Prep Genrl Weekly Prep Thread: May 25 ~ 30, 2020

ReneeT

Veteran Member
Good Morning, All! I hope you are all doing well out there on this beautiful Sunday. It's such a pretty day outside; Mama wren is singing her good morning song from the trellis on the porch, and - so far! - it's not raining!! I'm just waiting for Hubby to get out of the shower so that I can toss sheets in the washer; they should dry quickly enough on the lines today that I can put them back on the bed in time for my before work nap! I do need to ask Hubby to tighten up the turnbuckles as hanging the towels to dry yesterday had the new lines drooping some yesterday. We also need to replace one line as the coating on it is cracked and I'm afraid it will catch and tear anything that might get blown on to it by the breeze.

Here in a bit, we are going to cut and nail together a tiered raised bed for the strawberries that have been languishing in their box for the past few weeks. Yup - I finally gave up on planting them in the ground; the rain has not let up enough for nearly a month to allow me to do the finish tilling on any of the gardens. I thought I had ordered 100 strawberry plants, but there were only 50 in the box, so the raised bed can be smaller than I had been planning - no complaints on that one!! We will make one 12'x 8' bed from treated 2x8's, set and level it; then make another bed 8' x 4' to set inside it - I have some paving blocks that we'll use to raise the level of the second bed. A couple of trips to the sale barn for composted manure next week, and it will be ready to plant. I picked up a bag of onion bulbs to plant around the strawberries to help fend off the blasted rabbits, but we will also use the chicken wire I bought to make covers for over the garden rows to help with that as well. I'm also going to plant some salad greens here and there in the beds; they'll be cut and used before the berries spread to fill the area.

Late afternoon, we plan to run in to town to the cemetery where my parents, aunt and uncle are buried. We'll place flags on my Father and Uncle's graves; plant a pair of peonies and place some flowers on my parent's graves, and place flowers on my Aunt and Uncle's. I don't want to plant them until closer to dark so they have a chance to recuperate overnight from being planted! After we get done with that, Hubby needs to run over to his Mama's and clean out her gutters and knock apart and haul off a flower bed; while I go home and get ready to go in to work.

I only have to work one night and Hubby is off tomorrow to haul me around so I'm only going to take a short nap - if any - today. Daughter and grandsons will be back home on Tuesday :spns: so I am going to stop after I get off work Monday morning and pick up a bag of dog food, hit Aldi for some fresh food; then will have Hubby drive me over to her house later on so that I can clean out the fridge and do a few other things; maybe fix up a cassarole that she can just reheat for supper when they get home. I plan to pick the boys up Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning, depending on when they get home; and then keep them until Thursday noon so daughter can get everything ready to re-open her shop next week!

Groceries and household goods are starting to reappear in the stores but are still low in stock on some items - probably due to people buying in fear of another shortage :rolleyes: Dollar General has had reasonable stocks of canned and mylar vacuum sealed packs of meat/tuna all along, but we can our own meat and I was well stocked on tuna already so have not needed to purchase any. I have been able to pick up small bottles of Lysol concentrate at Dollar Tree; and they, and Dollar General have ammonia back in stock, so should be set for spring cleaning - as soon as my helper gets back from her trip, that is!

Well, Hubby is done with his breakfast, and I'm not getting anything done sitting here on the computer so I'd best get to work. You folks all take care out there; and stay safe!
 

hiwall

Veteran Member
Walked around our property yesterday with a mattock to get rid of all the thistles that had started growing. It was a job. I also used it to dig out any ant hills I found. I had a bad headache and the exercise worked to relieve some of the pain.
I also dug up a wild Colorado Four o'clock plant and relocated it near the house. My wife likes the bright purple flowers they get on them(they are night bloomers). The roots are supposed to be a good topical painkiller too.
 

prudentwatcher

Veteran Member
I put up another one gallon mylar bag of rice. I tried a no knead bread recipe, which turned out fantastic! My order of disposable masks came in and I ordered another box as a backup. I also ordered a few more cloth masks. I think we are now overprepared in that department, but I'm not complaining.

Two short shopping trips today added coffee, dish soap, paper plates, soups, shelf stable orange juice and a few more snacks to the prep stash. Everything on sale.

My side job netted me a nice amount of extra money last week. Most of it is headed to savings.

Will see what other opportunities pop up during the week.
 

SouthernBreeze

Veteran Member
A close friend of ours gave Cary an oak tree to bring down to be used as firewood. Spent all morning, yesterday over at his house dealing with that. Got it all back home. Now, for the splitting and stacking part. Friend still has 4 more oak trees that he wants cut down. By the time all of this is said and done, we will be set on firewood for a few years.

