I’m gathering all my Seeds, grow lamp and starter pots for this year’s garden. Last year I started to early (mid Feb.) and many of my plants died because it was to early to plant before the frost date. Last year was also a little crazy with a very damp and cool May and June so the tomatoes and peppers did not grow very well. This year I’m starting a couple of weeks later and I’m adding a lot of small planters just in case I need to transfer my seedlings before the raised beds are ready for planting due to weather.
This last winter has been long but it did not get cold and the ground never had a hard freeze. So while I’m still cutting kindling for the wood stove. I can get started on clean up of the raised beds, turn the soil over and prep the beds for planting. I want to try an experiment with one raised bed draping the PVC frames in clear heavy duty plastic to make a mini green house for planting early cole crops like broccoli. Depending on the soil temp and air temp of the mini green house I could start some greens for early spring salads. I think having a garden full off fresh veggies is going to darned important this year! We will see the supply chain in the USA have some hiccups.
You may have seen some the panic buying on the west coast on the internet. It seems bottled water, beans and rice are the new disaster supply rather that the milk, bread and eggs “Disaster Prep”! I don’t think water will stop coming out of the tap or the power going out anytime soon. So buying a lot of bottled water is silly and a waste of money right now. If you filter your tap water like I do, a couple of extra water filters would be money well spent. I don’t thing the electrical grid will go down anytime soon. So you can probably skip buying a generator or a bunch of gasoline or fuel to cook your food. Your internet and phone probably won’t suddenly stop working. You want to have your utility bills paid so they keep running so have money on hand to keep those bills up to date. Manufacturing jobs will probably have some lay offs or furloughs. Start hoarding your money/cash, so you can keep basic bills paid if the school closes down and some one has to be at home with kids.
While everyone is going crazy about the Stock market and Wall street, I think the BIG STORY in the next 4-6 weeks will be the Supply chain breaking down. We know that most stores are full of cheap china crap, but your coffee comes either from Africa or south/central America. Tea, Chocolate are also food products that are not grown here in the USA. I’m not just talking about these products becoming expensive. Some of the products may not be available for any price! I suspect the produce section of the local grocery stores will get more limited on selection and out of season produce prices will probably go up. If you have not tried growing a garden this is great time to get a few seeds or plant starts and try out that container/herb garden or raised bed garden or a perma-culture set up in your yard. What ever idea you have thought about trying to garden. You now have a great motivation to get started. Another bonus of a garden is it will help keep you busy if you or your family get quarantined for 2-4 weeks. Having to stay home during a quarantine does not mean you have to stay always indoors.
Take time to think and not just panic/stampede with the herd.
- If people are crowding around a store, go to a different store. Sure Costco/Sam’s club might have great prices but if the shelves are empty all you did is expose your self to a crowd and did not get what you wanted to buy. If you are standing in a long line you are preparing wrong. Leave, try a different store or try shopping at a different time.
- Make a list of what you need/want and if something on the list is not available, get the next item.
- Think outside of the box! I got my P100 masks in the little home improvement/tools section of my local Fred Meyers at the end of January when Home Depot/Lowes were completely sold out of masks of any sort. Fred Meyers still had masks. If you missed out on buying masks wait until the panic buyers and profiteers find out the market is saturated. Then the price will drop and then you can get those items like masks. Panic buying seldom lasts more than a couple of weeks as people just can’t afford the high prices or refuse to pay the profiteers.
- Get stuff for treating the flu symptoms! Vitamins, cough syrup, decongestants. Herbal teas, honey, lemon juice, Essential oils. Aspirin non-aspirin fever/pain relievers, juices, gatorade ginger ale or sprite. What ever you want to have on hand for a cold/flu.
- Bleach and spray bottles for disinfection. A couple dollars for a quart or 1/2 gallon of bleach, diluted with a couple cups water poured into a spray bottle will disinfect every thing in your house for a couple of months. I like the Lysol Multi purpose cleaner in lemon scent and Mountain fresh scent. I have no idea how much a bottle costs today as I got a couple of bottles in Nov./Dec of last year at $1.49 for a 32 oz. spray bottle on sale at Family dollar store.
This little Pandemic/new flu is going to take at least another 6-18 months to work out the new NORMAL. So far it looks like the 80% of people get FLU symptoms, 10% get very sick and about 5-10% put a respirator level of sick. The Corona virus is out in the world and we will have deal with it. I can lay blame on China or the CDC and politicians, but blame is irrelevant at this point. Corona virus/ Covid-19 is here in the USA and everyone has to deal with it.