to be careful about keeping them covered in soil and making sure they get enough water.
You should always remember that access to fresh foods might not always be possible. You should consider long term food options as well.
Best Medications to Stockpile for Emergencies and Everyday Use
Picture this: You’ve woken up at 3 AM with a pounding headache, lockdown measures are in place, and the nearest health facility is miles away. In such a scenario, having a well-stocked home pharmacy could prove decisive.
Stockpiling on the right medication is essential in handling emergencies, combating sickness, and promoting the well-being of your family. But which medications should you include in your pharmacy? Read on to find out:
Important Considerations While Stockpiling Medication
First things first; it’s important to grasp some of the best practices when it comes to maintaining a well-stocked home pharmacy. It’s not just a case of buying medications based on recommendations you find online. Here are some of the most important considerations:
Stockpiling medications is a highly personalized endeavor. Sure, there are some must-have drugs such as painkillers and anti-inflammatories that everyone is likely to use—but others depend on the unique needs of your household.
Evaluate your specific needs/risk factors or those of your family members—and stockpile medications that they’re likely to use every day or for emergencies. Consider whether anyone has a chronic medical condition, allergies, or drug preference. Also consider the demographics such as age, disability, gender, etc.
What is the ideal quantity of drugs to buy? Well, there’s no clear answer to this question. It comes down to your needs – i.e., store the amount you’d need in the worst-case scenario. But ensure it’s a reasonable quantity that factors in the expiration dates. You don’t want to overstock and throw away medications after they go unused long past their expiration date.
Contrary to common practice, the medicine cabinet above your bathroom sink is not the best place to store medication. Humidity and heat are not kind on shelf-life and potency. The general rule of thumb is to store medication in a cool, dark, and dry location—preferably in their original packaging. And ensure all the medication or chemicals in your household are stored out of reach of children.
10 of the Best OTC and Prescription Medications to Stockpile
Stockpiling on medication doesn’t have to be an expensive or stressful exercise. With the right tips and recommendations to nudge you in the right direction, you can be well-prepared for emergencies or any other use.
The meds listed below are a good starting point—but your medicine cabinet might be different and unique to your needs.
It’s a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) that’s effective for conditions such as headaches, common cold, toothaches, common cold, muscle aches, and arthritis management. Aspirin may also be recommended to prevent blood clots (i.e., it’s a blood thinner) when used in low dosages—consequently helping reduce the risk of heart attacks and stroke.
Ibuprofen is available as a syrup, capsules, tablets, spray, mousse, and as a gel. It’s sometimes combined with other pain-relieving medications such as Acetaminophens to better manage fever and pain. However, high doses or prolonged use may increase the risk of stroke and heart attack.
Unlike Ibuprofen or Aspirin, Acetaminophen is not an anti-inflammatory—and it has minimal side effects as long you keep consumption within the recommended limits.
Please note that Pseudoephedrine can only be purchased from the pharmacy and quantities buyable in one go are restricted. This is because it’s a stimulant that may be used in the manufacturing of illicit drugs.
Keep in mind that it’s applied topically, regularly, and you should wash your hands after use.
It helps manage infections in superficial wounds—but it’s not advisable for deep puncture wounds and deeper infections.
Disclaimer: Antibiotics should be used under the direction of a licensed and qualified health care provider. Prescriptions are typically made after accurate diagnosis—hence the decision to stockpile demands careful consideration.
Taking the disclaimer above into consideration, the best antibiotic to stockpile for emergencies includes Cephalexin (Keflex), Metronidazole (Flagyl), and Ciprofloxacin (Cipro).
Are You Prepared?
The importance of a well-stocked medicine cabinet cannot be understated. It can help solve day-to-day medication needs and prepare you for emergencies.
Start by evaluating the medications in your medicine cabinet, the needs of your family, and some of the recommendations in this list—then plan on what you’re going to stock up on in your next drug store run.
Prepper Deodorant Alternative – Limes! If in the future you find yourself in the worst of situations where there are no longer stores to buy things you need, or even factories to produce items, what will you do for simple things like deodorant?
Sure you can stock up now but deodorant and antiperspirants usually expire in 3 years if stored properly and as quickly as 12 months after being opened. So what will you do then?
Turns out the answer is as simple as planting a lime tree.
Yes, it’s true. Limes are great at neutralizing odor and sweat. Lime juice is an antibacterial so it works great as a natural deodorant since bacteria is what causes the odor when we sweat. The idea of using limes as a deodorant has been around for hundreds of years but made popular once again by beauty blogger Farah Dhukai.
To apply simply cut a lime in half and rub it on your armpits. Some people have put the juice of a lime into a spray bottle and applied it that way, but it really is just as simple as rubbing half of a lime directly to your pits and you’re good to go.
