Friday, May 3, 2013

Carrying Capacity - Another look

As expected the cold and rain came in today screaming. The wind shifted and the nice warm drying breeze out of the South changed to a gusty Northerner driving a light but steady rain. Out of curiosity more than anything else I drove down to see how one of the local farmers had fared in his attempts at plowing yesterday. The sight of that field was not encouraging as it looked like all he had really accomplished was tearing huge muddy chunks out of the ground more than anything else. At this point any corn crops put in the ground are going to more than likely be hitting the point of diminishing returns when you figure in ground temperature, moisture levels and growth rates. The end results will more than likely be better than last years drought if things return to normal. If they don't then the end result could be just as bad as a drought from an agricultural point of view anyway. In fact the potential is it could be worse since not even silage can be harvested if the fields never dry enough to plant in.

There are still a few more weeks remaining to get the corn in so all is not lost but you must remember at the current moisture levels the fields need at least a week to dry, if not more than that. I imagine the locals will simply switch to soybeans if they miss the date on the corn but the lesson is not lost on those of us who take note of local carrying capacity.

The truth of the matter is that without modern infrastructure and transportation this part of the country would be facing a sever famine level event right now. Even the wild life are feeling the effects of this long cold extended Winter-like Spring. The small numbers of quail that survived are losing eggs to the cold and wet along with the turkey and other ground nesting birds. The loss of agriculture will certainly be felt by the larger grazing animals especially deer and if it goes any further grain prices will go up as much or more than hay prices did last year.Another year of diminishing herd numbers.

On the flip side of things the lakes and ponds have filled back up nicely and the fruit trees seem to be thriving along with the dandelions. I also have seen some impressive wild mustard fields this year, something you don't normally see as the fields are usually turned over by this time of year before those plants actually bloom. If it wasn't for the fact that the rain and cool temps are keeping the bees in their hives 50% of the time they would probably be booming with honey already.

This is all something we as sustainable preppers must keep in mind. The carrying capacity of any given location changes and we must be prepared to take advantage of whatever is offered to minimize the effects of such seasonal anomalies.

My guess is that if we were in a grid down situation right now, game would be scarce and most people would be eating dandelion greens three times a day with maybe some cattail shoots for variety.

Always best to be prepared.

Keep Prepping Everyone!!!


  1. My biggest fear is a short growing season this year for corn, and wheat. Now is the time to stock up on more flour or hard wheat. Prices are going to start climbing as soon as Wall Street and the Ag markets figure this out. I say by months end.

    1. Rob are you back up north yet?

    2. Matt we leave on Monday finally. Do you have an email address?? send it to me through my blog email.

    3. Rob if I can find it I will.

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