Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Category: Urban Survival

Urban Survival

Raised bed cucumbers squash and lettuce

Example of a raised bed garden with cucumbers, squash, lettuce, squash and zucchini. I would like to thank Awakeaware1016 over at the forum for post posting this video and thread.

My suggestions

The green onions, lettuce and cucumbers are ok to plant together – all of them have a high nitrogen requirement.

Looks like you will run out of room with the squash. Allow at least 2 – 3 feet on each side of the squash plants for growth. With the right soil and fertilizer, those squash plants are going to get pretty big.

Squash needs a well balanced fertilizer, such as 13-13-13.

The raised bed is nice. What I suggest, next year build a raised bed based on fertilizer requirements.

Lettuce, onions and cucumbers go in one bed – all of them can use high nitrogen fertilizer, such as 21-0-0 or something like 16-6-12.

Tomatoes, squash and zucchini would go in the second bed – all of them use a balanced fertilizer, such as a slow release mature and something like 13-13-13.

Just about anything with large leafs is going to need more nitrogen then say tomatoes.

Keep this in mind when you plant your garden, lets take 13-13-13 as an example.

first 13 – nitrogen, promotes stalk and leaf production, such as corn, greens and spinach

second 13 – phosphate, promotes root production, such as potatoes

third 13 – potash, promotes pod production, such as peas, beans, squash.

Cucumbers require nitrogen to prevent them from getting a pointy end.

Looks like your project is off to a good start and keep up the good work.

Post your comments in this forum thread – My victory garden and first YouTube video 2012

Remembering Hurricane Ike Three Years Later

hurricane ike floodingIts simple amazing how much time has passed under the bridge in the last 3 years. On September 13, 2008 Hurricane Ike made landfall, and changed the lives of tens of thousands of people forever.

Mom and Dads house was totaled, sold to the insurance company and demolished.

One of my best friends has rebuilt and now has a nice place.

My brother has rebuilt and seems to be no worse for the wear.

It was somewhere around 10:00pm or 10:30 that I lost phone contact with my kids who were riding out Hurricane Ike in Houston. I figured they were ok, but I worried about them until I knew for sure they were safe.

The winds with Ike were not near as bad as Rita, but the storm surge with Ike was probably 10X worse the Rita. With Rita southeast Texas got a little storm surge, but nothing like what came in with Ike.

The next morning after Ike passed through, my family and I left the shelter we were staying at and went home. I hooked to pit up to my truck and pulled the pit around to the front of my house. I wanted to pit fired up and cooking something, so that the people driving down the street would be assured that life would return to normal.

Ideas for a Get Home Bag

Maxpedition Noatak

Something happened to the main power feed for my town, and then the backup power feed failed. Someone said it was related to the wildfire about 15 miles north of here, but I do not have any proof of that.

First thing I realized was that we do not have a radio here at work that works off batteries. Once outside power is cut, we lose all communications with the outside world. My boss pulled out a hand crank radio, but the hand crank was locked up to the point where the handle could not be turned.

I thought about getting a $10 am/fm radio with some lithium batteries to keep at my desk. The power does not go off very often, but when it does it would be nice to get some news from the local radio station.

Second thing was that I needed a flashlight. I have a small AAA light on my key ring, but something a little larger would have been nice. My little AAA light does good for close in work, like plugging computer wires into the back of a computer, or lighting up a small room. To make sure the battery has plenty of life, I used an energizer lithium battery.

Making bug out plans

Flooded roads from Hurricane IkeSome type of disaster has either arrived or is heading your way – whether its an earthquake, hurricane, food shortages due to a new disease outbreak,,,,, you and your family need to get out of the city. You have made plans to stay at a rural farm with some friends, but the problem is getting out of the city.

Fuel – the very first problem your going to run into is having enough fuel to get out. Once the panic buying starts, fuel is going to be one of the first things people buy up. Everyone will be filling up their gas cans, cars, trucks, generators, 55 gallon drums,,,, and as a result, the gas stations will be cleaned out. The first people to leave the cities will help finish off the fuel supplies in rural areas. So don’t think that your going to find a gas station in a small town to get fuel, its not going to happen, everyone else will beat you to it.

