Surviving Hard Times

Surviving Hard Times

It's one thing to listen to doom and gloom about food and fertilizer shortages, skyrocketing prices, the cost of living, or your job being outsourced overseas or eliminated due to automation. It's another thing to hear practicable, immediately actionable advice from experts who can help you reduce the fear, anxiety, and burden of these problems. Tune in now to the Surviving Hard Times Podcast with Richard Jacobs.


March 30, 2023 39 min

Can sound frequencies kill cancer – effectively acting as a cure? Dr. Bill McGraw, a prolific research scientist and the author of Aluminum Detox: An Easy Solution and Mercury: The Ultimate Truth and Chronic Disease certainly thinks so…


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How do you successfully set up a self-sustainable homestead – especially in these trying times? While there are many approaches to this lifestyle, the individuals who do it well are setting an example for those of us eager to learn for ourselves…

In this episode, we sit down with Gary Dickenson from the YouTube channel Baltic Homesteaders to discuss his experien...

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With the instability of the modern world, subjects like alternative therapy and psychedelics can seem too nebulous to consider. But what if they actually offer distinct clarity that could change our perspective on society and human consciousness as we know it?

In this episode, we connect with Jahan Khamsehzadeh, the author...

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Without clean water, our society would crumble – so what are we doing to deal with the effects of water pollution? Gary Conley, an expert in hydrology, pollution dynamics, and applied math joins the podcast to discuss his approach to tackling water pollution problems.

Gary is the Chief Scientist at 2NDNATURE, a company that designs and builds software to simplif...

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In this episode, we sit down with Zilfina Rubio Ames, an Assistant Professor and Small Fruit Extension Specialist at the University of Georgia’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. With a focus on blueberries and other small fruits, Zilfina’s primary research goal is to improve berry production systems – specifically their yield and quality.


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What can mangroves tell us about carbon sequestration? Today, Dr. Robert Twilley joins the podcast to share his thoughts on this question and other important climate-related topics…

Dr. Twilley has been involved in carbon research for decades, and currently serves as the Executive Director of Louisiana Sea Grant College. Additionally, he is a Professor in the De...

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Are you wondering how you can strengthen your chess skills, but don’t know where to start? Richard Jacobs, the host of the Surviving Hard Times Podcast, takes the time in this episode to discuss how he has improved his chess game – and how it has also impacted his personal and professional life…

Throughout his lifetime of playing chess, Richard has distilled his...

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Dr. Rachel Rudolph joins the podcast today to discuss her work with high tunnels and vegetable crop production. As an Extension Vegetable Specialist, Dr. Rudolph lends her knowledge of plant science to the University of Kentucky’s Department of Horticulture as an Assistant Extension Professor. 

Dr. Rudolph is interested in developing alternative approaches to ma...

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Can beekeeping enrich your life and the environment around you? Tanya Phillips, a Director at Texas Honey Bee Farm based in Austin, Texas would certainly say so…

Tanya joins the podcast today to discuss her work as a beekeeper and educator. Her dedication to the preservation and cultivation of bee colonies has led her to not only be a central figure at Texas Hon...

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When you head to the grocery store's produce section, what are you looking for? The ripest bananas? The juiciest tomatoes? The largest oranges?

Whatever your answer, you might be surprised to learn what dictates the taste, ripeness, and nutritional quality of fruits and vegetables.

Angelos Deltsidis shares interesting details of his unique area of expertise: post-harvest ripening.  

Tune in to learn:

  • What function ethylene ser...
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Joining us in this episode is Dr. Wolfgang Smith, a mathematician, physicist, philosopher of science, and metaphysician. Born in 1930, Dr. Smith developed his understanding of the world through the lens of philosophy and physics. Over the years, his fascination with these subjects has enabled him to apply a critical perspective to some of the world’s biggest questions.

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Cover crops have been around for over 10,000 years. It wasn’t until about 50 years ago that they started being replaced with chemical fertilizers, which many farmers saw as a more modern, efficient method.

But the tide may be turning again – back to the (cover crop) roots. And this time, there may be loads of economic opportunity and environmental sustainability to gain.

Press play to explore:

  • Tips for growing cash crops that ...
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Joining us today to discuss dormancy and cold hardiness in plants is Al Pacheco Kovaleski, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Horticulture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Since connecting with the UW–Madison faculty in March 2021, Al has enjoyed applying his research in plant cold hardiness to the freezing Wisconsin winters…

Al grew up in one of...

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Today, we sit down with Rob Avis, the Owner, Lead Instructor, and Engineer at Verge Permaculture. Rob is an expert in regenerative business and eco-entrepreneurship, and he is using his skills to lead the next wave of permaculture education – covering everything from building science to agroecology.

In this episode, you will uncover:

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Wild rice isn’t just uniquely delicious: it’s highly nutritious and takes a lot of careful work to grow. 

Learn the ins and outs of breeding and cultivating wild rice in Minnesota from Jennifer Kimball, Assistant Professor in the Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics at the University of Minnesota.

Tune in to explore:

  • Environmentally responsible practices in wild rice breeding and cultivation
  • The purpose and importance of ...
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Human health benefits, soil cleaning, easy growing, and more … professor of plant breeding and genetics at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Ismail Dweikat, shares his knowledge on the wonders of the hemp plant, traditional plant breeding, plant genetics, and more.

Tune in to learn:

  • The desirable traits of wild hemp that Dweikat focuses on breeding into additional crops
  • A unique characteristic of hemp that allows it to clean...
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Mother of nine and homesteader since 1992, Dawn Gallop, returns to the show to share more tips, tricks, and indispensable knowledge about homesteading, including greenhouse gardening in small spaces and using high tunnels.

Press play to discover:

  • When and why to use shade cloths to protect crops
  • The difference between a greenhouse and a high tunnel
  • How to avoid salt and other mineral buildups in high tunnels
  • Growing tomatoes, ...
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If you had the opportunity to innovate your farm, would you take it? The challenges that come with 21st-century agriculture are very unique, and inventive minds like Jonathan Dysinger are committed to innovating this process for both small and large farmers alike… 

Jonathan is the Owner and CEO of Farmers Friend, a company that develops tools and supplies to make small farms more efficient and profitable. With years of experience i...

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Where you live affects the quality of your food and water. A big reason for this has to do with watershed hydrology – the way water moves across agricultural landscapes.

Matthew Helmers’ work revolves around this topic, and he shares his knowledge today.

Tune in to explore:

  • What tile drainage is, and how it improves crop health and production
  • Why slowing water movement across the land is critical for crops and can decrease pol...
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Nitrogen fertilizers are widely used in crop production around the world, but how does soil react to this treatment? Expert soil scientist Richard L. Mulvaney joins the podcast today to discuss his research looking into this question, and others like it…

As a Professor of Soil Fertility at the University of Illinois, Richard is deeply involved in Illinois’s agricultural field. With three degrees in soil science, he has focused his ...

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