Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Tag: best crops for shtf

The Case Against Corn for a SHTF Survival Food Crop

Using a tiller to work manure into a garden

Regardless to popular belief, corn is not a good crop for surviving a SHTF Doomsday event.

When the topic of food crops for SHTF comes up in the forum, there is one that is talked about more than others, and that is corn. There is a common misconception that all someone needs to do to grow corn is to plant the three sisters – beans, squash and corn.

In theory, the beans are supposed to supply the corn with much needed nitrogen. While beans and peas produce their own nitrogen, it is not in a form that can be easily used by other crops. In other words, there is more to growing corn than just planting beans with it.

Then there are the various types of corn. Corn seed we get from the local farm supply store is a far cry from native corn grown by indigenous Native American tribes.

Corn After SHTF

Growing Onions

Home grown onions

The onion is a national crop; as widely though not quite as extensively grown as the potato. It is available as a money crop for the farm gardener.

Choice of Soil — Heavy, stiff clay land is to be avoided. Sand and gravel dry out too quickly. Stony land renders good culture difficult. The best soil for onions is a deep, rich, mellow loam. Soils which afford natural advantages for irrigation should not be overlooked, as the rainfall is often lacking when greatly needed.

Fertilizers — Onion culture demands high manuring. No amount of rotted stable manure is likely to be excessive. A ton per acre of high-grade, complete fertilizer is not too much, if moisture can be supplied. Hen manure is a good top dressing for onion-beds, furnishing the needed nitrogen. Nitrate of soda is a good source of nitrogen, if nitrogen must be purchased. The clovers and other leguminous crops yield the cheapest nitrogen. Wood ashes, kainit, etc., furnish potash. Either ground bone or acid phosphate will give the needed phosphoric acid. An analysis of the onion shows that it carries away fertility in just about the proportions furnished by stable manure.

Old Style Cabbage Farming

Early cabbage is not a farm gardener’s crop at the North, though in the Southern States the early varieties can be grown by farmers for shipment to the great Northern markets. The Northern farmer, unless provided with glass, usually finds more profit in the later and larger sorts, which mature in autumn.

Soil.—Rich, loamy soil, containing much clay, is best for this vegetable, which is a rank feeder. Large amounts of manure are demanded. The manure is best applied in a partially rotted form, as fresh manure of any kind (especially hog manure) is liable to produce the disease or deformity known as club-root, the spores of the disease apparently being in the fresh manure; though land too long cropped with cabbage is likely to produce the same disease without the application of fresh manure of any kind.

Seed — It is of especial importance that good seed be planted, as cabbage varies so much and shows such a disposition to go back to undesirable types that great dissatisfaction and loss attend all experiments with poorly-selected seed. The choice of seed not infrequently determines the size and success of the crop. Expert cabbage growers are well aware of this fact.

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