Some Harsh Reality About Your Survival Garden

Dear Fellow Survivalist;

survival-gardenGreetings. Well, it’s February and springtime is somewhere around the corner. Some of you are probably thinking about starting some seedlings, in preparation for this year’s gardening. If you’re just thinking about it, I’ve got to say I already have you beat, as I’ve got mine germinating. But then, it might just be colder where you are, than it is where I am.

I want to ask you a question about your garden. You can answer in the comments. But mainly I want you to answer yourself. Okay? Here it is. How long can you live off the food you grow in your garden?

From what I’m seeing, few of us could live for more than a week or two off of what we’re growing in our survival garden; yet we insist on calling it a survival garden. It seems that there’s a disconnect somewhere… say, right between our thinking and our reality.

You’ve probably seen some of those ads like I have; the ones which talk about growing enough to feed our family in a four foot square garden. Well, that’s not going to work. I’ve got a whole lot bigger garden than that and it won’t feed us, not really feed us. About all it can do is supplement what we get from the grocery store, and I’ve got a dozen fruit trees to boot.

It is possible to grow enough food for your family to live off of; but you’re not going to accomplish that with a 10 foot by 20 foot garden. If you’re going to have a true survival garden, then you’re going to have to turn your whole backyard into a vegetable garden. That’s a whole lot more than just growing a couple of planters full of veggies.

Now, I’m not saying that you need to do that right now. To be honest with you, growing that much is going to take you a lot of time. So, you may not want to invest that much time in it right now. But what about when a crisis hits? You’ll probably want to expand your garden exponentially then.

The real point here is to ask yourself how ready you are to expand your garden enough that you can grow the food your family is going to need. How much room do you have? Do you have a roto-tiller? Do you have enough seed to plant that big a garden? Do you have fertilizer or compost that you can use to prepare your garden beds? Do you even know where you can get enough water to water that much of a garden? How are you going to haul all that water?

Your survival plans need to be realistic. That means that you need to be ready to do whatever it takes to make sure that you can survive. In the case of your gardening efforts, that has to mean having a garden big enough to produce the food you need. But if you aren’t thinking realistically about what you need, then you aren’t going to be ready. So you really need to look at your gardening requirements from that viewpoint and make sure that you have enough invested in your garden to keep your family going

If you consider that the average adult eats about a ton of food per year, then you need that many tons of food out of your garden. That’s a lot of food. But in a crisis, that may be the only food you have available. The supermarket will be closed and you may not be able to get all that much hunting. So, it’s important to make sure that you have the capability of expanding your garden to meet that need.

This is also a really good reason to have greenhouses for your garden. Greenhouses extend your growing season, which means that they make it possible for you to harvest more out of your garden. Every little bit helps, so the ability to cover your garden with greenhouses is important. If you haven’t prepared for that, then you need to look at stockpiling the necessary materials to build your greenhouses too.

You might also want to consider growing some fruit indoors. There are a number of different fruits that will grow very well indoors; dwarf versions of fruit trees or fruits that grow on bushes and vines, rather than trees. Every little bit helps and fresh fruit is a great thing to add to your diet.

So this year, why not look at your gardening a little different. Even if it’s nothing more than a pencil and paper exercise, why not plan for a garden that will grow enough to really feed you. Figure out how many plants you need and how much space that’s going to take. Then compare that to what you’re actually doing. If there’s a difference (and there probably will be), start working on plans for what you’re going to need to do, when things turn real and you need that garden.

Until then, keep your powder dry and your survival gear close at hand.

Dr. Rich

PS: Here’s a trick for making a survival garden in ANY climate and situation.


  1. Gwen Biedler

    February 17, 2016 at 7:57 pm

    Like most people, our garden won’t sustain us for very long and that is why I like supplementing with wild greens. We live in the country and so foraging is very easy to do. Also, we are storing up seeds that can be sprouted and eaten as our greens. After all, one does not HAVE to eat lettuce and spinach during those difficult times, right? My concern for the garden is this, once hard times hit, we could wake up one morning to find it completely stripped–completely GONE! Then what? THAT is why our seeds must carry us. Sprouts with their tiny leaves will ensure our health and survival! But until that happens, we will continue to garden.

  2. Ken

    February 20, 2016 at 5:47 am

    O.K. Let’s try this agian.
    I have a 3,000 sf garden and I raise most of the fruits and vegetables we eat. I am currently experimenting with new ways to save seed. I do not have a greenhouse yet or even hotbeds, but I have to take things as as fast as I can. One thing that all those who want to survive the coming disaster should read Economics in one lesson by Henry Hazlitt, The Road to Serfdom by Franz Hayek, as well as other works by these economists and also Ludwig von Mises. What most people do not realize is that when the economy fails, it will take at least 200 years to make up a new economy, because the collapse will also cause social and political collapse. The reason for this is that there are three requirements for a healthy civilization – a strong economic base (gold), a vibrant middle class and and active research in science technology. This has been proved in history time and time again. One thing we need to do now is to take back the control of our society from the big money. They are the principal destroyers of civilization. I we neglect to do this, we are condemning our society to perdition.

  3. Mark

    February 20, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Dr. Rich, I have been organic growing for many years and have written a book titled, “Growing Your Own Groceries”. It is entirely possible for a family of 4 to grow enough vegetables on less than 500 square feet. However, that changes when one wants to preserve some produce to get through the colder months, but then again a greenhouse and growing indoors can take up the slack. There are very tricks that can be employed, because some crops do not have to be replanted, such as leaf lettuces and spinach. Let us not forget about vertical growing for any vine growing plants. And probably the most important of all things is to be aware of “soil nutrition”, for which I have some knowledge that is not known even to most organic growers, because the research is about 10 years old and I have just personally discovered 5 years ago. Hint: there is a such a thing as “cold fusion” or another term used is “transmutation”.

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