Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Today we feature another picture of the San Francisco Earthquake and Fire. You can see the smoke of burning buildings in the background, and ruble from the earthquake in the streets.

I enjoyed reading your posts about your level of readiness if the grocery stores ran out of food. It really sounds like a number of you are fairly self sufficient when it comes to food. I could make it about 5 days on old stuff in the cupboard. Then, well, we eat the chickens. That gives us another 10 days. The peacocks are big, so six peacocks would take us about another 12 days. After that we would be out of food. I would love to grow our own food in a large garden, but unfortunately our house is situated on a rock, and there is only a couple of inches of top soil. Moving dirt in is a pretty expensive proposition. On the plus side, all of our neighbors raise cows, sheep, goats or pigs, so perhaps my best strategy would be to try and stay in good standing with neighbors, and have something useful to trade.


  1. We're on rock and clay here. What we did when we bought this place was start composting immediately. All raked leaves (except oak), all grass clippings, all veggie trimmings from the kitchen, all went into the heap. We never turned it, just dug it out in the spring and tilled it into the vegetable garden. Now we have a vegetable garden with black humus soil filled with earthworms.

    I bet you could compost the chicken and peacock litter. If you had a tractor, it would be easy for you to add some cow manure too. A tractor would also make it easier for you to move rocks around if you wanted to build raised vegetable garden beds.

    You could start small and expand as needed.

    Right now I am growing the vegs that are so expensive in the store but easy in the home garden -- leaf lettuce, leeks, and heirloom tomatoes.

  2. PJM - If self suffiency means so much to you why didn't you buy property with good soil and it's own water supply?

  3. Speaking of farming in arid rocky conditions, check out the website linked below. It is an outfit called Native Seeds: Southwestern Endangered Aridland Resource Clearing House. (Don't ya just love forced acronyms?) Why try to grow something that is not native to your region? Use seeds that are tried and true winners from your region.


    BTW, I have no connection to these folks.

  4. Marie beat me to my comment. I was going to suggest raised beds and composting too.

    Also, I agree with Marie, you need the tractor.

  5. The movie "San Francisco" (1936) is on Turner Classic Movies Feb 18 at 3PM EST. Starring Clark Gable, Spencer Tracy and of Jeanette MacDonald singing the greatest San Francisco song of them all:
    Advance to 4:00 for the complete song. Plus great special effects.
    Yes, I live near San Francisco.

  6. It's interesting to note that many famous photos of SFO after the quake have been manually altered. Modern digital examination of them reveal much more damage was done to the city than was publicized. Also, while historic records indicate a small number of dead, an examination done in the past ten years of burial records in the SFO/Oakland area indicates that upwards of 3000 were killed in the earthquake. Speculation suggests that tourism and the need to lure business to the area fueled the deception. Local business and government pressured the papers to lie.

  7. PJM: Your caption about good standing with the neighbors reminds me of you sitting under a neighbor's tree (or was it behind a fence?) to use their internet when yours went down. Did you get back in their good graces?

  8. Is that fellow in the center talking on his cell phone? Wow - they days before bluetooth.

  9. I am glad some folks back then were able to take photos -- it must have been a hassle to set up the equipment.

  10. Judging from the hair and attire, the individual in the foreground (with his or her back to the camera) appears to be Asian.

  11. Tractor = garden = security

    Atta boy!


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