It sure feels good to have all of this years firewood stacked! I need to buy a few more tarps to cover some of the stacks but it won’t hurt this unseasoned wood to be exposed to the hot/dry summer of SW Idaho for the next few months. I never thought about the space required for firewood when I bought this house but I knew I wanted enough ground to put in a garden, a nice little lawn and having trees to keep the backyard cool in the summer was a huge bonus. Well I have stacked this years wood in a few unused areas to make sure I have access to well seasoned wood. That is not an easy task for people that have small lots with limited storage space. It is easy to tell a person to store 2-3 years worth of wood and it is cheaper to buy multiple cords of wood in bulk. If your wood storage space is limited to a couple of small wood racks. That is what that person must deal with despite all the wishes and a person might want to have for heating.
I use firewood as my primary heat source in cold weather. There are other options that have lower start up costs and can be at least as safe as using a firewood stove. I like the Mr. Buddy heaters and most propane/natural gas stoves/fireplaces. Yes, there are safety issues storing fuel or gas lines getting cut during some disasters but I think this fuel has some upsides as far as the storage space required compared to several cords of wood.
I’m not a big fan of kerosene heaters as the fuel puts out some very dangerous gasses that are in an enclosed space. Since most homes tend to be insulated. Those gasses will get trapped indoors without proper air flow. In cold weather the last thing you want to do is open a window or door to let the gasses as well as heat escape.
Every type of alternative heating will have positives and negatives for short term and long term heating needs. I recommend you only heat using propane or kerosene while you are awake and active. Yes it can suck to wake up to a cold house. Not dying in your sleep to carbon monoxide poisoning would NOT be considered a positive move for survival!
I have started making a new anti- pet fence for the 3 sisters garden using a PVC pipe frame and the left over plastic fencing material. I think this pvc framed fencing might work to keep most of the critters out of the 3 sister garden beds but still be easy to access to do weeding, watering and other garden chores. I doubt I can stop all critters. Hopefully I can at least keep any damage to a minimum. In the elevated raised bed the radishes are doing great, the lettuce was was spread by the kitties (don’t ask) and I have 3 mini Bok choy plants coming up
Lesson learned staring plants: Use larger pots to hold plants started early or they get root bound. I’m sure more experienced gardeners are thinking to themselves “well duh”. Speaking for myself all those little cells of dirt are so tempting to plant at least a seed in in Feb/March and by the time May arrives the poor plant is root bound and not prone to grow. The reason you start plants early indoors is to have a healthy and vigorous plant ready to grow after any frost danger passes. I’d say you should use pots equivalent to the average “pony pack” that most garden stores/nurseries use for starter plants. I really love the heat pads, the new grow lights and staring boxes. I just thing the 72 cell starter tray would be better for me as 36 size starter tray as the plants might need more time to grow and have strong growth for a May 10th planting, is along time from starting seeds in March.
Embrace “failure” as learning, don’t use it as excuse nor to to try or make yourself a victim. Be honest with yourself about what you do. Is it I can’t or I won’t put in the effort? Any answer is valid but you have live with the results. Do what works for you. I have read many prepper blogs and I went in a different direction for many of my preps. If it seems dumb but it works it isn’t dumb.