How self sufficient are you?

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by sumi, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. sumi

    sumi Égalité Staff Member

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    I noticed on the different threads many members mention vegetable gardens, keeping chickens for egg and meat. I was wondering how self sufficient you all are.
    O.K. I know not everyone here has a nice piece of land to farm, but which of you grow your own veg, have fruit trees, make jams, raise your own meat etc? It goes without saying that most of you here have hens for eggs!
    We live on a farm and I have quite a lot of chickens, though I don't eat them, only the eggs, and I sell quite a lot of eggs too. I grow lots of vegetables and always freeze some for "out of season". Sometimes I sell vegetables too, but they're mostly for us. I raise pigs for meat; we actually slaughtered one today and we have lots of fruit trees on the farm, so I dry apricots in summer and make jars and jars of jam. I made chutney once, but DH went and bought a bottle from the shop the next day:p
    I would like to try and live on only our own produce for, say a week, over summer. Just eat meat, eggs and vegetables produced here on the farm and see how it goes!
     
  2. StupidBird

    StupidBird Chillin' With My Peeps

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    It's not Self-sufficient, it's Self Defense!
    - food allergies
    - chemical sensitivities
    - crappy grocery store produce
    - ever higher food bill
    - major hassle to get to the store
    - food snob family

    Oh, yeah, it is way cool to know if TSHTF on a temporary basis (ice storm, hurricane, flooding, blackout, joblessness) we're a little ok.
    I've almost given up on going back to a paycheck (Hey, I still work my butt off, when I am not flattened)

    One acre - in past years (this year the garden failed - 90 days over 90F so far) I've made jams and jellies, canned all sorts, frozen all sorts, kept greens going all winter. Planted fruit trees, asparagus, strawberries, rhubarb, figs, horseradish last fall. Have blueberries, parsley, blackberries, elderberries, sunchokes.

    I shop bulk, to save grocery and gas money, and time going across town to specialty stores.
     
  3. I have WHAT in my yard?

    I have WHAT in my yard? Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 24, 2008
    Eggberg, PA
    Total self sufficiency is not really possible. But go on over to the sufficient self site and see what people are up to.
     
  4. WooingWyandotte

    WooingWyandotte Overrun With Chickens

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    I have WHAT in my yard? :

    Total self sufficiency is not really possible. But go on over to the sufficient self site and see what people are up to.

    Actually, it is possible. But, unless you paid 20k for solar panels, set up your own well/water system, and various other things it's hard to do. I know some people that are off the chart, they are TOTALLLY self-sufficient, they don't have any gas/electric/water bills they have animals everywhere and not to mention a lot of chickens.​
     
  5. Frost Homestead

    Frost Homestead eggmonger

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    I like to think I'm pretty self-sufficient. We have a big garden, and thanks to the weather here it's growing and producing nearly year round. Like you, we don't eat our chickens, we just eat their eggs. My chickens are pets, so I couldn't imagine eating them. We've got about 500 gal of water collection (one 350 gal and 5x 50 gal) tanks that we would be filling with rainwater to use in the garden, etc. if it would ever actually rain. But we've got a gas powered pump that we can use to get water from a local spring if we ever REALLY need water that bad, and the artesian springs around here flow even during the worst drought (like the one were experiencing right now). How long could we survive on just our garden and chickens? Since there's no real way to tell without actually trying it my husband and I have been reading a great book called "The Forager's Harvest" it's a great guidebook to learning to recognize and prepare wild foods.

    Besides that we're homesteading, so we are pretty used to living with things like limited running water in the house, showering with no hot water, and cooking with just a propane camp stove. It's really taught me a lot about what you really need and how to cut down on the things you don't. But hey I'm just 30 years old and already living without rent or a mortgage so I can't complain! Someday soon we'll have hot running water, what a day that will be [​IMG] LOL! Of course we do all the normal stuff like can our own spaghetti sauces and salsas. I make the best habanero jelly!
     
  6. KenK

    KenK Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 23, 2011
    Georgia
    Quote:Actually, it is possible. But, unless you paid 20k for solar panels, set up your own well/water system, and various other things it's hard to do. I know some people that are off the chart, they are TOTALLLY self-sufficient, they don't have any gas/electric/water bills they have animals everywhere and not to mention a lot of chickens.

    So what happens when you need a part for that fancy solar power setup? You are back to not being self sufficient. Buying the thing in the first place was not self sufficient.
     
  7. Egghead_Jr

    Egghead_Jr Overrun With Chickens

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    I'm so self sufficient I can get out of bed, eat breakfast and even brush my own teeth all by myself!

    Oh, have a garden, compost pile and chickens too. Not to mention do my own car and house repairs.
     
  8. SarahFair

    SarahFair Chillin' With My Peeps

    Sep 23, 2008
    Monroe, Ga
    Not very.
     
  9. WooingWyandotte

    WooingWyandotte Overrun With Chickens

    8,965
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    Apr 25, 2011
    Nor cal
    Quote:Actually, it is possible. But, unless you paid 20k for solar panels, set up your own well/water system, and various other things it's hard to do. I know some people that are off the chart, they are TOTALLLY self-sufficient, they don't have any gas/electric/water bills they have animals everywhere and not to mention a lot of chickens.

    So what happens when you need a part for that fancy solar power setup? You are back to not being self sufficient. Buying the thing in the first place was not self sufficient.

    I take that back, you probably wouldn't have a solar system. But you don't have to be bratty about it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  10. KenK

    KenK Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 23, 2011
    Georgia
    Nope, I looked into the solar panels but by my computations it appeared that it would take 396 years, plus or minus a month, to break even so I gave it a pass.
     

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