Root cellar experiment (part 2)

Three weeks later
Winter came and snow covered our mini-root-cellar. Note: make some kind of mark above ground so you don’t risk loosing track of your cellar. We spent 15 min digging around.

2-veckor-1

Problems
A bit too chilly (temp: 0 degrees Celsius) . Some moist in the bottom (probably condensation from the veggies). Some mold (only on the skin) on the beetroot and onion.

3-veckor

Solutions:
Deeper hole in the ground and/or thicker insulation (hay, grass etc) above and around the container should increase temp. A net or strainer of some sort a few cm above the floor should keep the veggies above the moist that gathers, and thereby lessen risk of mold.

Summary:
Success! Food kept fresh for three weeks without electricity! With our upgrades, we’ll try 2 months!

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Let’s make a root cellar

In case you ever need to store food in a chilly place, and for some strange reason your fridge gave up on you – time to get your hands dirty.

In this experiment we create a “root cellar”. Exploiting the fact that below ground temperature is (supposedly) around 4-7 degrees Celsius all year round. This was the reason our ancestors were creating “potato cellars” way back before the industrialization era. Food won’t freeze, and won’t rot. For a while…

We are practicing a modified version of a root cellar from Jim Cobb’s “Preppers Long term survival guide“. He recommends using a metal barrel, but we’re going for a plastic barrel for longevity and to avoid rust. Remember it’s an experiment, and we’re gonna follow up on this in a few weeks.

Step 1. Dig a hole deep and wide enough for your barrel. Allow for 5cm (2 inches) of the top above ground.

Step 1. Choose a slightly elevated place for your cellar, where water is unlikely to gather. (Dig a hole deep and wide enough for your barrel. Allow for 5cm (2 inches) above ground level to avoid water collecting above your barrel.

 

rc2

Step 2. Place your food and a thermometer inside. We threw in some random veggies. Will they freeze? Will they rot? Will they stay fresh? If so – for how long? And is it true that below ground temperature is approx. 4-7 degrees Celsius all year round?

 

rc3

Step 3. Cover with the lid and an extra layer of plastic to keep moist out.

 

rc4

Step 4. Cover again with small branches and leaf or grass or hay, to create a layer of air, to avoid ice during winter.

 

rc5

Step 5. Place a protective layer, in case the malicious militia runs your cellar over with a tank, hunting for food.

 

Step 6: Camouflage. Protect your stash by making people go around, not across.

Step 6. Camouflage with dirt and stuff of the season. Protect your stash by making people go around, not across.

 

Our plants of 2016 (part 3)

Pictures of the plants and our community garden. The plants have now been outdoors for at least 6 weeks. Bad news, 7 of 8 common bean didn’t make it. Since we were too eager to move them outdoors they died during the last cold nights of June. But one is still kickin’ it. Good news: one is still kicking it!

Welcome to our semi-squatted piece of earth.

Welcome to our semi-squatted piece of earth.

Broad bean reaching high (good soil). Sharing space with some unknown plants of foreign origin. Doing great.

Broad bean reaching high (good soil). Sharing space with some unknown plants of foreign origin. Doing great.

Chards. Ready for harvest! By good this is along with broad bean and potato one of the Must-haves for every anxious prepper.

Chards. Ready for harvest! By god!!! This is along with broad bean and potato one of the “must-grow” for every anxious prepper.

Graveyard... this is where our awsome common bean should have swirled the tripod we build. Now our Butternut pumpkin (experiment) is taking over. We just planted a bunch of seeds from a store bought pumpkin and off they went!

Graveyard… this is where our awesome common bean should have swirled the tripod we built (1 is still alive in lower right corner). Now our Butternut pumpkin (experiment) is taking over the corners. We just planted a bunch of seeds from a store-bought pumpkin and off they went! In the middle there are some friends cabbage.

Some friends "wild strawberries". Planted last year and still going strong. Less work + twice harvest = awesomeness.

Some friends “wild strawberries”. Planted last year and still going strong. “Less work + twice harvest = awesomeness” (quoted fat guy chilling in the background)

Rhubarb + 1 lonely tomato in the middle. Not a good combo. Tomato will get suffocated. Live and learn.

