Found  Zero

More About: Agriculture

Oyate's patriot garden report. Portable agriculture.

We do almost  all of our growing in 5 gallon buckets. The idea is that in the high desert, we spend much of our time in tillage and given as me and everybody I know lives in a campground, we don't want to put that much time into tilling soil we can't take with us. So we compost and put it all into 5 gallon buckets so we cant take it with us.
Shebang! We just invented portable agriculture. And we're dong organic portable agriculture with compost and cow shit and we're doing the "compost tea" routine.
OK so we're not really sure yet how much you can grow in a 5-gal bucket but so far, I got this:
1. Tomatoes. 3 kinds.
2. Chives
3. Onions
4. Flowers
5. Cillantro (corriander)
6. Mint
7. Sage
8. Rosemary
9. Habanero
10. Strawberries
11. Watermelon
12. Leaf lettuce
13. Romaine lettuce
14. Potatoes.
15. I am not actually growing radishes but I just like saying the word RRRRRRADSISHES. I have no idea why anybody would want to grow one, much less eat them because I think they taste disgusting.
The potatoes and watermellon we are not so sure about. We don't know what kind of results we will get. They are viney root kinds of crops and ew just don't know what will happen.
I can tell you this is the potatoes are sprouting and looking pretty good. Like if they don't have space and time to totally become aware of their potatoeness, they don't know it yet.
Overall, my experience so far with agricultre impresses me with how muther-trucking EASY it is. Man, dandling hanimals, I mean handling animals is way, way, way more labour intensive than plating things and watching them grow.

The onions seem to just LOVE g gal buckets. The tomatoes? Man they absolutely ADORE life in a 5 gal bucket. Yeah, the maters do just fine.
I'll post some pics when things get really going.

9 Comments in Response to

Comment by Sharon Secor
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The mini-Jerseys, according to my research, produce about a gallon and a half of milk a day, some more. And your comment about solitary animals... exactly why I was considering the mini-Jerseys. I could have a few of them, as opposed to the full sized ones, which would be much more expensive to have. I think those minis are just ultimate cool. Not that I'll be able to have any for a couple years yet... It would be irresponsible until I have constructed a Dane-proof area for them. If I can't guarantee their safety, it would be cruel to have them.

The eventual plan is goats for daily milk (I like goat milk better and they kids also enjoy it) and a few mini cows. And some chickens. I would feel more food secure with milk (and is associated by-products) and eggs. That and a good garden. I'm not confident in our so-called economic recovery. I have to go with what common sense and years of study tell me... Economic Depression.

We've had grand adventures here, making the transition from urban city folk to off grid living and working towards a higher degree of self-sufficiency. Cooked outside on a fire for months. I faced my cook fire so I could see a small mountain range just over the Rio Grand in Mexico. And, sitting there, making tortillas by hand, cooking them on the fire... a spiritual experience, in the contemplation of in that moment I could be anywhere in time... 3,000 years ago, 10,000 years ago or yesterday... time just fell away. It was really beautiful.

I think about the things the kids have learned. My 10 year old can make a full meal by herself from scratch, from starting the fire, to preparing the food to working with the flames and the coals to cook. She is the cornbread queen outside... digs the hole, burns the wood, makes the coals, makes the cornbread from scratch, bakes in a dutch oven. I think of these things in comparison to city kids her age that would be hard pressed to make a full well balanced meal from scratch in a fully equipped kitchen, let alone out in the middle of the desert.

Culinary adventures we've had include rattlesnake rice... (well, we killed it, so...) and prickly pear pads (there's a reason that is classified as a famine food, lots of work... first lesson, field prep them, otherwise you'll be picking thorns out of your feet by the food prep cooking area for a week)... Use the ones smaller than your hand and they are excellent in spaghetti sauce. 

This year she's into learning how to garden and make snares for small animals.  I encourage her in these things because... hey, ya never do know what the future may bring. 

Have a great day...


Comment by Rick Gleitz
Entered on:

No, there's not a single word

which rhymes with lettuce

Though I've tried my best

cause you dared to bet us

So I'll quit an' run home -

just go on and forget us.

Comment by Nick Barnett
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Well, I just moved to AZ... spent the last 5 years in CA and originally from IL. Both of those places have good dirt and spoiled me. I didn't know that, YES you actually do have to fertilize plants.  I built (2) 4x8 garden boxes and filled it with "garden dirt" from home depot. DON"T DO THAT!  The only thing that grew was my corn and a few heads of lettuce. Last week, Powell posted a great article on here. I just wanted to make sure everyone sees it, if they are interested. I'll be following his dirt mixture guidelines this fall.  People have told me I can't grow here in the summer... is that true (I'm in Gilbert). I wish there was a gardening club for noobs like me.