A few very important words of warning. Limes are all natural. So you don’t risk any chemical reactions. That’s a good thing but that being said, keep in mind that limes are highly acidic (which is what kills bacteria), so don’t use it directly after shaving. It will be painful and cause quite a bit of irritation. You shouldn’t have any irritation problems if you don’t apply to freshly shaved armpits.
Limes have been known to make your skin photosensitive, so if you use lime juice as a deodorant, don’t expose your armpits to the sun. It can cause your skin to burn. This is also why it’s important you wash your hands and other parts of your body that might have gotten some lime juice on them after applying to your armpits.
This part is very important — Lime juice can cause burns on the skin when exposed to sunlight so please make sure that any area exposed to sunlight is rinsed off thoroughly such as your hands, or the surrounding skin of your arms.
The last bit of advice is to wait for the lime juice to fully dry before getting dressed. You don’t’ want to risk the lime juice dripping onto your clothes and accidentally causing bleaching or discoloration stains.
When it comes to prepping, you have to be reasonable and go with what works best in your region. I love Mangos but realistically they just don’t do well where I’m from. Luckily for me, they do grow in Florida, and a friend of mine, Pete Gandolfo happens to have a great Mango tree and shared information about them for us, in case you live in an area that Mango trees grow well.
Mangos are a sweet, juicy tropical fruit that typically become ripe in summer. This juicy stone fruit that belongs to the cashew family.
Mango trees grow anywhere from 115–131 feet tall, with a crown radius of 33 feet. The trees are long-lived, as some specimens still fruit after 300 years.
Classified as drupes, mangos vary in shape (nearly round, oval, ovoid-oblong), size, and color depending upon the variety. Mangos may be greenish, greenish-yellow, yellow, red, orange, or purple and weigh from a few ounces to more than 5 pounds (2.3 kg). The skin is smooth and leathery, surrounding the fleshy, pale-yellow to deep-orange edible portion. The fruits possess a single large, flattened, kidney-shaped seed that is enclosed in a woody husk.
Mangos have been cultivated in Asian for 1000s of years. They eventually made their way to East Africa and then to Brazil, Bermuda, and Mexico. Nowadays they grow in most frost-free tropical or warmer subtropical climates.
In general, mangos in Florida should be planted in the warmest areas of the state, i.e., along with the southeast and southwest coasts.
In Florida, mangos bloom from December to April depending upon climatic conditions and variety. Pollination is by various insects such as thrips, flies, and, to a small extent, honey bees.
So why grow mangos? Well, besides the fact that they taste great, the fruit has more than 20 vitamins and nutrients. Mangos are a superfood and a cup of mangos is just 100 calories, so its a healthy, sweet treat.
Mangos are a wonderful addition to salads, along with other fruits such as mandarin oranges, grapes, apples, and pineapples. Impressive amounts of vitamin C, vitamin A, and flavonoids like betacarotene, alphacarotene and beta-cryptoxanthin in mangos help provide benefits, such as healthy immune function, normal blood pressure, good vision, and strong bones, plus added protection from lung, mouth, colon, breast and prostate cancers, leukemia, and stroke. Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) produces hormones in your brain.
So how do you grow a mango tree?Mangos have been called the “king of fruits,” because they are luscious, juicy, delicious, and sweet. They’re widely cultivated in tropical and sub-tropical climates. The best time to plant a mango tree is in the summer when it’s warm, as they like lots of sun. This is why mangos do better in places like California and Florida.
To grow a mango tree, you’ll want to start by preparing the mango seed.
Position your tree where it will receive full sun for best fruit production. New mango tree planting is done in late winter to early spring when the plant is not actively growing.
Prepare the site for your mango tree by digging a hole that is twice as wide and deep as the root ball.
Once you plant it outside remember to water the new tree to or three times in the first week, flooding the area surrounding the trunk. Also fertilize the tree after new growth begins, giving it a high nitrogen plant food, at least once a month. This will encourage flowering and fruiting.
Keep the soil evenly moist. Sprouting should occur in about 2 to 3 weeks.
Mango tree care is similar to that of any fruit tree. Water the trees deeply to saturate the long taproot. Allow the top surface of the soil to dry to a depth of several inches before watering again. Withhold irrigation for two months prior to flowering and then resume once fruits begin to produce.
What are the best fruit trees to plant?
While you need a variety of food sources to maintain a happy, healthy life, you are going to have to be realistic. You can’t plant 23 different types of farms. That’s why you shouldn’t discount fruit trees. A fruit tree will produce food, take up less space, and require less maintenance than a full-blown garden.
That’s not to say you won’t need to plant a garden eventually, but adding fruit trees to your property will be a huge benefit. So what kind of trees do you need? That will vary depending on where you live.