Rhubarb + 1 lonely tomato in the middle. Not a good combo. Tomato will get suffocated. Live and learn.

Today's harvest! One big bag of chard. Cheers!

Today’s harvest! One big bag of chard. Thank you nature! Fuck you Vattenfall!

 

Our plants of 2016 (part 2)

This year we were too eager to saw the seeds. Result: too large plants. Ok, so this don’t have to be a problem, if you have the space indoors while it’s too cold outside.

Bathroom - Food factory - all in one

Bathroom – Food factory – all in one

This year, we didn’t. Where we live, we have to wait until beginning of June. This picture show first replanting indoors. Everything is going good. Too good… Especially the “common bean”, as you can see each one got their own little tree that they can work their magic on. Its scary how fast they grow. We’re talking 10cm / 24 hours on a sunny day, searching for stuff they can attach too and swirl up against.

Moscow Death Brigade – Papers, please!

We post this song as a reminder that thousands of humans are still desperately trying to get into Fortress Europe, seeking a refuge from poverty, war and political or social persecution. Sweden and many other countries has closed their borders, and the EU has made a deal with Turkey to close the main gate into Europe. But the world is still burning. It’s just not as obvious as it was one year ago.
But we’re gonna shut up now and let MDB tell the story.

“The circle closes and the history repeats itself
Like 80 years ago abandoning those to the death
Who happened to be born on the wrong side of the fence
Ignoring obvious atrocities and cries for help”

Lyrics:

Wrong place of birth, wrong papers, wrong accent
“Your presence here is unacceptable accident“
They turn backs on them, puppetry level’s excellent
They’re spitting lies in their eyes and never hesitate

You know what I’m saying, it’s time to spare your prayers
They look the other way for terrorists, smugglers and slavers
But if you’re running for your life, trying to escape the slaughter
They’ll let your wife die and feast on your sons and daughters

Poison the water, the feast of legalized murder
Their lies about human rights don’t cost a quarter
They bomb your home, let the beast roam, close the border
And feed the world another tale by double-tongued reporter

Forward to the past, Can I ask? Do you remember
How the allies were sending people back to gas chamber?
Beware the beast, at least you know what to expect
The circle closes and the history repeats itself

Hook 2x:
Papers, please! They get you on your knees
Straight face, race to the death, Deaf to your pleas
Who’s the real illegal people, who’s the real disease?
We’re all immigrants, We’re all refugees.

The circle closes and the history repeats itself
Like 80 years ago abandoning those to the death
Who happened to be born on the wrong side of the fence
Ignoring obvious atrocities and cries for help

Not all was apathy – fallacy, lost humanity
Progressive wanna-be society begets another malady
No remedy, humanitarian calamity
another people denied the right to live with vanity

Another Human race catastrophe,
Another instance of entitled masses showing lack of empathy
Authorities are waging war, you people lie in idleness
Refuse to take responsibility for leaders’ violence

Communities of hypocrites reveal their rotten values
“Civilized world” devoid of basic principles of kindness
Close minded, close the borders: entry denied
The price of economic comfort is their innocent lives

Hook 2x:
Papers, please! They get you on your knees
Straight face, race to the death, Deaf to your pleas
Who’s the real illegal people, who’s the real disease?
We’re all immigrants, We’re all refugees.

Face the facts, no thanks, “Your passport lacks stamps
Please go back for war, torture and the death camps”
Join the ranks, labeled as illegal people
Cursed by those who suck blood from golden calf’s nipple

Broken families, tragedies, who the devil is
They put another spiked wall on the land they’ve seized
Barbed wire, peace expires, lost evidence
Infection of the whole soul, unknown genesis

Our plants of 2016

plantation_small

The seeds went into soil around beginning of April. This year’s batch is way smaller than 2013 since we’ve moved to a new place. Good for us thou, we now have access to a squatted community garden. Anyway this year we got some chard, red cabbage, a fistful of broad bean (naturally!) , just as many “common beans” (since they look so cool on a tripod), carrots and a few parsnips since they’re almost as sweet as us.

We used the same batch of seeds as we used for the harvest of 2013. We’ll see if they still got some life in ’em.