How to Survive Summer on Your Homestead!
Are you looking for some tips to help you survive summer on the homestead? Homesteading is demanding and in summer it’s difficult to cool off, keep the livestock happy, and stay ahead of the chores! So what’s a busy homesteader to do when the mercury rises?
The most important summer survival tip is making sure everyone is hydrated and no one overheats on sunny afternoons. Try to do demanding chores such as weeding, filling water troughs, mowing, and fixing fence early in the day before the midday heat sets in.
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Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff!
If the lawn has hardly grown this week, don’t worry about mowing. A few weeds aren’t the end of the world. Water your veggies, keep the pets and livestock happy, pick what needs to harvested and freeze it instead of canning when you’re short on time or the house is too hot. Some things just can’t wait, but you can divide the chores up and take breaks to cool down and rehydrate to help you survive summer on the homestead.
My Top 12 Tips to Help You Survive Summer on the Homestead
- Cool off -provide cool water several times a day, turn the sprinkler on for kids and animals, make sure everyone has shade!
- Take a break – Set aside your chores during the hottest part of the day and rehydrate.
- Get up early – work in the cool morning.
- Put a fan in the window – Be sure to use a fan designed for use in the barn.
- Raise animals that are acclimated to hot climates. Read up on the 16 Best Heat Tolerant Chicken Breeds.
- Make cold treats – Ice cream, snow cones, smoothies, and popsicles are all delicious ways to deal with the heat.
- Drink DIY Sports Drink to rehydrate after working up a sweat.
- Use freezer jam recipes or dehydrate produce instead of canning. Use your crockpot to cook meals on the porch instead of heating the house up. Freeze fruit to make jam in winter.
- Made in the shade – If you don’t have shade trees, set up a shade tent, tarp, or patio umbrella. Awnings can lower the temperature in the house.
- Make your own non-toxic Cooling Eucalyptus Mint Body Spray
- Dump out water troughs and fill with clean water to prevent mosquito outbreaks.
- Hang fly strips and fly traps to keep these pests to a minimum. Wipe down livestock with fly repellent to prevent bites and flies from laying their eggs on wounds, etc.
Plan Ahead for Heat Waves and Other Weather
Watch the weather forecast for your area and plan for heat, humidity, and storms. Having extra water troughs on hand can be a lifesaver for your homestead animals. Pick up extra fly spray and fly strips at the farm supply store. You may even want to stock up on feed ahead of time to reduce your trips to town and prepare for nasty weather. You’ll find it easier to survive summer if you don’t have to make extra trips or worry about your livestock and pets.
Check out these tips on How to Keep Chickens Cool in the Heat and Collect Eggs All Summer!
Freeze fresh fruit for making smoothies, or get ingredients for homemade ice cream. Plan a picnic to a park or beach on days when the sweltering heat is expected. This is a great way to take a break.
With the beautiful weather of summer comes the return of those annoying flies. Rather than try to attack them with chemicals, consider making your own DIY fly trap to keep them at bay. Check out this article about homemade fly traps to create sticky flypaper or a glass jar trap to say goodbye to pesky bugs forever.
Fill plastic containers with water to freeze ahead for adding to livestock watering dishes. This will save energy for running the freezer (by keeping it full) and you can pull a container of ice out quickly for the livestock, a cooler for your picnic, or put in your swimming pool to cool down.
Homesteading is a lot of work and you can’t just sit inside in the air-conditioned comfort of your home all summer! However, if you plan ahead and make smart choices, you can reduce your workload and time spent out in the heat this summer. 🙂
What are your favorite tips for surviving summer on the homestead? Did you read something helpful here? Share in the comments!
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In addition to writing for her own websites, Lisa has contributed articles to The Prepper Project and Homestead.org.
The author lives outside of Chicago with her husband, son, 2 dogs, 1 cat, and a variety of poultry.