Grow Vegetables. Save Money!
Grocery prices are sky rocketing and supply chain issues are leaving many wondering not only “Can I afford groceries?” but also “Will the store even have what I want?” As a result, more and more people are turning to vegetable gardening to save money and ensure a plentiful supply of fresh, healthy vegetables.
To give you some idea of potential savings: One tomato plant typically yields 10 – 30 lbs. of tomatoes (depending on variety). At a chain store’s current price of $2.79/lb.* and a 15lb. yield you have $41.85 worth of tomatoes. A 4-pack of plants will cost $2.99. That equals a savings of $164.41 off of four tomato plants. You can see savings will add up quick.
Keep in mind vegetable gardens should always be planted in full sun (6-8 hours a day). A 600 square-foot (20 x 30 Ft.) vegetable garden has the potential to yield $625-725 worth of vegetables. Initial costs for plants/seeds will be $80-110. A savings of $600+ and that doesn’t factor in all the health benefits (mental and physical) of growing a garden!
Here’s some quick tips for gardening to save money:
- Grow expensive grocery store vegetables:
If you’re limited on space stick to the vegetables that cost the most. Tomatoes, Squash, Zucchini, Peppers, and Cucumbers are typically the most expensive in the grocery store. The more space you have, the greater variety of vegetables you can grow.
- Herbs offer quick savings:
Get one to three pickings off your herb plant and you’ve already broken even. Herbs are easy to preserve by drying and saving for use year around! Added bonus: some herbs are perennials that come back every year!
- Keep your garden simple:
A garden planted directly in the ground provides the best yield. If you’re limited in space raised garden or container gardens are an option. Don’t let space limit you – you can grow a lot in containers. You don’t need any fancy containers or fertilizers. One thing to watch out for is deer (and other animals) … deer fencing may be worth the investment.
- Throw your kitchen scraps into the garden:
Kitchen scraps are a great source of nutrients for gardens. Obviously, fruit and vegetable scraps are great. Egg shells are a great source of calcium (an important nutrient for tomato plants). In general, you should limit the amount of fertilizer you purchase and use… too much and a garden will spend all it’s time growing and very little time producing vegetables.
- Preserve what you don’t or can’t use:
At times your garden may produce more than you can eat or give away. Don’t let the extras go to waste. Freezing, canning, and drying are all excellent way to preserve vegetables, herbs, and fruits for use year around.
- Be generous, give some vegetables away:
As they say “what goes around, come around.” If you have extras give your friends and neighbors some vegetables. Look out for those that aren’t able to grow a garden themselves. You’ll be surprised how many cakes, pies, and cookies show up on your door step!
Now you know the basics of saving money by growing your own vegetables! Feel free to explore Gary’s Garden Center’s website for more in-depth info on growing vegetables. Visit Gary’s Garden Center in store and we’re always happy to answer questions! We Help, You Grow!
*Organic on the Vine Red Tomatoes $2.79/lb. as of 3/13/2023