Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Design your life to include more money, health and happiness with less stuff, space and energy.

Apocalypse-Proof Your Small Home

I know what you’re thinking: this small space living is cool and all, but how will I eat in the event of a societal collapse? Sprawling McMansions with two-acre lots might be an environmental nightmare in times of plenty, but we might be appreciative for all the farming land when SHTF. Fear not, the good folks at Survivopedia have us covered. They have some great suggestions for growing your own food when the grocery store down the block is overrun by zombies.

Here’s what you do:

    1. Get non-GMO, non-hybrid seeds. GMOs, author┬áTheresa Crouse contends, have been linked to disease, which is probably something you want to avoid when trying to survive. Hybrid seeds aren’t stable, and are not predictable for later batches–an important consideration if you want to live longer than one or two growing seasons.
    2. Save your containers. We know you get a thrill out of recycling that empty yogurt jug, but you might need it to plant some sprouts.
    3. Practice container gardening. Probably not a good idea to wait until things fall apart to get that post-apocalyptic thumb green. Crouse says “carrots, radishes, lettuce, onions, and even tomatoes and peppers” are examples of veggies that need very little room to grow.
    4. Plant a small garden. She says you can build a garden as small as 4′ x 4′–plenty small for most small homes. If you’re in apartment, you might be able to create an overhang on your fire escape (assuming the fuzz don’t see you) or, better yet, on the building’s roof.
    5. Preserve Your Food and Your Food Sources. Start growing now, and save what got. Unlike today, the post apocalyptic foodie scene will have its ups and downs, best to preserve and conserve when you can (pun intended).
    6. Get some edible pets. Keeping livestock in your apartment ain’t too kosher nowadays, but when SHTF, pesky animal control officers will have more important things to do than see if that’s a dog or chicken making the stink in your apartment. Crouse suggests having a local farmer act as daycare worker for your livestock, until the (end) time comes.

For a more detailed explanation, visit Crouse’s post at Survivopedia.

Meteor Shower over City image via Shutterstock

  • Lucy Bo

    Thank you. The last concern I had concerning any SHTF event answered precisely & concisely. I feel even better ’cause I already have most of the stuff on hand as well. Thanks! And now to find a livestock daycare provider……

  • Michelle

    Good points. I’d add too that – if/when the SHTF – it’ll be important to grow calorie-dense vegetables (squash, corn, potatoes, beans…), as tomatoes – while delicious – won’t power a body very long. The book ‘The Resilient Gardener’ digs into this topic well.

  • kris

    Edible pets. Disgusting.

    • Maggie

      That’s what my grandparents did in WW2. They lived in east London but were fortunate to have a small back garden. The family pet rabbits became breeders and the young were used for meat, which was bartered and sold to neighbours. Rationing began in 1940 and lasted until 1954, so the rabbit meat they produced meant a great deal to the family and their community for a long time. So instead of saying ‘disgusting’, think about what real people HAD to do in real-life situations. You might have a different idea.

      • David Friedlander

        thanks for the context. there are and have been people taking similar measures throughout history. our disconnection from where our food comes from is a very recent phenomenon.

  • CELind

    Even cursory research will show that you need nearly a quarter acre of land in a temperate climate to grow enough food for one person for a year. A fire escape garden and a pair of guinea pigs will keep you from starvation an extra couple days at best. And where are you going to store all those preserves? Sorry, but small-space urban living and survivalism go together like ice cream and sawdust.

  • Mill

    This is such a ridiculous piece of writing. If “SHTF” the last place you want to be is in a densely populated urban area, in small confine, amidst thousands or perhaps millions of people.

  • J

    Well doesn’t that contribute to small space living now you suggest we horde seeds and containers . What happened !?