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What advice do you have for those starting survival gardens?

Many preppers want to garden in order to create a personal food source. A readers asks Tess what advice she has for those starting survival gardens.

Howdy Tess,

I got some basic foodstuffs to start a larder, but I want to start a garden to start putting food away myself.  I’m limited on space because I live in the burbs.  I’ve seen alot of websites selling open pollinated seeds and think I know which ones to get.  Can you give an old man some advice before I start this project?

Thanks, Tony


Hi Tony,

There are many different types of gardening techniques designed for small spaces. In fact many people, my family included, have had great success with Square foot Gardening (Mel Bartholomew) and lasagna gardening. You could plant companion vegetables together like the Indians did (e.g., three sisters). Companion plants keep each other healthy and even protect the more vulnerable plants from insects.

Creating your own compost from vegetable and fruit scraps, cardboard, leaves, grass clippings, etc., will also provide added nutrients to your garden. Learn more here.

If this is your first garden, you may want to consider starting out with the easiest types of vegetables and fruits to grow, such as the following:

  • Squash/Zucchini
  • Berries – Blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, etc.
  • Grapes
  • Peas/Beans
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Peppers
  • Pumpkin

Read more considerations for a survival garden here.

Also, most of the items listed above are good candidates for canning. Be sure to consider what native fruits and vegetables that grow naturally in your area. It will be easier and more successful for you if you focus on those. You do not want your gardening to be an unwelcome chore. I would also look into succession planting to get the most harvests out of your garden.

The best piece of advice that I can give you is to make sure your healthy soil.  Also, choose nutritious plants that can provide for you and your family during hard times. Most importantly, just get used to gardening. Each gardening season you will increase your gardening skills, and maybe even pick up a few new tricks. (If you do, share them with Ready Nutrition. We all benefit from each other.)

Feel free to peruse the gardening section of this website to find gardening tips and tricks. Thank you for your question, Tony, and I hope this helps!

Good luck,


This article was originally published at Ready Nutrition™ on January 8th, 2013

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