Tomato plants are beginning to bloom, Yay! Everything else in my gardens are doing well. Finally, some heat and drier weather. Humidity is on the rise, though. The rains we're getting now are beneficial to the gardens about once a week. Not constant rain like we've been getting all winter and spring.
 

Digger

Senior Member
I looked through my bee hives. My swarm I caught is growing but not ready for a honey super yet. One hive I bought is going like gang busters and I added a 2nd super to it. The 3rd hive is average. They have a honey super, but they are not building neat comb. Lots of burr comb and crazy comb on the frames. I am not sure what is up with them. They are raising brood, so we will see how it goes.

We got both hay mowers repaired and need to cut hay. But we have rain in the forecast all week. We also did some dirt work at the barn so hopefully the water is diverted around the barn now. The previous owner built it where the water ran in both barns. His hay would set in water. We put ours on pallets on the high corner to keep it dry. We added gravel inside and outside the barn in addition to contouring the ground. This rainy week should tell us if our work has corrected the problem.

Garden is looking good. Everything is up but watermelons. I am late planting them. Hopefully that will get done today. Cherries are ripening. I hung sheets of foil in the tree to keep the birds away. I hope it works. I put netting around my blueberries. The birds can really eat a lot.

I moved the last of the chickens from the brooder to the grow out pen. That pen is a bit crowded now, but they should be ok if I free range some. I need to start thinning out the older birds from the layer house. It is a job I dread, but we love dumplings and I usually can some chicken in broth. You have to slow cook or pressure cook those old birds so you can chew them. But the flavor is the best!
 
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prudentwatcher

Veteran Member
I went to Walmart for the first time since mid-March. About what has been reported as far as what is missing, so I wasn't really surprised. I got some more Zest, some eyeglass cleaner wipes, some generic tylenol and aleve, a pair of steel toed boots, a pair of slippers (the last two are for storage), some pectin, some foil, and some rice for the mylar bags, and some canned goods. Really wanted to get the boots and the slippers as I was getting worried that people were reporting that they were getting hard to find. I have several pair of brand new sneakers and a couple of pair of other shoes that are also still in boxes, but nothing like this. Marked some more stuff off my list and breathed a little easier.

PS-Got some generic tp as well. Not paying exorbitant prices for Angel Soft, the only other brand they had, especially since I don't like it very much. Already have about 2 years of my preferred brand, so this is backup/trade goods.
 

paxsim2

Contributing Member
I've been slowly restocking the pantry, between Walmart pickup and Homeland Instacart I've been able to find everything that I need. I want to be fully stocked with food, hba and seeds before fall. I need ziplock bags and more food saver rolls. I went to our small produce market last week for strawberries, first store I've stepped foot in since this began. Getting ready to harvest my swiss chard for the freezer and my onions are bending over so I'll have those to put up. I'll have to go in to get any more meat.

My husband applied for his social security, it will come in August, that will go to paying down what debt we have. He's at full retirement age so this will help, he's not retiring for at least another year.
 

WanderLore

Contributing Member
I am having a bout of severe sciatica so I am seeing my chiropractor a lot I'm on 3rd or 4th week but it is getting much better and my doctor is taking care of my daughter to. I made a short trip into Family Dollar with my cane there were a cashier's standing there nobody helped me with the door with a buggy or anything. They have no toilet paper but I'm pretty well stocked with that. The gardens are planted the grass can't be mowed because it's too wet might let the horse out to do it I'm just very limited right now but I am trying to get it all done.
 

WanderLore

Contributing Member
I have been seen my chiropractor for over 14 years he has always fix me up when I would go to the doctor to take care of this they didn't do anything but push pills that didn't take care of the real problem. So I think that chiropractic skills and shtf would be invaluable
 

WanderLore

Contributing Member
I am seeing holes in the prep's so I've got a list going hopefully can get that taken care of next week. One grandson been spending a lot of time out with us he's such a sweetheart he'll be back next week I think but boy can he eat he's 12!
 

hiwall

Veteran Member
It didn't freeze here last night! Only got down to 37*
The 7-day forecast for here is warm. I think we will plant our garden over the next couple days. Our potatoes that had froze are re-sprouting. Apple trees that froze look very bad. I do not think they will die but I do expect they will be slow to re-leaf. Raspberries and blueberry bushes look bad and I expect no harvest this year and I hope they don't just die out. Guess I'll just up our LTS food storage more as it becomes available.
 

