Sunday, March 9, 2014

Survival Garden Necessities: Horseradish

The horseradish in winter.
2500 years ago, the story goes, Apollo visited a famous oracle who resided at the Greek city of Delphi. As oracles are wont to do, she did not answer his questions yea or nay, but instead spoke in riddles.

"The radish," she began, "is worth its weight in lead, the beet its weight in silver. But horseradish is worth its weight in gold."

Whether Apollo got his question answered I don't know, but the oracle's advice can be put to good use by the prepper and home gardener today.

Even if you don't enjoy this bitter herb yourself, there are several reasons why it deserves a prominent* place in your survival garden:
  • It's a perennial. That means you plant it once and it is with you forever. Just plant it in a place you won't need for anything else because - wait for it - it's with you forever. You can leave it in the ground until you need it and it will always be there.
  • Others want it. Too many preppers base their plans exclusively on what they expect to need. But a wiser course of action is to include in your plans what others will need and want.  Trade makes good neighbors, and nothing will be more valuable in an SHTF situation than the goodwill of your neighbors.
  • High unit value.  This is a key point which many overlook.  6 or 7 pounds of potatoes can be yours for $3, and it takes a bit of space and work to grow that many.  That same $3 will buy you a single horseradish crown on ebay. 
The ancient Greeks became rich growing high-value crops and trading, a solid model that has been emulated for millennia. Leave a place in your garden for the herb they thought worth its weight in gold.

Horseradish recipes.

Growing Horseradish.

* by which I mean, "out of the way." Horseradish demands no attention at all but an occasional weeding.

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