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Dear Editor:

We have been prepping as best we can on a tight budget for about a year now. We have also been adamant to warn others about the hard times looming to try to get them to stock food, water, etc… The reply we most often get (after a chuckle, and rolling of the eyes) is, “Well, if the times get bad, we will just go to your house and take your stuff.” That is not the reason I am writing however.

It is time to put in a garden and we are limited on space and good soil. We were thinking about buying about 4 – 5 kiddie pools (the 4-5 ft. round one-piece plastic kind), fill them with good growing soil and plant our garden in them. Then we were thinking about growing tomatoes in big pots, and pole beans against a chain link fence. Do you think the swimming pool garden is a good idea? That might deter some of the rabbits around here too. Guess I could set a live trap for the rabbits and start raising them too, ha ha.

If we do use the swimming pools, would we need to poke holes in the bottoms of them for drainage? Do you think that the radiation levels here in the U.S. is enough to worry about outdoor/open air gardening?

Thanks
“Z”

Dear “Z”,

I think your swimming pool garden is an excellent idea! Yes, I think you should drill drainage holes in the bottom of the pool so that excess water has a way to get out. After all, plants can “drown” too! It sounds like you have a workable plan that utilizes your gardening space quite well. As far as radiation levels, I’m not actually concerned with those. An article in Forbes may be of interest to you and our readers, and a way to find some data that you feel is trustworthy. That article is located at https://blogs.forbes.com/jeffmcmahon/2011/03/28/three-sites-where-you-can-monitor-u-s-radiation-levels/. Personally, I feel outdoor/open air gardening is quite safe for now. Thank you for writing!

The Editor

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Dear Editor,

I recently read “One Second After” and had a question about drinking water (ironically enough, the main topic of today’s email!). The main character uses his pool water as a source of drinking water (and bathing I think) for some time. While obviously not ideal, I can see where keeping the water mildly chlorinated would create potable water for some time. Not to mention you could just boil the water and it would basically remove the chlorine.

We have a pool, and it got me wondering. Would water from a SALT WATER system pool also be potable or would the salt content be too high? I know the salt water system is basically creating its own chlorine, but I also know the water tastes slightly salty. Your thoughts?

Salty

Dear Salty,

As I don’t have a pool and am not familiar with salt water pool systems, I did a little research. Emergency sites that discuss potable water say don’t use salt water unless it’s been distilled. Salt water pool sites state that the level of salt in the water is comparable to that in the human body. However, saline levels in the pool can vary depending on the amount of rainwater your pool gets as well. My thought is that yes, it’s a source of potable water after it has been distilled.

The Editor

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