Here is Powel's link:

Comment by Found Zero
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Hiya Sharon!

Wells no, I never heard of a mini-Jersey. Sounds ok to me if you just want to cream your coffee but a smaller cow probably means less milk, right?

Jerseys are favored for the reason that they are small and easy to handle. There's just a couple of junctures with cows. There's a couple of cow-crossings so to speak.

A single milk cow can be great because as soon as you have 3 or 5 cows together, sanitation and hygeine become a real issue, and then you have to start medicating them and nobody in this world truly enjoys shoveling cow shit. But one cow is never that much of a problem.

There's just one thing you have to understand about cows. And just about all the other animals. They are herd animals. They are gregarious by nature and if you isolate them, they get lonely. And they can actually become pathological and then they are way more prone to disease and injury. Heard of a "crazy horse"?

How about a "mad cow"?

How about the "10,000 foot carnivorous chicken"?

OK I made up the 10,000 foot carnivorous chicken but you get the idea. Single farm animals don't fare well as animals in company and if don't get others for them to hang out with, you kind of have to provide that companionship for them yourself.

Overall, what I'm finding is that the farmer gets to sleep at night but an animal husband's job can be 24x7. It just does seem totally unfair that we can't get actual milk from Milk Thistle or Milk Weed.

Why the hell doesn't somebody come up with a plant that makes milk?

Comment by Sharon Secor
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 I, too, live in the desert, yep... the beautiful high plains of the Chihuahuan desert. I thoroughly enjoyed your garden livestock rundown. Container gardening is something I first became aware of in an urban setting, when I used to live in NY. A lot of people do it down here because when seed packets and plant instructions talk about full sun, well they ain't talking about full sun in the desert. It helps to be able to move stuff around a bit.

The thing with turkeys... those farm bred turkeys could be considered a whole different species from wild turkeys. Farm bred... wow, so, so, stupid. When it rains, they feel something hitting them in the head from above, so they look up, mouth moronically agape, and stand there and drown, as the rain pours down their throat and into their lungs. Wild turkeys, however... a whole 'nother breed. Wily, smart...

Have you heard about those miniature Jersy cows? We were looking at the biggest size of the miniatures, as they'd be as tall as my Great Danes, but with a bit more weight, hopefully enhancing their chance of survival, sigh. My bitches are mad territorial and have little tolerance for other animal within their perceived borders.

Goats are on my list for after I can set them up in a Dane proof environment, as are chickens. Strictly milk and eggs though. That's why I want a mini-Jersey. Goat's milk has no cream. I need cream for my coffee.

Thanks for the animal husbundry and garen report, it was thoroughly enjoyable and I'll look forward to the next one.


Comment by Found Zero
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Chickens are easy. Bunnies are easy. Goats are not all that much of a problem and so with sheep. But turkeys? Holy Gods they are a pain in the ass. First of all, if you get more than 3 of them together, they are suspeptible to practically every disease you can think of and they actually do drown themselves if it rains heavy. Because the dopes keep looking UP. They try to drink the water and if there's too much of it, well, there go your turkeys. Sheep know enough to get out of the rain. Ditto for goats. Cows will just get rained on and stand there looking miserable but turkeys will die. Every other aminal in the barnyard will take care of themselves but not turkeys. Because turkeys are plainly and plainateively mother-fucking STUPID ASS BIRDS.

It is really seroiusly hard to raise an animal that has a death-wish like turkeys, they are all suicidal. They are always looking for a way to out-fox you and that's BEFORE the fox shows up. Turkeys can invent 1000 ways to die and that's before tomorrow morning. Turkeys are a serious pain in the ass.

Goats are pretty ok. I only like goats for eating. And I like their sense of humour. I don't like they way they smell because man, they smell even worse than me. But they are not above giving you a head-butt and joking around. They will hit you when you least expect it. I like those guys and they are pretty easy to husband because they don't need much but the opportunity to run you over.

I like sheep pretty much but they don't give much response. Sheep are like these little fuzzy self-propelled lawn mowers. They just like to eat grass. It's so easy to do sheep if you have a lot of grass for them to eat and you just point 'em in the the right direction and next thing you know, they got all the grass cut. Sure saves of gas not to have to mow the lawn, the sheep will take care of that whole problem for you.

But my fave animal of all is the most lowly. Pigs. Pigs are the greatest animal in the whole world in my book because they are smart and they have a sense of humour. Pigs are smart. Really smart.

Man, you guys don't play with our food. Not enough because do you know how playful and interactive animals can be? A pig will play with you, so will a bunny and so will a calf. A cow calf.

