Ice box pickles – You can make all the pickle slices you can handle in under 5 minutes

Without a doubt Ice box pickles are the lazy man’s pickle. These are also known as “refrigerator pickles” as you just put all the ingredients into a container and throw them in the fridge. Pretty much all you do is mix the ingredients together and toss them into the fridge. The pickles I made this year were scary good. I add a bunch of fresh jalapeno seeds to give them a nice bite.

No cooking or canning

If you are super lazy you can use a powdered mix such as This one. I used one of these mixes last year and was pleased with the results.

First of all, to make this process go even faster get yourself a good Mandolin Slicer. These things are scary sharp so be careful. You could slice a huge pile of cucumbers into perfectly even slices in about 3 minutes with this. I’m telling you if you take nothing else from this article, do yourself a favor and get one of these things.

What I do is throw all of my ingredients into a large plastic container with a screw top lid… after about 3 days in the fridge you have some incredible pickles.

I’m not sure what the storage life of the icebox pickle is, I generally keep them in the fridge and compulsively eat them every time I am in the vicinity so this hasn’t proved to be an issue for me as of yet.

Here are a few different recipes. I like to also throw in some hot elements like red pepper flakes, diced jalapenos and seeds… it’s up to you!

Episode 3: Eduardo Avila from boar hunting with a knife

On today’s episode I had the pleasure of talking with Eduardo Avila from He shares with us the story of 2 hunting trips he went on where he attempted to hunt boar with a knife. This is actually quite a popular activity now. Trained dogs hunt down the boars and corner them, the dogs are wrestle the hogs to the ground by their ears which allows the hunter to then come in for the kill.

Today’s Resources

Mushroom Collecting 101: The foolproof four

Note: Some wild mushrooms are poisonous, and they may resemble edible species. Eating them may make you sick or kill you. It is your responsibility to identify any wild food with 100% certainty before you eat it.

I’m very much interested in harvesting wild mushrooms, however mushrooms are scary business! Eating the wrong mushroom can make you severely ill or in some cases kill you! In fact there is even a mushroom called “The Angel of Death“.

So how can you get started into mushrooming without worrying about killing yourself?

Well first off all I would suggest locating your local mushrooming club if there is one around. Your good friend Google should know where they are.

The best place to start with mushrooming is without a doubt “The Foolproof four”. These 4 mushrooms are named because they are very easy to identify and they do not have many poisonous look alikes.

The foolproof four are:

Puffball Mushroom
Puffball Mushroom (beautifulcataya)
Chicken of the woods
Chicken of the woods ( minicooper93402)
Morel (melystu
Chanterelle (ivanteage)


Mushrooming Skills I want to learn

  • Learning your local areas and knowing where to look
  • Learning to identify tree types. Knowing which type of trees are growing is one of the most important aspects of determining which mushrooms you are likely to find
  • Spore Prints: The color and pattern of the mushroom spores are the safest way to properly identify a mushroom.

I’ll be joining and attending local mushroom events and will of course keep the blog up to date with my progress.

Attack of the Stink bugs! How to control Stink bugs in the garden.

Stink bugs, sometimes known as “shield bugs”, have overrun Pennsylvania and much of the east coast. The pesky insects not only leave an unpleasant odor but are devastating to gardens and agriculture.

Apparently the bugs arrived to us from the orient via shipping containers.

Surprise, surprise! The explosive growth of stink bug populations seems to be linked to mono-culture agriculture practices and our current suburban trend of having ultra-clean landscape design with no native herbs or plantings. (Source)

The article goes on to point out how the use of GMO crops has drastically reduced the need for cotton farmers to use pesticides, which also accounts for the rise in population of the stink bug.

How do we get rid of these stink bugs? Well so far the only method I have found that seems to work is to vacuum them up with a shop vac. I’ve scoured the web for organic methods of stink bug control and here is what I have come up with:

Bottom line is it seems the best defense from these pests is plant diversity. The same things which control these pests work to control most garden threats, and that is creating a natural pest free environment by planting a wide array of plantings.

Have you effectively controlled these pests? Let’s hear what has worked for you in the comments.

Episode 2: Build your own electric car… CHEAP!

In this week’s podcast we learn how to build our own electric car cheap. Ben Nelson from shares with us his experience of building his own EV (electric vehicle) with little more than ambition and a library card.

Ben also sells a great instructional 2 disc DVD set which goes over all of the details of building your own electric vehicle. If an EV conversion is something you have ever considered then Ben Nelson is the man to talk to.

How to build a PVC green house

I just finished listening to Episode 526 – Time for fall garden overdrive of The Survival Podcast. Personally I have been slacking BIG TIME on my fall garden. I’m still harvesting Kentucky wonder pole beans like it’s my job, but that’s about all that is left of my garden except for a few tomatoes.

Well that was just the kick in the pants I needed. I’ve got all the materials laying around to build myself a nice little green house. This will be the subject of a series of upcoming videos so I hope you will stay tuned.

Here is a great PVC greenhouse I found on youtube and just based on the search results there are just a TON of other designs out there. Do you have a favorite low budget greenhouse design? Post it in the comments.

Here is a link to a great resource I found on this topic:

PVC Hoophouse/Greenhouse