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Best Ways To Save Money With Edible Gardening

Posted by Shawn Ellis on 5/15/2012 to Best Fruit and Vegetable Gardening Tips
List of Best Ways to Save Money With EDIBLE Gardening


1. Plant The Most Cost Effective  Fruits, Veggies, Nuts, Herbs you can that you and your family will also eat a lot of. Some varieties of food are so much cheaper grown than bought. If you plant perennials or save the seeds from annuals you an save even more money.

 -The Most Cost Effective Vegetables
Tomatoes (Recommend Cherry Grape Small Tomatoes to Maximize Production from a single plant, especially if you like to eat them for snacks)
Peppers (Sweet or Hot, and recommend Petite Sweet Snack Bonnie Peppers for maximum production)
Potatoes(Red Potatoes harvest the earliest, followed by Yukon Gold and Russet)
Lettuce (Any kind especially perennial varieties such as Kale)
Asparagus (Perennial)
Broccoli
Cabbage
Peas
Onions
 
-  The Most Cost Effective Fruits (All Perennials)
Strawberries
Blueberries
Blackberries
Figs
Cherries
Apples
Pears
Plums
Peaches
All other fruit trees

The Most Cost Effective Herbs
Just about all of the any them are cost effective, but especially any that are Perrenials such as Sweet Mint.


2. Use household items for items in Gardening

Items To Plant Seeds In
-Toilet Paper Roll or Paper Towel Cardboard Tubes Cut In Half
- Clear Plastic Dixie Cups


Items for Using as an Indoor Greenhouse for plants and seeds
-Rotisserie Chicken Container
-Plastic Cake or Cupcake Containers

Indoor Compost Containers ( Drill holes into the side bottom and top and  put a plastic tray or newspaper underneath the Container, You can store it under the kitchen sink. Some examples of what you can use as the containers are below

-Large Plastic Coffee Containers with a Lid
-Large Protein Shake Plastic Containers with a Lid
-Any other Large Dark and not clear Plastic or Metal Container With a Lid and which you can drill holes into

Landscape Fabric Alternatives:
-Newspapers or Plastic Bags such as Mulch Bags

Item to Use as Stakes for Tomatoes, Peppers, Vines, and other plants
-Wooden poles, Curtain Rods, bamboo poles that you may have or can obtain for free or easily

Items to Use to Build Raised Garden Beds or Borders for Your Garden to keep the Mulch in
-Wood from a playground set no longer needed, or other wood no longer needed around the house, rocks,

3. Save any Pots you get from buying any plants at a store or nursery to be re-used later to plant new seeds in

4. Use a Drip Soaker Hose or Drip Irrigation PVC pipe to water your garden so that the water gets only to your plants and avoids getting on the leaves and also saves money

5. If you have a water hose timer, you can use this to only water it as long as you want and save money

6. Get a Rain barrel to use to  rain water your garden instead of paying for water.

7. Use old newspapers or mulch bags instead of buying landscape fabric to prevent weeds.

8. Use, save and replant your seeds every year from heirloom plants or non-hybrid plants inside a Kilner Glass Jar in a dark cool place instead of buying seeds. You can put seeds first into small ziplock bags or envelopes and then put them into the Kilner Jar and be sure to label them.  Some plants may do better  and grow quicker if you can afford to buy them as plants instead of seeds such as tomatoes, fruit plants and trees. For these plants, and bushes, you do not need to have the largest ones but keep in mind that trees can take years to grow large enough to produce fruit instead of months.

For Potatoes, if you have any that you harvest in the fall you an store some as seed potatoes for next year's spring planting. This requires a Root Cellar or Keeping them in a Cool Dark place between 35 to 40 F.

9. Always get the Concentrated form of any Organic Insecticide, Fungicide Spray or other, because you will be able to make a lot more spray with it than the already mixed kind

10. Be sure to check your garden daily or every other day for any signs of problems like pests or diseases and spray your plants with an Organic Neem Oil based Fungicide and Insecticide Spray every so often to prevent these problems.

11. Borrow any tools, supplies, seeds, plants, mulch or other materials you don't have from neighbors or try to get them for free at http://www.Cragslist.org in The For Sale>Free  Section or http://www.freecycle.org/

12. Cover any plants with a tarp or plastic at night if there is a frost advisory but be sure to remove it in the morning to protect newly planted plants in the spring

13. Start out small, and as you get more experience, expand your garden. You can save some money this way as you learn more about gardening

14. Grow the right plants in the right soil, and in the right location with the correct amount of spacing, sun. and water frequency.

15. Mulch your garden to prevent weeds from forming and help retain moisture.

16. Check to see which fruits and vegetables grow best in your USDA zone and state by researching. Usually your county extension office or a University in your state will have a list of these.

17. To protect your plants from birds and most animals the best way is to put a bird net over the plants, bushes, trees, available at your local hardware store. Birds will eat tomatoes, blueberries, strawberries, most any other berries, fruit. Rabbits, dear and other animals can also eat some of these things. For bushes and some plants it is better to have a structure to support the bird netting so that the bird netting does not allow the berries or plants to become stuck in the net. There will be another blog coming soon discussing the best and cheapest way to build this structure. Until you have this structure, bird netting can be draped over large Tomato Planters, or over 4 Large 6 foot tall wooden poles or bamboo poles in a square or rectangle. You can use bricks, landscape pins or other heavy things to keep the netting secured to the ground.
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