Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013: The Year in Review

Well, it's that time of year again. 

The time to look in the mirror and say OMIGOSH WHAT HAVE THE HOLIDAYS DONE TO ME!

No. That's not it.

It's the time of year to look back and see what was accomplished in 2013.

So - without poking around any further - here's a look at how things shaped up on Econopocalypse Ranch in 2013. Are you ready? I am (though I think I may have broken my calculator punching in all the harvest numbers). 


Crops harvested:

Broccoli: 40lbs, 2oz
Turnips: 36lbs
Papaya: 87lbs
Mustard Greens: 20lbs (est.)
Beets: 4lbs, 3oz
Kohlrabi: 10lbs, 1 oz
Cabbage: 16lb, 11oz
Radishes: 10lbs (est.)
Kale: 10lbs (est.)
White potatoes: 109.5 lbs
Carrots: 10lbs
Beans: 26lbs
Garlic: 4lbs
Pineapple: 7.5lbs
Watermelon: 46.5lbs
Strawberries: 15lb (est.)
Cassava: 20lbs
Corn: 25lbs 
Dry beans: 10lbs
Seminole Pumpkins: 35.5lbs
Sweet potatoes: 156lbs
Sugarcane: 73.5
Squash: 16lbs
Various salad greens: 20lbs (est.)
Buckwheat: 2 lbs
Water Chestnuts: 4lbs
Sorghum grain: 4lbs
Amaranth grain: 3lbs
West Indian Gherkins: 1 lb 5oz
Velvet Beans: 4lbs
Various berries: 5lbs
Herbs and teas: 1lb

Total: 832lbs, 6oz

Estimated Egg Count (Chicken and Duck): 250

(Note: I got rid of our poultry this year after multiple predator strikes. Plus, I had a lot of traveling to do... unlike plants, they can't be left alone for days at a time. Dang I miss those eggs...)


1 pecan tree
2 apple trees
1 "long" mulberry
50 sugarcane plants
1 "Pride of Barbados" tree
6 agave plants
1 native persimmon
3 loquats
2 peaches
3 jujubes
2 banana trees
1 clump of bamboo
4 native pawpaws
6 avocadoes
2 rabbit eye blueberries
3 goji berries
5 pineapples
1 prickly pear
2 lemon trees
3 loquat trees
5 figs


Built/dug 5 new garden beds
Began building a 96 square foot Epic Tree Fort
Redid front walk
Changed side fence and created nursery area
Added potting soil bin
Acquired new Clarington forge digging tools
Acquired new British-made machete
Acquired a Silverfire TLUD stove
Acquired a better tiller
Acquired a huge pile of tree shreds
Took down former goat run
Made a new worm bin
Created an in-ground cassava storage pit
Created a greywater oasis
Took down a rotten oak
Started deep mulching "islands" in the front food forest



1 mulberry
1 chocolate pudding fruit
1 tamarind
1 bed of ginger
1 cinnamon tree
1 grumichama
1 jabuticaba
1 acerola cherry
3 surinam cherry
1 cherry of the Rio Grande
Multiple canna lilies
1 heliconia
Multiple naranjillas
1 jackfruit
1 tropical almond
1 fig
1 canistel
3 edible hibiscus
1 katuk
1 monk's hood
1 sea purslane
1 Gynura procumbens
1 saltbush
3 turmeric


Stepping stones
Bird feeder


Total Posts: 373

Survival Plant Profiles Created: 9

New Videos Posted: 7

Top Posts:


Articles for "Natural Awakenings" Magazine: 12
Articles for "The Marion Gardener:" 5
Articles/posts for Mother Earth News: 15
Articles/posts for The Prepper Project: 152
Seed-saving/Survival Crop comic book: 10 pages


This year we harvested almost 250% more than we did last year in 2012.

Granted, 2012 wasn't a very good year because of the toxic manure issue - but I'm still quite pleased with the overall results. (Incidentally, the manure problem was mostly cleared up in 2013's annual beds after generous applications of biochar. Some of the trees are still crippled, however, and I'm starting to doubt they'll ever recover.)

I'll repeat my disclaimer on numbers from last year: our weights are approximate (though based on a lot of notes) since many things were eaten in the garden and never made it to the scale to be weighed. We also didn't bother weighing most of the salads we consumed - or the edible weeds we mixed into stir-fries.

The food forest made a good jump forward this year. Some of the trees added a good 3-5 feet of growth, though we aren't getting many fruit yet other than the occasional fig or kumquat. The blueberries are failing to grow with any speed, unfortunately, but the pomegranates and loquats are shooting for the sky. One day our harvest numbers will be outrageously large thanks to the tree crops. I hope more of them will start bearing in 2014 - the deep mulching and chop n' drop programs across the half-acre food forest are bound to make a difference.

As for the blog, I now regularly get between 500-1000 pageviews a day - a lot better than 2012. The newsletter has almost 100 subscribers and the feedback has been quite positive. I greatly enjoy the many sharp folk that stop by here and comment on a regular basis, not to mention the very appreciated people that mail me seeds and cuttings to try out.

There will be lots of new and wonderful things to report in the New Year. May your gardens overflow with abundance in 2014. Personally, I can't wait for spring. If this winter continues to be mild, it'll be an amazing year for my citrus and other borderline species.

All the best,

-David the Good


At December 31, 2013 at 10:18 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep up the good work, David. I really enjoy your blog and newsletter!

At December 31, 2013 at 12:14 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

Thank you.

At December 31, 2013 at 7:32 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I enjoy your writing, too! Question for ya: My broccoli plants look wonderful but are only producing tiny heads of broccoli....what gives?


At December 31, 2013 at 8:57 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

My bet is that they don't like the warm weather. Some of mine are doing the same thing as yours right now.

At January 1, 2014 at 5:12 PM , Blogger AndreaS said...

I love your articles. I find them inspiring and educational since I am just beginning the journey to self-sufficient life. Question - what is a saltbush and how is it used? Thanks

At January 1, 2014 at 8:54 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

Andrea - nice to have you along for the journey. Thank you.

Here's a little on the saltbush I'm growing: http://www.pfaf.org/user/plant.aspx?latinname=Atriplex+halimus

At July 31, 2014 at 4:02 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I stumbled across your blog. Found it interesting and informative. Just curious as to the size of your place. I own a small yard in town and am working to find out how much I can grow.

At July 31, 2014 at 9:00 PM , Blogger David The Good said...

We have 1 acre. Even on a small yard you can pull in a few thousand lbs of food, though. Most of my yard isn't in serious production yet.


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