Illini Warrior

Veteran Member
It didn't freeze here last night! Only got down to 37*
The 7-day forecast for here is warm. I think we will plant our garden over the next couple days. Our potatoes that had froze are re-sprouting. Apple trees that froze look very bad. I do not think they will die but I do expect they will be slow to re-leaf. Raspberries and blueberry bushes look bad and I expect no harvest this year and I hope they don't just die out. Guess I'll just up our LTS food storage more as it becomes available.
local grocery got blueberries in from CA - on sale and probably cheaper than the local grown will be when available ...

saw U-pick asparagus on FB - kind of unusual - don't ever remember seeing anyone letting people into their patches >> cheap enough $1/lb - $2 if they pick it
 

prudentwatcher

Veteran Member
Been on a kick of watching you-tube videos on preparedness/survivalism/gardening, etc. Picked up a few interesting tips, but nothing too earth shaking.

Aldi's had cherries and watermelon on sale, so off I went. Came back $63 poorer. Didn't intend to spend quite that much, but they were pretty well stocked and I just kept tossing things into the cart--canned corn, canned peaches, flour, cheesecake mix, muffin mix, crackers, cookies, cheese, boneless pork ribs, foil, boxed potatoes, hamburger helper. Some more things have been marked off my list, so just a few things left, mainly non-food items. I will continue to stock food when I find good deals as we are eating almost all of our meals at home nowdays, so we are rotating through stuff faster than ever before. I haven't cooked so much in ages!
 

paxsim2

Contributing Member
After reading the threads on what the fall will bring and what could be in short supply I placed an amazon order. I compared prices and they were about the same or cheaper on what I ordered. Underwear, white tshirts, Claritin, Pepcid and a few other things brought the total up to 150.00. But we'll have them for later. Next on the agenda is weeding out clothes we don't need and things that need to be cut up for the rag bag. I was reading some tightwad tips about making rag rugs from old, stained white tshirts and either dying them before you make the rugs or after. I think I have enough to make a good sized one.

Need to fill in the blanks in the garden with beans, I put them in the pots with everything. Need to repot the sweetgrass and have some comfrey to plant with more to divide.
 

SouthernBreeze

Veteran Member
I got another garden tub for my deck, filled it with garden soil, and planted a squash plant in it today. The garden tub that is growing a tomato plant in it is doing so well, I thought I would try it with squash. If these two plants do better than the ones in the raised beds out in the full sun, I'm gonna do more container gardening on my deck next year. I'd really like growing bell peppers this way, too. It would definitely make it easier on me.
 

Walrus

Contributing Member
First ever post on TB2K after long lurkage and long procrastination about registering! But it's for a good cause and all...

Anyways, it's been so wet in the Ozarks - and I'll never pass the opportunity to be thankful for rain even when there's been too much - that the bride (of 45 years) and I are still working to get the garden completely put in. Just finished setting out watermelon, cantaloupe, onions and cucumbers. Have some cabbage and asparagus in but behind on sweet taters. We're getting sweet peas, radishes, lettuce, spinach and strawberries daily so that's nice. Beans, peppers and tomatoes are in and growing well - lots of blooms on the maters and this next week of forecasted sun should really accelerate all that. Need to put in succession plantings of beans now, after putting up the cages for the pole beans to live in.

Sunchokes (Jerusalem artichokes), beets, carrots and taters growing like crazy.

Been reorganizing preps during rainy days - way behind on mylaring up some bags of rice, different types of beans, corn meal, powdered milk, etc. Good projects for hot days.

Will butcher a bunch of rabbits when garden is caught up and then can the meat - we usually cook the meat off the bones and can the broth with the meat for stews, etc. Set up for outside cooking and canning to keep the heat down in the house. Then it'll be time to do some deep cleaning of the rabbit cages and their area - been hauling lots of rabbit manure and hay to the composting area where the garden enlargement will be.

And it'll be time for haying before all that is accomplished, probably.

Whew.
 

hiwall

Veteran Member
local grocery got blueberries in from CA - on sale and probably cheaper than the local grown will be when available ...

saw U-pick asparagus on FB - kind of unusual - don't ever remember seeing anyone letting people into their patches >> cheap enough $1/lb - $2 if they pick it
There is plenty of stuff for sale here but the objective is to grow our own.
I think our apple trees will likely never amount to much. I have heard from locals that no one around here has any luck with blueberries. Raspberries are popular around here and I will likely plant a lot more in different areas of our property to try and get several groups going (might sneak up and plant some on the in the trees on the edge of the national forest abutting our property).
 

nomifyle

Veteran Member
I posed a question last night on the main and then found the answer so I deleted it, as no one replied. I had forgotten what to do when putting food in a mylar bag that is in a bag. So I did a web search and it said to cut a small slit in the corner of the internal bag. I thought that should be done but I was drawing a blank. When I thought that my son + 4 might come to our house I bought extra stuff to include 12 boxes of pancake mix. The bags in each box fit perfectly in a one quart mylar. I've had them bagged up for awhile taking up space on my sofa. DH has been very patient about it but he is starting to get frusterated, so its time to get the 02s in them and into a tote and stored in the bottom of my pantry.