Maps – as the major roadways become clogged with cars and trucks, your going to need to find an alternate route. When parts of southeast Texas evacuated for Hurricane Ike, people from Houston, Port Arthur, Bridge City, Lumberton, Orange,,,, sat in line for hours. On high 69/96/287 leaving Port Arthur, Texas – people were running out of gas sitting on the highway. The highway department had to send tanker trucks out to fill peoples cars and trucks up with fuel to keep the lines moving. What normally took a 1 hour drive, took 10 hours.

5 Things Survivalist Should Stockpile

Hurricane ike flooding

Let’s take a few minutes and talk about five things survivalist should stockpile. This could be for just about any type of disaster. Whether it is a hurricane, flood, wildfire… what are items that could be used to bug out?

This list is based on my own personal experiences with numerous tropical storms and hurricanes. Having grown up along the Gulf of Mexico, I have survived devastating hurricanes and tropical storms that flooded southeast Texas.

5. Fuel

When SHTF, your going to need a way to get out of town. Whether its a forest fire, hurricane, chemical spill,,,, keep enough gas in your tank to get away from the affected zone.

When a hurricane rolls trough the southern states, one of the first things to dry up is gasoline. People start filling their tanks up, the lines get long, and gas stations run out of gas.

4. Non-perishable Foods

This is any kind of food that does not need to be kept frozen or cold. There are so many options out there, this list could be a mile long – mountain house foods, #10 cans, family sized cans, any type of can goods, peanut butter, honey, freeze dried foods, food stored in mylar bags, dehydrated foods.

Drinking Water in an Urban SHTF Survival Situation

water well for SHTF survival

If the water went off tonight, what kind of plans do you have in place? As with everything else in my survival plans, water is broken down into 3 phases – short term, medium term, and long term solution.

Short Term – this is your bottled water. Most people have a couple of cases of bottled water laying around somewhere. On a trip to the grocery store most people might grab a case or two of bottled water to have around for guest or parties.

Some survivalist stockpile water in 35 or 55 gallon drums.

When the water goes out, the bottled and stockpiled water will go first. Its convenient, you just un-screw the top of the bottle and the water is ready to drink. Most people like to take the easy way out, and bottled water is about as easy as it gets.

Barter Items For After SHTF / TEOTWAWKI

If SHTF tomorrow, 12 months later, what items would you have that you could use for barter? Is bartering even in your plans, have you even thought about it? The other day I was walking through wal-mart and was thinking about low cost, good quality trade items. There is a difference in good quality, medium quality and poor quality barter items.

Here are some examples of barter/trade items:

Gold and silver only have value when someone values money. Once society has broken down to where its a dog eat dog world, I’am willing to bet that food will have more value then gold and silver.

Solar panels, seeds, first aid supplies are a good quality trade items.

Clothing might have an “ok” trade value.

Hand tools might be a medium quality trade item. If your cars and trucks are not running, what value are hand tools.

Fruit Trees and the Urban Survivalist

Peaches

Fruit trees are the friend of the urban survivalist. Unlike a garden, you do not have to replant the fruit tree every year, during the spring your neighbors will be jealous of the beautiful blooms, dwarf fruit trees can be planted just about anywhere, and some types of fruit trees are high producers. Meaning, that with just 1 or 2 trees, your family should be able to put up plenty of preserves.

Some types of dwarfs may not get 8 feet tall and might be something good to plant in the corners of your fence. If you have a fence in your backyard, what do you have planted in the corners right now anyway? Planting the fruit tree across the back fence might provide it with more sun light, as compared to planting it between the houses.

Over the past few years I have made it a point to plant some fruit trees. Some of the types I have planted include peach, plum, apple, and a fig tree.

When picking the different types of trees that you want to plant, take into consideration when the fruit is ready to be picked. I like to plant different types of trees so that the fruit ripens at different times. One might ripen in July, another might ripen in August, and another might ripen in September. This gives me time to preserve the fruit. Even if I do not preserve the fruit, having the fruit ripen at different times spreads out my food supply.

