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What crops are good to grow in small volumes in self-sustaining/perennial, unattended, edge of forest and in small clearings? These are places that will not have much human presence. Also, what can be planted around them to keep the local fauna from enjoying these hot travel garden spots? After all, if I am going to cache water, food and other supplies along a get home route, why not try to have some fresh food, there, as well?
what ever you plkant, it should look like it belongs there...
learn to forage for wild plants like lambs quarters and bull thistles
www.eattheweeds.com/ - Similar green dean has gone to a lot of work making a bunch of videos you can learn from.
as for you pick em crops...rhubarb would be a good choice..once established it's perenial and needs no tending..but the more you pick it, the better the bed, so you may want to visit the spot a couple times a year and help yoursels.
asperagras.. same thing, but primarily a spring crop.
oats..a small block of oats would choke out competing plants, be self reseeding, and available a couple times a year..and the local wildlife would find and harvest it for you untill you needed it..and them.
a couple stick tee pees of pole beans..self reseeding..pick one that is good as fresh snap beans as well as dried for a longer harvest period..7use thick limbs for the tee pees so they will last a few years.
day lillies..semi wild, will blend in, will take over an area slowly and as green dean will show you, has several edable parts.
broom corn..looks like wild grass...good fall harvest.
check out your cache areas carefully and chose the ones that have the most/best wild resources..the less ground you have to cover foraging, the better.
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in general, any crop that nobody in the area would immediately recognize as food. many folks do not recognize root crops as edible. Potatoes and beets do not show up on shelves with their leaves (beets rarely). carrots would probably be recognized though. some plants are 'understory' types- they grow fine in dappled shade, so are good planted among trees. Here is a list of the most tolerant shade loving vegetable plants to put in the dark corners: Lettuce, Spinach, Swiss chard, Arugula, Endive, Broccoli(and related plants), Kale, Radicchio, Cabbage, Turnip (for greens), Mustard greens. third, consider plants grown in other countries as food but not recognized here: amaranths, yaupon, orach, sweet potato vines. Finally, consider 'helping' by seeding some areas with native plants that also just happen to be proolific and edible - day lilies, cattails, ferns, burdock, chicory, jerusalem artichokes, milkweed, etc. Even a scraggly 'wild' apple or some native plums bear fairly quickly. And branble fruits of course, since their thorns tend to dissuade today's pampered folks from harvesting them much. And yes, asparagus or rhubarb. Plant in scraggly patches rather than neat rows to complete the illusion of weeds.
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your real problem is finding foods that will come back after winter or survive through the root crops idea sounded good as well as straw berries and asperegus the it will take 1 to 3 years to reach any kind of real product though after that they will come back for up to 15 years
Don’t bother trying to disguise food plants. Most people aren’t going to pay any attention because they don’t see much anyway, esp if the plants are growing with weeds and other plants. Foraging takes some knowledge, and it wouldn’t even occur to most people that someone would plant food plants there. And if you’re doing it just to get home, I think we can assume at that point that many people haven’t even figured out what is going on yet, and they won’t be at the scavenging point even if it occurred to them later.
SEED BALLS! These are marble-sized clay balls with compost and seeds mixed in, then dried gently.
Recipe: mix about 5 parts red terra cotta clay (local if you’ve got it, or dry from a pottery shop) with 1 part compost and 1 part seeds. [One ‘part’ can be a cup or more.] Blend the clay and the compost well, then add the seeds. Just damp enough to hold it together is best – too wet and the seeds could sprout, which you don’t want yet. For into balls about ¾” across. Dry gently in the sun or in a warm room. DO NOT dry in the oven, or you could kill the live germ inside the seeds. Store in paper lunch bags. This is a good winter project.
Distribute by tossing them as you walk or drive along the road. They will sit on the ground happily awaiting enough rain to soften the clay/compost, safe from birds and insects. When enough rain falls, they will soften and kind of melt. The clay will keep them damp, the compost will feed them, and many of the seeds will sprout and grow.
I have been taking my suplus of shallots, carrot seed, radish seed, and tomatoes and spreading them out where I think they might grow. These are all from my garden. I don't know what will actually grow in the enviroment I am in but I intend to stray down there and keep tabs.
The shallots will self seed. They are what some call "walking" onions, as they grow in the season the tops fallover and seed the next years new growth all the while the mother plant are this years crop.
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