There are so many goods that need to be properly packaged that I got so overwhelmed about. I did get another 5 gallon bucket of great northern beans in the mylar in the bucket, now to get 02s in it and sealing it to go in my she shed. The she shed does have an ac in it but its 14x20 so the ac just keeps the bad heat out, also some dehmidifying.

I have some nice rubber maid totes that are not new and there are some cracks here and there because they were stored in a hot shed for five years with just stuff in them. So I want to reuse them. DH has some of that super seal stuff that he painted the cracks that were on the bottom And I have some water proof gorilla tape that I will tape over the seal stuff. The totes of mylar bags filled with food will go in the semi climate controlled she shed.

I'm kinda on a roll getting things containered up, prayerfully it will continue and I can get stuff out of the way. Its all over the place and in the way.

DH wants to take the contents of some past expiration date food and dehydrate it. He loves to put things in the dehydrator.

Judy
 

Walrus

Contributing Member
I've done the same thing with packages of Ramen noodles (just make a slit in the package before sealing them up). So far it seems to have worked real well, although I have to admit I wouldn't probably discern the difference in taste between fresh and not, far as noodles go. Anyway, I'll give credit to Ol' Remus for that tip; I'm pretty sure I picked it up a few years back while reading his woodpile report.
 

nomifyle

Veteran Member
At an auction last year we bought several cases of shakley snack bars. I've been putting them up in mylar but have not added 02 yet so it looks like I will have to put a tiny slit in each package. Several months ago I vacuum sealed some in jars and the packages are all swollen up so I'll need to open them up, check them out and do due dilligence with them. Thanks for the comment.

Judy
 

ReneeT

Veteran Member
I'm just about done with the weather hereabouts :gaah:

Got off work yesterday, hit a grocery store and gas station on the way home, tossed the perishables in the fridge, and rinsed off the hospital germs - I had to work the door in the ER, checking people for Covid-19 symptoms before sending them on to registration and triage. I'd skipped lunch so I ate a bowl of cereal - Carb Crash!! Couldn't keep my eyes open so I plopped down on the couch and was out for an hour or so. Got up, saw the garden had dried up enough to work in so sucked down some homemade Gatorade, found my gloves, dragged out the old Troy-Bilt and went over the garden one more time. Hitched the little trailer to the Cub Cadet and started gathering up the cat litter jugs I've been using to haul water until I noticed that most of them were brittle and pretty much toast. I knew I'd need some to water the garden row plants with, so I stuffed the useless ones in a big recycling bag, then stopped by the computer to put out a plea for empty litter jugs on the local Facebook page - I just ain't got what it takes to tote around 5 gallon buckets of water any more; those litter jugs hold two gallons and are easier to pour water out of besides.

With just two of the jugs being worthwhile, I decided I'd better go ahead and haul the house hose around to the garden end of the porch - 75' worth - and flopped it over the rail. Went out to the shed and found 2 more hoses, drug them out to the garden side of the yard and hooked 'em up. Drug out 20+ little step in electric fence posts, found the bucket that holds a roll of baler twine, stuck 3 bundles of survey flags, 2 measuring tapes, a razor blade knife (a buck at Harbor Freight and aren't those just the handiest little things!!), and put it all in the old Mule. Out the garden and got it all squared up. Back to the house for some ice water. Back to the garden and started figuring up what was gonna go where. Back up to the house to count tomato plants. Inside the house to find a pad of paper and some more Gatorade (it was hot out there; yes, it was!) Sat down in the rocker on the porch to do some figuring - woke up about 40 minutes later... Got the plan figured out, went out to the garden and started laying out the rows using the electric fence posts as row markers. Stood and stared at the marked rows, then went back up to the porch table and figured out a different plan...

