Prepare, Sustain, Thrive and Survive Simply

Fresh greens in summer camp

Container Gardening

Arugula, Swiss Chard, Radishes, and Garlic

Will you be spending some time off the grid this summer? Here are some ways to eat well off the grid during growing season.  One of the first things I like to do when setting up the summer camp is to plant seeds.

In a hauled water situation I always prefer to do something useful with water left over from washing dishes and bathing. It’s also good to have a ready supply of fresh greens on hand.

I mostly plant seeds that will provide quick nutrition as salad greens. So far I planted radish, mustard, peas, arugula, Swiss chard and sunflower greens in planters, and some store-bought garlic cloves that were sprouting.

Mustard Greens Container Garden

A mustard plant volunteer and some seedlings

The mustard greens I planted a few weeks ago are coming up. The big one is a volunteer from last year. I don’t know what the long skinny thing is yet – onion or garlic maybe? I scatter seeds close together, then thin the plants repeatedly. That way, I can have salads before the plants are of a size that most people would consider useful. The first thinning is a bit time consuming. The bigger the plants get, the quicker it goes.

Peas and radishes do well in a planter by the creek.

I planted some radishes and peas in a big pot down by the creek. The soil stays nice and moist there and they did very well last year with barely any watering by me. I also decided to try some spinach, chives, and spearmint in the moist soil along the creek bank. So, we’ll see how that goes. If it works, I may just plant an entire creek side garden.

When living without refrigeration, and before any veggies are big enough to eat, I rely on sprouts. I am sprouting lentils, mung beans, sunflower seeds, and something new, quinoa. I also tried flax seed. That didn’t work. After the required overnight soaking, the water was like gelatin and it wouldn’t pour through the screen. I poured the seeds  into a garden bed outside and they came up within a few days. I guess the technique for these is the same as sunflower sprouts (article coming as soon as they pop up). This is my first experience with flax. Backwoods people made fiber from the stalks, (as they also did stinging nettle), according to the Foxfire books.

Mung and quinoa sprout in jars

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