Fall is such a gorgeous season here in the Midwest, it’s truly my favorite season. So, while I’m crunching colorful leaves beneath my boots and breathing in the crisp autumn air, I am reminded that there are plenty of fall homesteading projects that will need to be done, before the snow starts to fly. Here’s a list of my “16 Fall Homesteading Chores” that I’ll be working on!
Canning and Preserving
Canning and preserving food is one of the most important fall homesteading chores that I do around here!
Homesteading is all about being self-sustaining, is it not?
Getting serious about having enough food put away until the next harvest takes time and planning, but it’s so fulfilling!
Thus, harvesting our home-grown fruits and vegetables, as well as making sure the meat we raised is processed and safely tucked away in our freezer!
In addition to canning, I’m also making use of my Excalibur dehydrator by drying excess produce while it’s at it’s peak of freshness!
Don’t forget to make jams and jellies!
I make extra for teacher gifts, hostess gifts, Christmas baskets and to just share with friends and neighbors!
Unique home-canned foods make for wonderful and interesting Christmas gifts! Set aside time to make these extra special goodies while you have all of your canning equipment out!
Fall is the best time to prepare your soil for next year!
Allowing compost to sit on your garden’s soil all winter long, allows nutrients to seep down and create a microbe-rich environment.
This is the kind of investment you want to make in your future food production!
It’s worth the time and effort to spread your compost before the winter snow starts to fly!
Make this a priority on your fall homestead chore list.
Repair Fences and Gates
One of the most wise things you’ll do in the fall is to inspect all of your fences and gates!
There’s nothing more miserable than to be forced to repair a fence in below-zero temperatures.
Take the time to walk all the way around your property and pastures, looking for weaknesses that need your attention.
Prepare Perennial Beds
By preparing perennial beds, I mean both expanding and protecting your edible perennials before winter.
Fall is the ideal time to split your perennials!
They are dormant and by splitting now, you will have a larger harvest next year with little effort.
Always make sure to protect your perennials by building straw all around them.
While many people purchase their firewood, never assume that you will always be able to do so.
Keep your eyes out for sources of free firewood!
If you heat your home with wood, acquiring firewood is one of the most important fall homestead chores that you’ll do!
Grabbing your chainsaw and showing up after a storm knocks down trees could well score you some nice firewood!
Facebook, Buy Nothing groups and Craigslist are always good sources of free firewood, if you will take the time to look for it.
Help Someone Manage their Woodlot
I would be someone who has a few acres of woods, and wouldn’t mind sharing it with someone who would be willing to bring their chainsaw and help clean up fallen wood.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to folks in your circle of friends and ask if that’s something they might entertain, you just never know!
The National Fire Prevention Association recommends that your fireplace be cleaned and inspected annually.
Don’t take chances with your fireplace and flue!
There’s too much at stake to not inspect every single year! Make sure this fall homestead chore happens!
Insulate Doors and Windows
Don’t wait for the cold temperatures to motivate you to caulk and seal windows and doorways, it’ll be too late then!
Make time to scrape out old caulking that needs replaced, put weather stripping around your doors and stay a lot warmer this winter!
Inventory Winter Gear
Before the winter rush begins, it makes sense to take a look at what you have in terms of winter coats, hats and gloves.
I know that I lose track of what I need from year to year!
Having “farm-worthy” outerwear will make all the difference in the world when you’re cleaning stalls in the snow!
Check out your thrift and discount stores for replacements that you may need.
Cull and Stock Freezer
While my chickens are mostly fed by free-ranging in the spring and summer, the colder months are an entirely different story!
The price of feed continues to go up every year and frankly, I can’t afford to feed old birds who probably are not going to lay much anymore.
Fall is the time to culling those animals who have been raised for meat or have run their course.
Checking and maintaining our generator is one of the most important fall homestead chores!
Don’t wait until you have a power outage to think about maintaining your generator.
Check the oil and make sure you have enough fuel for the winter season.
Go ahead and start it up as well and make sure it’s running well.
I own and love the generator above!
It takes gas or propane and is a work-horse!
Stock up on Candles, Flashlights, Batteries and Blankets
Once again, one never knows when there will be an extended power-outage and it pays huge dividends to be prepared.
Pull out your candles and make sure you have enough matches/lighters.
Check your flashlights and make sure they have fresh batteries!
Stock and Rotate Pantry
My pantry is an asset.
Keeping a well-stocked and rotated pantry cannot be over-emphasized as the way to keep your family fed, regardless of what’s going on in the world.
Weather happens. Lay-offs happen. Illness happens.
Stay ahead of what life throws at us and keep a pantry!
It’s one of the most important fall homestead chores for the well-being of your family!
Make Soap and Candles
I love when the weather cools off, because that means it’s time to be crafty!
If you’ve never made homemade soap or candles, please take a few minutes and check out Brambleberry Soap supplies!
Brambleberry has supplies and instructions for soap, candles, bath bombs, cosmetics and many more DIY personal items.
Plant Greens Near the Back Door
Finally, while you have a little bit more time before the snow flies, plant some salad greens out your back door!
You can plant them in the ground or in a pot, but keep that fresh salad coming while you can!
What’s on YOUR fall homestead chore list?