Thomas Jefferson envisioned a nation of self-sufficient yeoman farmers when he looked at the future of the United States. The Industrial Revolution and the loss of available land for farming have largely ended Jefferson’s dream. Although it is more difficult to be self-sufficient than it was in the nineteenth century, people can still achieve a large measure of self-sufficiency in the modern world. Here are four tips to make it a reality.
Most people today have a small urban or suburban plot of land that is well under an acre. Even though it is not possible to produce enough for a family for a year, a small garden that can produce organic vegetables is a distinct possibility. A small lot can also support a fruit tree that can produce free apples that can be canned for year-round sustenance.
Hunt for or Raise Meat
Those who are carnivores can go a long way to producing their own meat. It is possible to hunt on public lands in some parts of the country, and a deer or elk can provide months of meat for a family. Those who have a few acres can raise cows, pigs or sheep. These animals can have the side benefit of mowing grass, and places like Western Turf Farms Ltd. can help with getting the Richmond sod and plants on a property. When mature, these animals can provide food. Having a few animals can actually lead to a self-sustaining colony. That can provide food and a bit of income.
Green energy has really been in the news for the past few years. In the last five years, some reports have shown that the cost of a solar electric system has dropped by about 75 percent. While still not cheap, solar panels can pay for themselves in a few years with lower utility payments. Excess energy can also be sold to utility companies to help even more.
A recent chemical spill left 300,000 West Virginians without safe water. It is possible to capture rain water for any number of common uses like watering a garden or washing clothes. A filter or boiling might be a good idea before drinking for water that has been sitting for a while.
Some people have been able to go completely off of the public grid. It is possible, but most people do not want to deal with the hassle. Using these tips can help aid a family in being more self-sufficient in terms of food and water supply.
Hannah Whittenly is a freelance writer from Sacramento, California. A mother of two, Hannah enjoys writing on blogs of all niches. Follow her on Twitter.