When it comes to homestead living ideas, it’s all about a more sustainable and self-sufficient lifestyle. Use organic practices on the landscape and in the gardens. Make and use homemade compost in the family vegetable garden. Pay attention to energy efficiency in the design of buildings. And select appliances based on their efficient use of resources.
The homestead and ranch life can also include raising chickens for a steady supply of fresh eggs. (This is true for large acreage properties and even in some suburban homes.) On larger ranch and homesteads, becoming more self-sufficient means drilling wells and installing backup water pumps.
Here are some great products and homestead living ideas that make the ranch, homestead and self-sufficient lifestyle easier. For information about planting fruit trees on your homestead property, read Top Five Fruit Trees for some great advice. Also read How to Build an Instant Rusted Corrugated Metal Fence.
Deep Well Hand Pump Keeps Water Flowing in a Disaster
The homestead and ranch life is often dependent upon wells for access to water. So, a deep well hand pump can be one of the most important pieces of equipment you can own. Quite simply, a hand-powered pump can provide life-saving access to water in the event of a power blackout, generator failure, or a natural disaster.
A Standard Deep Well Hand Pump from Bison Pumps is the perfect backup to an electric pump. It provides access to well water when the electric power goes out. A hand pump from Bison Pumps can be installed alongside or in-line with an electric submersible pump. A high-quality pump, hand-crafted in the USA for years of dependable service. In addition, it comes with a lifetime warranty.
The pump’s stainless steel lift rod is FDA approved for potable water, and the tensile strength of the stainless steel is vastly superior to fiberglass. The entire pump is constructed of stainless steel. The pump is TIG-welded and hand-polished to a mirror finish.
Bison Pumps makes a wide variety of hand-operated well pumps, including the Bison Shallow Well Hand Pump (Model 1900) that is perfect for pressurizing a water tank. Bison also sells all the accessories needed for proper pump installations. For more information about pumps and accessories– including pricing, technical support and finding the nearest dealer– visit BisonPumps.com.
Homestead Living Ideas: Mother Nature’s Mosquito Control
Homestead and ranch properties can become mosquito breeding grounds in the hot summer months. Mosquitoes lay their eggs in standing water. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take much standing water for mosquitoes to breed. In fact, many species of mosquitoes can lay eggs in as little as a botttlecap full of water!
The first step in mosquito control is to remove as much standing water from your property as possible. Drain birdbaths, children’s wading pools, saucers under container plants, and other standing water at least weekly. Throw away old tires and plastic containers that can hold rainwater.
Wherever water remains or can collect after a rainfall, use Mother Nature’s way to control mosquito populations. It’s called Bacillus thuringiensis israelensis — BTI for short. BTI is a bacterium that occurs naturally in nature, and it attacks only mosquito larvae. BTI is deadly to mosquito larvae but harmless to other living things. This bacterium kills mosquitoes before they can grow up to be adults that bite people and spread deadly diseases.
BTI is the active ingredient in Summit Mosquito Dunks®, the top-selling biological mosquito control in the world. Just float a chemical-free Mosquito Dunk in ponds, birdbaths, outdoor tubs, or water gardens. Put a Mosquito Dunk in animal watering troughs. Or anywhere water collects and stands.
Mosquito Dunks are organic. They won’t harm people, pets, plants, wildlife or beneficial insects. Plus, Mosquito Dunks are approved for use in fish habitats and animal watering troughs.
Each biodegradable Mosquito Dunk treats up to 100 square feet of surface water, and it remains active for 30 days or more. Mosquito Dunks® are available at hardware stores, garden centers and on Amazon.com.
Keep Your Backyard Flock Cozy and Warm
Our list of great homestead living ideas includes keeping animals and poultry warm during cold weather. However, putting doggie-style sweaters isn’t a practical solution for chickens. The Cozy Coop Flat Panel Heater is a better choice.
Put the Cozy Coop Flat Panel virtually anywhere with no worries. The unit is small, and the sleek design looks great. This powerful heater combines both radiant and convection heat to protect birds and poultry from the cold. The Cozy Coop heater is safe to use around animals. And it uses just 200 watts—about 13% the electricity of a standard 1,500 watt space heater.
The Cozy Coop is an ETL certified radiant heater for chicken coops. (Place this ETL certified Zero-Clearance product near combustible surfaces without causing a fire hazard.) The heater has a built-in thermostat and an in-cord on/off switch for fingertip control. It silently keeps chickens comfortable and warm. The Cozy Coop Flat Panel Heater is available from Amazon.com.
Homestead Living Ideas: A Human-Powered Rotary Cultivator
Any story about old-fashioned values and homestead living ideas is likely to include Lehman’s. The Lehman’s store in Kidron, Ohio, proudly sells simple products for a simpler life. Since 1955, the company has offered old-fashioned technology that still works in a modern world.
Lehman’s worked with local Amish craftsmen to redesign a human-powered garden cultivator. The result is Lehman’s Own Rotary Cultivator, which makes it easy to rid a garden of weeds.
Just push the rotary cultivator in between garden rows. The five angled tines break up clods and level the dirt in planting beds. Flip the cultivator over and the slicing bar cuts off weeds just below the surface. (The tilling and weeding width is 11 inches). The 37-inch-long oak handle is height adjustable. That makes tilling comfortable no matter how short or tall you are. Check price on Amazon.
Heirloom Seed Collection
A self-contained heirloom seed collection is a cost-effective way to stock up on open pollinated, organic, non-GMO seeds. This collection contains 100% heirloom seeds including beans, tomatoes, pumpkin, cucumbers, lettuce, squash, peppers, sunflower, carrots, radish, spinach, watermelon, and more.
Included are step by step instructions and a Seed Saving Guide. This helpful information tells you all about planting times and harvesting instructions. Plus, the information includes a primer on seed saving that will help you turn your garden into an everlasting food supply. Store these seeds in the included air tight, moisture proof resealable bag for safe and long-term storage. Makes a great gift for any homesteader. Check price on Amazon.
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