Fruit Trees are the best! Fruit trees don’t require the same time, care, and attention that a full-blown garden does, and they can provide you with fabulous tasting fruit in an emergency. Fruit trees are a must-have for any prepper garden.
Here are some fruit trees that you might consider adding to your prepper garden.
Not every type of tree is right for every region but you can easily find out what is best to grow in your area simply by googling the best fruit trees for (your state). ie: Best Fruit Trees for Texas.
Peach trees are fun to grow and are one of the fastest choices, and while peaches and nectarines aren’t the same fruit, they do have similar growing needs.
Plum trees are great because they require less care than most other fruit trees. They adapt to a wide variety of conditions and are more compact than other fruit trees that require little to no work.
There are a large variety of apples so you’ll want to research which tastes best. There are 2,500 varieties of apples in the US alone. The most common is Red Delicious, followed by Gala, Golden Delicious, Granny Smith, and Fuji apples.
You’ll be happy to know that most apple trees aren’t hard to grow. The great thing about apples is, not only does it taste great on its own, but you can also make some great things from them like apple juice, and apple pie. Growing apples is a long term commitment. You aren’t going to be able to plant an apple tree today and start enjoying the fruit weeks later. A large apple tree can take 8 to 10 years to produce its first fruit, a small tree usually 3 to 5 years. But if you take care of your apple tree it could live as long as 100 years.
Apples have some impressive health benefits. They are rich in fiber, disease-fighting antioxidants, and a variety of vitamins and minerals including potassium, folate, niacin, and vitamins A, B, C, E and K. Eating apples has been associated with a lower risk of a variety of cancers, stroke, and diabetes.
Nectarine trees are almost identical to the peach in appearance, culture, and care. Nectarines are a delicious, summer-growing fruit with an autumn harvest. They’re usually a little smaller than the average peach and have a smooth skin. Uses of nectarines are the same as those of peaches too. They can be eaten fresh, baked into pies and cobblers, and are a sweet, tasty addition to a fruit salad. Let’s learn more about how to grow nectarines.
Earlier we talked about the need for a fresh, natural water source if you are going to build your own sustainable community. But what’s next? Well after you have secured a source of water, you are going to need food to survive.
My mother has a lemon tree in her yard and that single tree producers hundreds of fresh lemons every year — far more than a single-family could ever use.
But lemon’s are great for other things besides just eating. The citrus can be used to make cheese. You can use lemons as a cleaning solution or as a diuretic. Lemon juice also helps stop bleeding gums and reduces toothaches. Lemon juice is a powerful antiseptic. There are just so many things you can do with lemons so don’t discount planting a lemon tree on your property.
Fruit trees are going to be your saving grace. They take almost no work to maintain and if worst comes to worst, let’s be real … you are going to have enough work to do. Having a few fruit trees is a no-brainer.
How to care for a lemon tree in a pot
Unless you are able to grow your own food, you aren’t going to be able to survive long term under the worst-case scenario. You need food and water to survive and in the worst of situations, you may no longer have something like a grocery store to visit.
This is why you need to learn some basic gardening skills. You need to learn how to grow things like herbs, fresh fruits, and vegetables. Growing food will supplement and stretch your stored food supply.
While you may be thinking of growing things like apples or tomatoes, another important thing you’ll want to grow is a lemon tree — yes, a lemon tree. You can easily buy a lemon tree on Amazon.
While there are some amazing benefits to drinking lemon water, lemons have other benefits. Lemons bring just the right amount of sweetness and tart to baking. Create delicious loaves, muffins, biscuits, slices, and cakes and, in some instances, you can take things up a notch with a drizzle of lemon syrup or a sprinkling of zest. Lemon juice delivers the acidic component to citrus vinaigrette used to dress a green or tomato salad, as well as seafood. You can also use lemons to make homemade cleaners and even beauty products.
So let’s talk about how to pot a lemon tree.
A new lemon tree will grow fine in an 8-inch diameter container to start. Two to three-year-old trees will need a 10 to 12-inch diameter container. Eventually, you’ll need a 16 to 20-gallon container or one-half whiskey barrel-sized container for long-term growth.
Lemon trees need well-drained soil, so selecting the right potting mix is important. Commercial potting mixes with peat moss, perlite, vermiculite, and compost are fine to use as long as the soil is light enough to drain water well. If your soil is still too heavy, try adding hardwood bark chips to the mix to increase the number of air spaces.Place bare root trees in the container, gently packing in the soil around the roots to remove air spaces. Plant so the lemon tree roots are just below the soil surface, but the crown is just above it. If transplanting an existing lemon tree into a larger container, remove the old tree, and examine the roots. Cut off any dead, broken, and circling root and repot. Water well.