Some bug out plans

Some bug out plansPlease Rate This Article Bugging out of a major city sounds a lot easier then it actually is. Chances are the gas stations are going to be empty, and the roads are going to be packed. One of the keys to getting out a city safely, is to either leave early or […]

Generator Security

Generator SecurityPlease Rate This Article After hurricane Rita passed through, there were stories going around of peoples generators going off in the middle of the night, by the time they got outside all they saw was the tail lights of the truck leaving with their genny in the bed. Do not let this happen to […]

Food As a Comfort Blanket After a Disaster

Cooking at a survivalist camp

During a stressful situation, such as a disaster, food could be used as a comfort blanket. Just the smell of cooking food has a relaxing effect on people. This is probably an instinct from our ancestors roasting meat over an open fire.

After Hurricane Rita blew through in 2005, we returned home from the shelter only to find the yard covered with tree limbs. One tree in the back yard had blown down, but landed away from my house. Some of our group started cleaning up the yard, and piling the limbs up. While this cleaning up was going on I started cooking. The pit was fired up, some sausage and steaks were cooked and we all had a feast right before dark.

Even though the night before, while Hurricane Rita was blowing through, was very stressful, the first night home.

Grills and Ice Chest

Outdoor cooking grill

Open top grills – are good for using charcoal or small pieces of wood. Even though this grill is portable and can use either small pieces of wood or charcoal, the limiting factor is its size. Only small steaks or small sausages will fit on this grill.

With this device someone could easy cook for a small group of people. The user is not limited by propane of liquid fuel. As long as there is a supply of sticks or twigs this grill can be used. Try not to use wood with a lot of sap, such as pine as this will leave a residue on the food.

Pull behinds have limitations because of the trade off in lowered fuel economy and the amount of fuel that is required to use this size of pit. Keeping the wood dry is another problem. If the wood is in an uncovered truck bed, during a rain the wood will absorb the water, weighing down the truck and causing worse gas mileage

Grills

Water Wells and Urban Survival

water well for SHTF survival

Water, water everywhere and nar a drop to drink – is a classic statement from the rhyme of the ancient mariner. But in the case of urban survival, there is no water and there is nothing to drink.

Most urbanites depend on water supplied by the city – through the cities water system. However, this is also a weak point in disaster planning. Most cities and towns have prohibited their citizens from digging private wells. If that is the case in your area, its time to get the laws changed. Not being able to have your own water supply makes you and your family a slave to city. Free people do not ask permission to use something that is on their own property – or in the case of ground water, under their property. Slaves ask permission, freemen use what is theirs as they see fit.

Depending on the area where you live, that will define how deep the well has to be. If you are planning on installing a water pump, go ahead and set it up for an electric water pump as well as a hand powered pump. This would include a housing for the pump to go in, ground rod and maybe electrical wiring.

Instead of a hand powered pump, a solar powered unit could be installed and the solar cells could be placed on top of the pump house. But in this article, we will just be discussing hand powered pumps.

Panic Buying Before a Disaster

Panic buying before a disaster

When the public has and kind of advanced warning of a disaster – such as a hurricane or pandemic disease – people go into a panic buying mode. Keep this one thing in mind – if you do not have it before the panic buying kicks in, you will not be able to get it.

These images were taken as Hurricane Ike was approaching the Texas coast in September of 2008.

The list of items that disappears off the shelf first is rather short, but still long. It includes canned foods, bottled water, camp stoves and camp stove fuel, bread, flashlights, and other odd and end items.

The image to the left shows the camp stove selection at a local store right before Hurricane Ike made landfall in 2008. There were only a couple of stoves and just a little fuel left on the shelves. When this picture was taken, the hurricane was still 2 – 3 days from landfall. People were buying just about any kind of camp stove, lantern and fuel they could get their hands on.

It’s important to mention that people had buggies loaded down with charcoal for their outdoor grill. It it cooked, or could be used to cook, people were buying it up.

Kevin Felts © 2008 - 2018