Back out to the garden to re-measure and stake out rows. Started measuring and marking where the t-posts will go for the pole bean fences. Re-marked them when I figured out I forgot to leave room for the marigolds. On to the tomatoes - decided to off-set the plants so had to re-flag where they would go a couple of times. Did I mention I was tired and getting a little goofy by then? Four rows left; okay, 2 of 'em will be zinnias so those were easy - back to the porch to see what else I had that I needed to plant out there. Out to the shed for more survey flags. Tried to figure out where I'd put the garden plan - checked the porch, the house, the shed. Finally found when I remembered I'd folded it in half and stuck it in the waistband of my shorts. Had to peel it off my skin and - looka there; I got me a homemade tattoo, by golly!!

Then I started dragging T-posts out of the back of the shed and loading them on to the Mule - and I'm not sure who put them about as far away from the door as they could get, and then leaned an old lawn sweeper in front of them.... A scraped shin and a little bit of inventive language later I had the sweeper moved and was toting the posts out. Once I got them outside, I also managed to find a couple of brain cells that were still sparking and loaded my two 4'x6' cucumber trellises on the bed first. Then it was 6 - 8 foot T-posts for the pole bean trellises (I'm getting too danged old to stand on my head to pick bush beans!) plus 4 more of them for the cucumber trellises. And then a dozen 6 footers for the 'maters. I found a piece of 2x4 I could wedge in the bed between the posts and cucumber trellises, so hooked one square of the pole bean trellises (re-wire, 6' squares) over it and hauled everything out to the garden. Hubby got home just about then so I took a break while he ate, then he found the post driver and went out to the garden and got them set in as I placed them by the flags. I managed to get everything loaded back up - including 4 fence posts that I hadn't wanted to pull and had to go re-measure and replace - and bless Hubby's heart, he put the Mules and tools back in the shed for me.

I was going to go ahead and start planting but Hubby suggested that since I was bumping in to doorways and about to face plant I should maybe look at the weather first. 10% chance of rain overnight. I took the chance and headed for bath and bed. Woke up about 2130 to thunder, lightning... and rain.

Rain gauge said half an inch but it looked pretty muddy out there this morning, so I decided to go over to town and drop off my debit card with daughter so she could order take out Chinese for her birthday dinner tonight. Figured that since I was gonna be over that direction, I might as well hook up the trailer and stop by the sale barn for a load of composted manure. I needed a few more treated 2x8's so I pulled in to the lumber yard - way off to the side - and went in to pay for my order. They wanted me to pull through the lumber building. I tried to convince 'em just to lean them up outside the building and I'd haul 'em to the van but they wouldn't listen.... Bet they do next time. 'Course, next time I want to pick up a trailer load of composted manure, I oughta maybe pick it up on the way OUT of town instead of the way In....

And now it's starting to drizzle rain again...
 

Marseydoats

Contributing Member
Renee, you made me tired just reading that!
I still use 5 gallon buckets, I just fill them half full of water, and snap a lid on them. Otherwise about half winds up in my boots...
 

ginnie6

Senior Member
I did the weekly shopping yesterday in a rush due to protests coming. This was mainly a stockup run. More canned goods, flour, sugar, and such. Surprisingly everything was well stocked, not pre-rona levels but there was at least a few of everything. Then I came home got that stuff put up and picked squash and zucchini (I need to pick again today too). Gotta help dd get her car in the shop today then home to take care of squash and zuke. We planted more corn and okra last last night and dh got the spot for my purple hulls ready, I was going to plant them this morning but have to help dd. Maybe as soon as I get back I can still get out there. I also need to clear out the bed the sugar peas were in as I think they are done. Going to plant bush beans there as I don't think I have room anywhere else. One thing I did notice yesterday was the increase in the price of ground beef! The package that used to cost me anywhere from $11-13 is now $18! :eek: needless to say I didn't get it. At those prices someone here is going to have to hunt if they want meat!
 

paxsim2

Contributing Member
Started harvesting swiss chard for the freezer got one bag blanched and frozen, need to do about 5 more. Not much but everything helps. The onions are getting big finally and everything else is going good. I'll be planting my watermelons this evening when it's cooler.

Did a small pickup yesterday at Walmart. Then my Amazon orders are trickling in, the last should arrive Monday. We are hoping to buy another small air conditioner, that will give us two this one will be for the upstairs bedroom. We are looking at buying a small solar system for our screen room, it's not attached to the house and we're wanting to try to get electric to it for some lights.
 

nomifyle

Veteran Member
When I went to Walmart last week there were no 5 gallon buckets. Thankfully I still have a few that are empty.

Our screened room/porch is attached to the house but has no entrance to the house. Instead of putting my gas stove in the kitchen we are going to put it on the porch against the inside wall. I wanted it in the kitchen but it would be a big big job to get it in there. I've wanted and outside summer kitchen.

Judy
 
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