Working From Home During The COVID-19 Crisis.
If you are a stay at home person, restricted to working from home while the current pandemic sweeps the world, you should find this post helpful and informative. I have written posts along these lines in the past, however this time I will elaborate and provide a goldmine of info to all and sundry. Well, at least those who are wanting to make life stuck at home a more fertile and full-filling experience.
No matter where you are and no matter what the situation is, there is something that every single being on the planet has in common. We all need to eat. Our bodies need fuel to operate and that fuel is becoming increasingly riskier and more difficult to come by. With the viral infection rate sky-rocketing exponentially, and with no one able to accurately predict anything worth noting, it is up to individual households to begin taking matters into their own hands. This is to protect yourself and your family for what the future may hold.
Supermarket shelves lying empty, people afraid to go outdoors, laws hindering us from living our lives the way we did just six months ago. Well there are some great old school options that I guarantee will do the following:
• Bring families together
• Alleviate Stress
• Improve your financial position immensely
• Provide copious amounts of food for you and your family
• Greatly improve the risk of you getting infected.
The information provided in this post is a win -win situation for anyone. Whether the pandemic clears up or gets worse makes no difference. What you are about to embark on is a long term solution to providing an adequate food source for your family and for a long time into the future.
I came from a farming family. A farming family that went back for centuries. When I first moved to Melbourne, I was bemused to discover how land owners chose to use their front and back yards. Instead of veggie patches, small orchards and plants I deemed useful at the time, I noticed the emphasis was more on ornamentation. This was in the 1990’s, and I remember thinking, “Wow, what if these people’s food source ever dried up, what is their alternative?” Well, it’s about to happen.
I also knew from my own farming background, that most fruit and vegetables bought from fruit shops and supermarkets were not even close to ready to eat. From apples and avocados, to tomatoes, peaches, and watermelons, all were harvested before they are ripened so that stirs could maintain a longer shelf life for their products. But the consumer misses out big time.
As kids, our experience was much different. We would be out in the back yard, picking bright red, fragrant, sweet and tender strawberries fresh off the plant. We had peach trees whose peaches you could not eat without getting soaked in peach juice. Rich and ripe, strongly scented tomatoes, and everything the way it should be.
There is one thing I should mention right about now, and that is that sugar is produced by sunshine. If you want sweet fruit then the sun must be given time to do it’s work. If you want proof of this, then just check any fruit laden tree in late summer. You will discover that the fruit on the outside of the tree, the ones that get the most sunshine, are always sweeter. The one’s on the inside of a tree, shaded by foliage, never fully ripen. So, the more sun, the sweeter the fruit.
But how do you maximise this effect to get the best and sweetest fruit off a fruit tree? Simple. It comes down to pruning skills. Winter pruning is an important part of horticulture. You can’t just leave a fruit tree to fend for itself. If you do, over the years it would grow so high you could never reach the fruit any way. Over the course of time, I will be providing tips, tricks and ideas on how to best prune fruit trees so that you can get bumper crops of large, juicy ripe fruit year after year. I will even show you how one tomato plant can give you up to twenty clones in the same season.
Okay, it’s August now and all you can really do is cultivate. Get that soil ready. That means, digging, weeding, fertilising and letting it rest until the coming spring. By my next post you will learn what to plant first, how many, where to plant, companion planting, and mastering all types of ancient gardening techniques that will ensure you get bumper crops from minimal space.
If you wish to save time and money, then now is a good time to begin germinating some seed varieties. All you need is to create some warmth and you can easily germinate tomatoes, chillies, capsicums, and a host of herb varieties. It’s good to remember that these are spring/summer cropping plants so they will need heat to survive and grow.
You can take a leaf out of any nursery’s book and do what they do, albeit on a smaller level. Create your own simple greenhouse, a small germination bed, that will keep the cold out and help your seeds to germinate. I can go on and explain how you can do this on the cheap, but there are umpteen sources available online. Just google around.
To be successful, seeds or plants, benefit greatly from bottom heat. There are specially designed incubating tables used by nurseries that create heat for seedlings to germinate. After all, a seed is an embryo, an egg of sorts. Without warmth they mostly simply rot away. So to begin with, planting seeds in trays and elevating them on tables or benches is much better than keeping them on the ground where it’s colder. These days, electric seed germinating trays with thermostats are easily available to the general public. They don’t cost an arm and a leg and can easily be sourced from such places like ebay. They are great because they can be used time and again to rapidly germinate all types of seeds up to ten times faster than normal.
When I had a nursery, they were one of my most valuable assets. We could get tomatoes, eggplants, chillies, and other summer fruit and veggies from seed to seedling in less than a week during winter, just by creating an artificial environment. The benefit of that was cropping fruit and vegetables earlier in the season when prices of things like tomatoes were sky high.
One thing to remember is that a lot of times they will need hardening off before transplanting. Like babies, they are tender and if you have grown them under cover (indoors), they will not be acclimatised to the outside world. All they need is short spell of time out doors to harden them off before transplanting.
Never leave them out overnight during late winter or early spring, as the cold nights will destroy them. Choose average days against a wall, away from the wind. Initially the plants will appear droopy and struggle to stand alone. Some may even die. The ones that survive are the one’s you want in your garden.
Yes, we live in cities and our backyards are small. There is always a question of space, but there is also a solution to using minimal space for maximum results. I my next post, I will give you some great ideas on how you can grow more plants than you ever thought possible in a minimal space.
Cheers till then.