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40 Percent Of Russia’s Food Is From Dacha Gardens: This Is What The GMO Megacorps Don’t Want You To Know

While most people in the Western world are completely reliant on large corporate agribusiness enterprises, many Russians feed themselves by growing vegetables and fruits in dacha gardens, which supply an astonishing 40% of the country’s food. Russia is an industrialized country that is larger than the U.S. but grows about half of its total food production in home gardens in a difficult and short-season climate. These dacha gardens are proof of the viability of small-scale sustainable agriculture as a genuine alternative to the highly criticized industrial farming model.

Dacha gardening has been feeding the people of Russia for a millennium. It started as mainly subsistence or survival gardening and has evolved into a self-provisioning model between the Bolshevik Revolution and World War II.

One-third of the Russian population owns a dacha. There are about one million dachas in the Moscow region alone. A typical dacha has a garden plot with a cabin. With a size of 600 square meters or 0.15 acres, dachas were originally intended as recreation getaways of city dwellers and as small gardens for food. Some dacha plots are over 1,200 to 1,500 square meters, but no property exceeds 2.4 acres or almost one hectare.

Growing one’s own food supplies is a habit that has fed the Russian nation for centuries. Russians pride themselves on the desire to grow their own food. This passion has contributed immensely to the sustainability of Russian agriculture.

Despite the mass urbanization and industrialization of the past century, many Russians still migrate to their rural kitchen gardens to grow and harvest fruits and vegetables. The most common dacha fruits and vegetables in cool temperate regions of Russia include apple, blackcurrant, gooseberry, strawberry, plum, pear, grape, potato, cucumber, zucchini, pumpkin, tomato, carrot, cauliflower, radish, turnip, onion, garlic, and parsley.

According to 2011 data from the Russian Statistics Service, dacha gardens produced over 80% of the country’s fruits and berries, over 66% of the vegetables, and almost 80% of the potatoes. Dacha communities also supplied 50% of the nation’s milk, much of it consumed raw. These figures could be higher as they didn’t take into account the self-provisioning efforts of wild harvesting or foraging of wild-growing plants, berries, nuts, and mushrooms.

Dacha gardening or self-provisioning gardening played an important role in the early 1990s after the collapse of the Soviet bloc. When the heavily subsidized commercial agriculture collapsed with the demise of the USSR, dacha gardens survived and were the main reason why the Russian people did not experience a famine during the period. To put this in modern parlance, the distributed architecture of their farming system made it robust.

Key to the success of the Russian mindset is the sharing of surplus food. Dacha communities would share their excess food out of sense of abundance or plenty. This system of sharing resulted in a resilient food network that is sustainable.

Another important aspect of this system is seed saving. Check out our giant database of heirloom seed suppliers.

Russian household agriculture can claim itself as the most extensive system of successful food production of any industrial nation. Dacha gardening shows the possibility of highly centralized, small-scale food production.

No wonder the megacorps hate it: It frees you from their grip…

40-Percent of Russia's Food Is From Dacha Gardens
Image – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r1qK2IJMJ44

66 Awesome Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp

Tarps are great for stowing away in a backpack because they are lightweight, water resistant and very versatile in how you use them. This makes the tarp an ideal material for constructing some pretty cool makeshift shelters when it comes to survival in the wild.

Presented below are several tarp shelter designs to help you get started:

• A-Frame Tarp Shelter
Easy and fast: This shelter is made by stringing paracord between two trees. Then, the tarp is draped over the cord and staked down. You need to stretch the paracord tightly enough that it won’t sag in the middle.

• Sunshade Tarp Shelter
To construct this shelter, tie the paracord to four anchoring points. This shelter is ideal temporary protection against the rain because the water will pool in the middle, however note that as rain continues, water will continue to collect, becoming heavier and requiring that you push it off to the side. You can make this shelter sturdier by adding support to the corners.

• Lean-To Tarp Shelter
To create this shelter, tie paracord to two anchor points. Secure the tarp to the ground on the windward side. This type of shelter is great for deflecting the wind or providing sunshade.

• Tube Tent Tarp Shelter
This shelter is similar to the A-Frame tarp shelter, but the opposite ends of the tarp are secured together to provide a floor. To make it, secure the paracord between two trees and drape over the tarp. This is a sturdy shelter that can prevent rain from seeping in.

• Square Arch Tarp Shelter
Attach two paracord lengths to anchor points that are three feet apart and three feet high. Drape the tarp over the two lengths of paracord. Secure the long ends of the tarp with stakes.

• Bivy Bag Cornet Shelter
Tie the rope around a tree at four to five feet. Hammer in a stake to the ground at the other end. Drape the tarp over the rope diagonally, stretch out the corners, and hammer stakes on each side.

• C-Fly Wedge Shelter
Lay the tarp on the ground and secure it at the long side edge with two to four pegs. Use loop cords for the bottom fold. You can also use an extra rope to pull the fold out. Make a ridge line between two trees and hold the remaining tarp over the ridge line. Tie down each edge of the handing roof-line to the ground to secure it.

Note that cheap tarps tend to deteriorate quickly under UV light exposure, not very eco-friendly! Keep them in the shade when not in use.

Ok here is the link to the rest of the 66 designs: 66 Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp

Image For Pinterest:

66 Awesome Shelters You Can Make With A Tarp
Graphic – off-grid.info. Images:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2f_v7iYeHuE


Companion Planting Guide – Pin, Share, Print Out

Companion Planting
graphic © off-grid.info. Images – PD

Plants need good companions to thrive, however, relationships between them are varied – similar to relationships between people. Certain plants support each other while others just don’t get along! So if you want a thriving garden, make sure the place plants near to their friends! This practice is called companion planting and this handy infographic will show you everything you need to know.

Please hit share, pin to Pinterest or bookmark this useful chart for future use.