Beginning self sufficient behaivior

Sasha Bushell

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Aug 29, 2016
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Hey Everyone,

I am looking at some ways to become more self sufficient over the summer months.

I just watched Mark's video on his 8 easy to grow summer crops. Does anyone have any other crops they grow successfully over summer (in the south east qld region)?
Also, what do you do with your winter crops to get them to go further? What storage options do you utilise? So far im just pickling but i have some fruit trees and want to store my apples that grow next year in sand or something similar, has anyone had any success with this? Do you have any tips for me?

Or do i just need a bigger fridge?
 
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AndrewB

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Apr 2, 2018
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Okra love the heat & humidity. Mine were going great, even on the 40+ days, until the grasshoppers got stuck into them!

They seem to be perennial too. I left last years in the pots, just intending to use them as stakes for this year, but they are regrowing from the base & fruiting. They grow very easy from seed anyway, but I thought it was a nice bonus.

Jerusalem artichokes are another good grower in the heat. You eat the root, which looks like ginger. Can't wait to try mine, they are all over the garden at the moment. The above ground section looks like a sunflower, which the bees love.

On your preserving question, I've seen citrus in sand for about 6 months.

These guys tried preserving in ash & it didn't work. They are a super sweet couple though, well worth checking out.

I think canning would give you the longest shelf life for fruit. Supermarkets store them in giant fridges, which works, but isn't really self sufficient :)

You could try dehydration as well for something different.
 
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Sasha Bushell

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Aug 29, 2016
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Gold coast
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Sub-Tropical
Thanks so much for the info. Its really hard to find area specific information and alot of the USA stuff, well.. its not really helpful for us being sub tropic.

Where abouts are you located? Whats your property situation and how much do you grow?
 

AndrewB

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Yeah, I wish the Americans would talk in season rather than months, would make things translate a lot better to the rest of the world.

I'm in Perth at the moment, but have lived all over this dusty island. I'm renting currently, so am limited to growing in pots & temporary garden beds.
https://www.selfsufficientculture.com/threads/my-potted-garden.1392/
 
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OskarDoLittle

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Jan 10, 2016
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Okra love the heat & humidity. Mine were going great, even on the 40+ days, until the grasshoppers got stuck into them!

They seem to be perennial too. I left last years in the pots, just intending to use them as stakes for this year, but they are regrowing from the base & fruiting. They grow very easy from seed anyway, but I thought it was a nice bonus.

Jerusalem artichokes are another good grower in the heat. You eat the root, which looks like ginger. Can't wait to try mine, they are all over the garden at the moment. The above ground section looks like a sunflower, which the bees love.

On your preserving question, I've seen citrus in sand for about 6 months.

These guys tried preserving in ash & it didn't work. They are a super sweet couple though, well worth checking out.

I think canning would give you the longest shelf life for fruit. Supermarkets store them in giant fridges, which works, but isn't really self sufficient :)

You could try dehydration as well for something different.
Yep Jerusalem Artichokes certainly seem to like the heat - I ended up with a massive crop last year - we ate so many the other half developed “artichoke overload” and doesn’t want to eat anymore!! So I’m pulling out any random ‘chokes I missed last year at the moment...I treat them like “nutty flavoured” potatoes - so they make a great pan-fried alternative to roast spuds (pan fry pieces about 2cm cubed) with some olive oil, rosemary and garlic. They only take about 15mins to pan fry. Quite yummy. I’ve read they make some people VERY gassy...and this was what Rob complained about - though he liked the taste. You can allegedly minimise this by peeling them, but that’s actually quite time consuming - so I left mine in their “jacket”. (Andrew if you’ve got another half...bear the gas in mind. If not, maybe don’t serve JAs on a dinner date!)
 
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AndrewB

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Seeing as they look a lot like ginger, I wonder if you you could peel them the same way, using a spoon. I'll have to give it a go when I harvest.

On the topic of good summer growers, I have Chinese cabbage doing really well. I put some seeds in a 1000x1200 bed & only one came up (I had a bit too much mulch in there, so I think the others just got lost). The one that did grow has taken up the entire bed though, it's massive! I'm rethinking my whole approach to gardening because of it..

It is in full sun for most of the day & is covered in a mosquito net to keep the damn bugs out. It goes a bit droopy during the hot days, but bounces back the next morning.
 

OskarDoLittle

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You have a chinese cabbage taking up a 1000x1200 bed??? Eeeek it’s a monster!?! (Hope you like cabbage!) If WA is like Qld then brassica’s will be a nightmare for cabbage moth - I’ve given up on them as I never get to harvest any of them before the critters do.
I think you should be able to do the spoon thing with the artichoke if you do it when they’re freshly dug - they’re just way more bumpy and fiddly than ginger (and you need to do quite a few to get a side dish). I’d try scrubbing them with a clean brush (this will get quite a bit of skin off anyway) and see if you’re one of the unlucky “gassy” folks. (Some people get it even sans the peel anyway). They really are quite nice and a pretty plentiful crop. And they’re pretty in the garden even if you don’t end up eating them. (My mother-in-law just has them for their flowers.)
 
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