Now cows are different and take a lot of work and I don't like holesteins or angus because you are just talking about a big, heavy animal and it just takes too much man dammagement. I mean damn management. And cows have an attidude. Cows are like "make me move" so you gotta get out the prod and start mis-managing them. I really don't like cows much. The only kind I like are what we call "white faces". Jerseys. They are small and manageable and they give great milk. Jersey cows are like the lap-dog of the farmer's kingdom. But even they are high-maintenence animals. They need all kinds of antibiotics and nutrition. Just to keep thier silly asses from dying. Generally, people start out with chickens and then they make a mistake. They go for bunnies thinking that bunnies are quieter than chickens. They aren't. Bunnies, when they get into fresh, man, they SCREAM. Man, a rabbit in distress will sound exactly like a human infant screaming. It will take the hair right off your neck. And when two males get to fighting, creepy jeepers, you never heard such a sound in your life. It will freak the daylights out of you. And bunnies can fight. They can fight like hell. You can go to bed one night with all he bunnies in their hutches and wake up to total carnage. You absolutely, positively have to keep bunnies segregated. They will rip themselves to shreds if you let 'em. You'd think as herbovires that they wouldn't be capable of that much damage right? WRONG. Bunnies, left to themselves are horribly destructive creatures. I think it has to do something with captivity.

Yeah, overall, I like pigs. I'm a pig-man. Pigs mostly want to be left to themselves but there's always a joker in the pack. Pigs are really interactive. In every pack of pigs there is always one joker that will huff and snort at you and whoop it up. I kinda feel bad for the pigs when they go to slaughter because a pig always knows. They got this kind of psychic ability and they can perceive their own demise. They always know the day of the slaughter. And they act all nervous. Which I would too if I knew I was gonna get slaughtered. But we make it pretty easy for our pigs and our chickens and our lambs and our goats and our cows. Because every single kind of animal has a way to get slaghtered and we make it non-trepidatious and easy on them because we love them. And our animals trust us. They say "you aren't gonna kill me are you?" and we say oh, no, no chance, come here for a second, I got a secret to whipser in your ear"...

And then we kill them and eat them. And they taste dang fine and yummy.

Comment by Found Zero
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Yeah so I was gonna tell you about animal husbandry. I'm a "manimal". I'm a beer-drinking whoremonger and what I know best is aminals. Amnimals. Animlateons? Amnifiscences? Whatever.

What I like first is chickens. Chickens are God's gift to the beginner because they mostly take care of themselves and they are some of the most rewarding. Tell you why: most of the animals you raise on the farm mostly act like they don't like you all that much. Cows, goats, sheep, they all pretty much run AWAY from you. Chickens are one of the only barn yard animals that actually run TO you. Because they associate you with food and water. But if you ever wanted to feel like a hero or a rock star, if you feel under-appreaciated, get yourself a load of chickens and they will make you feel just fine. Chickens really put a lot of appreciation into life. And I like all kinds of chickens. There are Rhode Island Reds, there are Perl-Whites, there are Speckled Windots, there are Cornish Game Hens, there's just a bunch of different chickens.

And people think chickens are dirty. They aren't. Chickens raised in industrial conditions are pretty freaking dirty but when you raise them yourself, you know that chickens like to be clean. There is nothing in this world that a chicken loves so much as a good dust-bath. You should see 'em. Give then some good, clean sand or ever better, sawdust. Chickens freaking LOVE sawdust. Just plonk it down in front of them and they start burying their heads in it and shaking it through their feathers and you can just tell they are in chicken heaven. And it makes you feel good. Just watching them. They are having such a great time it's hard not to feel good yourself. So I know the cosmic answer to the most useless and stupid question in the whole universe: what makes a chicken feel good?


But when you raise them it makes you feel kind of neat because they are always crowding around your feet and telling you that you are a rock-star. Next I will tell you about turkeys.


Comment by Found Zero
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OK let's sing a song about lettuce.

Great idea Oyate! Now what rhymes with "lettuce"?

Yeah now I got your bed in a leander. I mean head in a bender. Head in a blender. Bed in a leather. But just tell me one word, one single word that rhymes with "lettuce". Can't do it can you? Not even with all your power and all your strengh, you can't do it. See, you are gonna have to invent a whole new word.

Know why this is? Well I sure don't. Why isn't there a work that rhymes with "lettuce"?

Comment by Found Zero
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And since I am homely

And whenever I gets lonely

I sits with the onions and the leaks.

And if I don't have the head-room

And can't get to the bathroom,

I sit with the onions and I peas.

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