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Grow Your Own Veggies and Save Moolah

by retirebyforty on August 19, 2011 · 32 comments

in fun stuffs, saving tips

Welcome to another edition of Blog Swap a collaborative endeavor by members of the Yakezie Network, the world’s largest network of personal finance and lifestyle blogs. Each blogger writes on the same topic. Today’s topic is, “Best Go Green Method to Save Money” After you finish this article, please stop by my site, Everything Finance to read my idea – Go Green Saving by living in a smaller home!

grow your own veggies

There are plenty of reasons to get your hands a little dirty planting a vegetable garden this year. And one really juicy reason is the rising cost of food, which makes some of those super healthy and tasty vegetables pretty expensive at the supermarket.

If supermarket prices put you off – and let’s be honest, they do – why not start to grow your own vegetables? If you’re already a fan of gardening and your garden will allow it, plant some tomatoes, plant some, erm… potatoes, plant some aubergines and get cooking!

Growing your vegetables is also a great way for getting the kids interested in vegetables also! Get them to do as much as possible, refer to them as their vegetables from planting the seeds to actually eating the veg.

Gardening is good exercise, and when you’re sat at the table with all your family, you’ll be glad you planted the veg.

Tomatoes can cost you over $5 a pound depending on where you live. They grow well in most climates during summer months, and taste so much better when they come straight from your garden. You can also yield a bunch to can or preserve to get you through the winter, too.

Ironically, herbs, which are very easy to grow at home, can cost you the most at the supermarket. Those little $5 plastic containers of fresh basil, dill and chives, etc, don’t even need an outdoor garden. You can grow most of them on a kitchen windowsill. Plus, they’re decorative and make your home smell delicious.
Artichokes are so incredible on the summer grill, but they’re not cheap. Just one can cost $5! These deliciously fragrant members of the rose family are also a beautiful and healthy addition to any garden.

Those big, juicy summer melons and rich fall squash are so tasty and versatile, but because of their size, they can end up being quite pricey at a per pound cost, costing more than $10 for one watermelon or pumpkin. Try rotating them in the same space in your garden for nutrient-rich seasonal favorites.

Fruits, especially organic ones, can be costly register rings, but they’re such an important part of a healthy diet! An economical and tasty way to have your own variety of fruits at home is by planting dwarf fruit trees. Berries are also easy to grow and a super tasty summer treat.

Nothing is worse than walking away with bags and bags of groceries and then watching over the next few days as your produce begins to brown or mold in the fridge before you even get the chance to eat it. For this reason, simply being able to pick your own produce from your garden helps eliminate waste. Another basic money saving benefit is that once you buy seeds and soil your expenses are covered. This cuts down on your monthly food budget and you won’t have to face the aggravation of watching expensive produce go bad.

retirebyforty’s thought: We love our local farmer market and they have great products, but the price is just too high. It’s a good thing we have a community garden and we can get fresh lettuce, carrot, cilantro, green beans, and more as needed. It’s a great way to save money and eat locally. Unfortunately, I spotted a bunch of aphids on the onions and chives a few days ago! YUK!!! I hate aphids! I’ll notify our head gardener and see what we can do about them. :(

{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

Janett Brown August 19, 2011 at 2:10 am

I have a better idea. Since the prices of vegetables and fruits are so high, why don’t you get a small farm in your retirement? It will be great to do something that you like and earn some money from it. :)

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retirebyforty August 19, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Farming is hard work! I don’t know if I can do it or want to do it. It seems most small farms are in trouble, aren’t they?

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SB @ One Cent At A Time August 19, 2011 at 4:51 am

I am living in an apartment, garden is a distant dream but I do have some potted tomato plants, but that’s too less to even call frugal :)

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retirebyforty August 19, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Does tomatoes grow well on the balcony? We tried once, but I think we needed a bigger pot. We are going with herbs on the balcony – mints, chives, dill, and oregano.

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Niki August 19, 2011 at 5:28 am

I am so happy with my garden this year. I am very excited to do it all again next year. It is worth it.

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retirebyforty August 19, 2011 at 1:00 pm

Your veggies look great this year!

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Hunter @ Financially Consumed August 19, 2011 at 6:00 am

I love fresh vegetables, and an herb garden close to my kitchen. Great post.

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Kevin @ Thousandaire.com August 19, 2011 at 7:41 am

I may be frugal, but not patient enough to grow my own food. I don’t like veggies anyway! That’s the beauty of money; I don’t have to grow my own food!

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retirebyforty August 19, 2011 at 1:01 pm

I take it you don’t shop at Whole Food. :)

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krantcents August 19, 2011 at 1:06 pm

We grow our own herbs, but we don’t get much sun or do we much room to have a vegetable garden.

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Jen @ Master the Art of Saving August 19, 2011 at 9:10 pm

I heard that dandelions keep bugs away from fruits and veggies. I’ve never tried it before, so I’m not sure if it really works or not.

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Moneycone August 21, 2011 at 4:18 am

Your point on herbs is a very good one. We’ve had some success, but this extreme heat isn’t helping!

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101 Centavos August 22, 2011 at 3:10 am

Nice article, EV. Herbs especially are easy to grow and provide the best bang for the buck. You can’t hardly keep down thyme, rosemary and sage, and basil will re-seed itself for the next season. Cannellini beans with a light sage and fresh tomato sauce are delicious!
@ RB40…. for aphids, you’ll need to attract beneficial insects like ladybugs or lacewings. A good way is to interplant plants and herbs the flowers act as attractants. Do a Google search for “flowers that attract ladybugs or lacewings” and you’ll get plenty of results. Or, you could try biological warfare by spraying with Neem oil.

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retirebyforty August 22, 2011 at 3:53 pm

I tried the oil on my balcony last year. It killed a lot of aphids, but next spring they came back. I threw out the soil and started over this year. It was much better, but we still had aphids on the dill. I dug it up and threw it out and haven’t had anymore problem.

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20'sFinances August 24, 2011 at 1:28 pm

I think growing your own vegetables is a great idea. I currently rent an apartment, so I am limited to what I can do. But, my wife and I were able to pot plants in our backyard and grow some tomatoes, cucumbers, and herbs. Retireby40, I agree that the local farmer’s market does seem like a lot of money, but if you think about the health problems you will have later by eating a lot of genetically engineered or produced food, it may be worth the extra dollars (that is, if you can’t or don’t want to grow it yourself).

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retirebyforty August 24, 2011 at 2:14 pm

We live in a condo and we have a community garden that we can plant in. I also grow herbs and a few other small plants on the balcony. I like container plants, it’s much easier to deal with than a whole garden. You have a point about the farmer market.

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Huile alimentaire July 20, 2012 at 6:15 am

If you’re already a fan of gardening and your garden will allow it, plant some tomatoes, plant some, erm… potatoes, plant some aubergines and get cooking!

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Acoperire piscina January 17, 2013 at 7:24 am

Good tips. It worked for me just fine.

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