“Tell me more about this root cellar. How does it work? Does it really keep vegetables longer than a fridge?”
Well, it’s this and that Thursday time, so here goes…
Root cellars work well if you have the right terrain. Here in the mountains they are usually dug into the mountain side or a hillside. They are used to store root vegetables.
We also have spring houses with water running through them. They were used to keep the cows milk and butter before refrigeration was available.
The most important part of a root cellar is that it have a dirt floor, not cement. Surrounded by earth it stays a pretty constant temperature and will keep apples, potatoes, turnips, carrots and the like from freezing or getting too warm on a warmer day. However, when the weather gets warm they will not really save your fruits and vegies.
It is too warm in the low country of the southeastern U.S. for a root cellar to keep food from spoiling. Also, the low country is just that…low, near sea level and there are no hills and mountains to dig into. Remember being surrounded by earth is key.
I don’t know if the root cellar would work in the northern states where temperatures are below freezing for long periods. Much of this land is also flat plains…and they tell me the “freeze line” is deep enough for a man to stand up straight and still be below the surface.
My Humans go to the local orchard and buy several bushels of apples to last them through the winter. They also buy potatoes and turnips from locals.
Bushels are too large a quantity to keep in a fridge.
Y’all come back now!