Homesteading is a lifestyle of self-sufficiency. The goal is to support yourself using mostly, or only, what you can do on your own. Homesteading takes a lot of effort, determination, and careful planning. So let’s start creating your plan with these eleven life-saving basics that every homesteader should know.
1. Grow Your Own Food
Whether you have acres of land or just a small yard, grow what you can. Stick to foods that do well in your climate and can be put up for winter.
2. Raise Livestock
Raising animals like chickens, pigs, or cows will give you a source of meat that doesn’t depend on the grocery store. This is vital if you’re planning to live in an extremely rural setting.
3. Find A Network
Homesteading is about self-sufficiency, but if you don’t have the skills for a task, you’ll need someone who does. Look around online for homesteading groups with members near you and get in touch to find out if you might be able to trade or barter services in the future.
4. Save Money
When you can’t barter or trade for what you need, you’ll need money. So let’s make sure you’re saving as much as you can.
- Don’t use paper plates, cups, or napkins. Always ask yourself if something is reusable before you buy it.
- Hang clothes outside to dry instead of using a dryer.
- Choosesolar for your electricity needs. It’ll lower your monthly bill and give you access to a tax credit.
- If you have cows, use some of their milk to make your own cheese and butter.
5.Learn To Hunt And Forage
Wild animals can supplement your food supply, and so can food that grows in the area. Learn how to hunt animals properly and make sure you’re only hunting them when it’s legal to do so. Check the area around your homestead for foods that grow naturally, like blackberries or onions. Never eat anything you’re not completely sure is safe.
6. Can Your Food
Canning lets you store tomatoes, beans, fruits, corn, and other garden favorites in airtight containers for winter. It’s the best way to make sure you don’t waste anything from your garden, and it’s a homesteading must. It can be tricky, so make sure you learn how to can food safely.
7. Buy In Bulk
Plan trips into town every few months to load up on staples like flour, sugar, rice, and any beans you aren’t growing yourself. It’ll guarantee you have a small store of food, and buying in bulk saves money.
8. Learn Basic Auto Skills
In a rural setting, an ambulance might not be able to reach you or might take a while to arrive. You need to be able to get to a town with a hospital on your own. Learning to do basic maintenance and repairs could be the difference between life and death if you need to get someone to a hospital quickly.
9. Know Your Animals
Animals can be a huge threat to homesteaders. They can eat your garden, hunt your livestock or pets, and even hurt you. Make sure to ask these important questions when considering an area.
- What kind of animals live in the area, and how likely are they to cause problems?
- How can you protect yourself, your livestock, and your garden?
10. Build A Greenhouse
A greenhouse allows you to have a garden all year, which can be life-saving if you have a bad winter. The further away from other people you’re going to live, the more important this becomes. A greenhouse also protects the food you’re growing from wild animals that might think it’s a tasty snack.
11. Learn First Aid
As mentioned in tip eight, an ambulance might not be able to reach you if someone on your homestead is injured. It’s crucial to know basic first aid so that you can stabilize and treat an injured person.
Homesteading can be dangerous, but with these eleven life-saving tips, you can keep yourself and your loved ones safe. Happy homesteading!