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Friday freedom question: spring & summer prepping

I got to thinking yesterday about how preparedness tends to get emphasized more in late Summer and fall. Heck, these days there’s even a whole month observed in prepping’s honor (September, of course).

Makes sense. Crops come in. Time to preserve food. Weather’s going south. Time to check the vehicle emergency kit. And so on.

But we who “think prep” in ways that go beyond canning and emergency preparedness have extra preps for this time of year, too. Replace stashed water supplies for those hot months. Check and use up the veggies that have survived in the root cellar since last year. Buy extra ammo for those liesurely summer plinking sessions. Make sure the winter-stored fuel is in shape for the mower and other summertime power equipment. Stuff like that.

So I’m asking: What special preps do you make (or what existing preps do you take care to doublecheck) come spring or early summer?


  1. Joel
    Joel April 22, 2016 6:29 am

    Like you said, autumn is a time of prepping for winter, and it involves hardening structures and putting up supplies for warmth in the cold.

    For me, spring is a time of prepping for summer, which involves putting down the books, stepping away from the Internet a bit, and shaking off the lethargy. Getting myself in shape for the work projects that can only be done in summer.

  2. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty April 22, 2016 6:43 am

    I do pretty much as Joel does. This summer I’m determined to do some home maintenance and repairs that will truly make me better prepared to face next winter. They are not going to be mild and warm forever.

    Prepping for summer is usually limited to getting the garden going (for whatever it is worth) and cleaning up after winter damage or deterioration. I inventory my storage and replace what is necessary. Canned vegetables are on sale often in the spring, for instance, to clear the shelves for the new crop to come. I’ll also make the annual trip to the city to get the very few things I can’t get anywhere else, as well as attend the only out of town gun show worth bothering with.

    And then I go shooting!! YAY

  3. Bear
    Bear April 22, 2016 6:55 am

    Cyclic-type prepping… The usual stuff to make sure yard tools are ready, getting stuff planted in the garden (which actually starts in January here, with more added as the temps go up). This is hurricane country, so I make sure I’ve evac stuff ready.

  4. Pat
    Pat April 22, 2016 7:41 am

    I, too, am preparing the garden, and preparing for hurricane weather, which is bugging-in.
    I’ve never had to leave home – yet – no matter how bad the hurricane.

    This year I do plan to dehydrate more fruits and vegetables (from garden or market) as they come in season, and some jerky as well. My dehydrator is 18 years old, and I only hope it continues to hold up; it is noisier and seems to be getting hotter than the temperature indicates.

  5. LarryA
    LarryA April 22, 2016 8:05 am

    Last year the Texas Legislature passed a law declaring an annual sales tax holiday for “Emergency Preparation Supplies.” This first year it runs April 23-25. The list of items included is short (no guns or ammo) but eclectic.

    If I needed “a portable generator used to provide light or communications or to preserve perishable food in the event of a power outage, the sales price of which is less than $3,000” I could save a couple of hundred dollars. OTOH saving 8% sales tax on “a nonelectric can opener” isn’t going to be a heart-stopper. But it’s good to have them in the list.

    In the long run, it’s the thought that counts. When even the official government emergency preparedness folks are telling Joe Sixpak, “In case of disaster you’re on your own for three days,” people are starting pay more attention to us curmudgeons.

    Me? Right now I’m up to my neck in putting on a Friends of NRA event, planting seeds in a different garden.

  6. Fred
    Fred April 22, 2016 9:27 am

    Water. Sustained temps above 100 here, need water.
    Dried food. Refrigeration goes, need food.
    If bug out on foot is needed then have to change expectations of daily distance and time of day for travel. Swap water for cold gear.

  7. Ellendra
    Ellendra April 22, 2016 1:47 pm

    Not sure if this is a spring or just a late-winter thing, but I do a full seed inventory every year, and stock up on more seeds before the rush hits. My inventory usually coincides with cabin fever, so the exact timing depends on the weather. My seed ordering list tends to start with the assumption “If TSHTF, what would I wish I could grow?” and then gets culled until it matches my budget.

    Expanding the garden, planting more trees and perennials. Oh, heck, more plants in general. This year, I have 2 extra acres of tillable land to work with. Most of it will be in medicinal herbs (no, not THAT one), but a good portion will be fruits and veggies. A few years ago I scored some seeds for a rare variety of flour corn, and I’ve been expanding my seed supply ever since. This year, I’ll be able to grow enough to actually eat it regularly, instead of saving it all for seed. I’m also putting in a huge berry patch. 200 strawberry plants, in 8 different varieties!

    Oh, and I almost forgot, there are overwintered crops that are harvesting in spring/summer. For those, this time of year is the same as the fall harvest season in terms of prepping. I have a huge garlic patch that I just got done mulching, those are harvested around the middle of summer. And some of the seeds I bought this year are for things like winter rye, which are planted in the fall and harvested in spring.

    Spring is also “expand the herd” time for those who are able to keep livestock. I’m not yet, but if I were, this would be the time to get chicks and lambs.

    In some ways, I am prepping for a specific crisis. My new employer is entering a slow period, my hours have already been cut to 2 days a week, unless I pick up someone else’s shift. Diminished income is definitely worth prepping for!
    (On the other hand, I now have lots of gardening time.)

  8. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty April 23, 2016 6:05 am

    Ellendra, I do so envy your energy and opportunities. Just a thought… it would seem good to contemplate how long one person could do all that. As I get older, I can do less and less… even if I had the opportunity.

    I have failed to make one “prep” that should probably be an important part of any plan. I don’t have anyone to help me with the things I can no longer do myself. And there really is nobody to ask right now. Everyone I know is far too busy with their own work and problems.

    I can call on a few folks here if I have an emergency, of course, but I wouldn’t dream of asking them to help with the day to day stuff I simply can no longer accomplish. I’ve had to cut back expectations of myself and others, and a SHTF situation would certainly not help.

    And it’s not just older folks like me. What would you do if you broke an arm or leg? Or were too sick to get out of bed? And that’s especially true if you have livestock.

    Just food for thought.

  9. Ellendra
    Ellendra April 23, 2016 11:14 am

    Well, Mama, I haven’t quite figured out how to install a wheelchair ramp on my hillside, but I did recently acquire a used garden tractor that works pretty well as an ATV. Once I get up the hill, I can garden sitting on the ground. In fact, most of my gardening gets done that way, I just sit on my butt and scoot alongside the row. Looks weird when I’m harvesting the corn, but it gets the job done.

    The majority of what I grow are perennials. They take care of themselves. And I have designs for automatic livestock feeders that I’m tinkering with, I just don’t have the livestock yet to test them with.

    And, yes. I do think about that. A lot. I may have climbed out of the wheelchair a few years ago, but I still remember what it’s like.

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