Five Days of Gardening Goals - Lowering Your Grocery Bill


As we end the new year with goal-setting in mind, let us not forget about our garden goals! Now is the time to start writing out your plans as many of us are on a Christmas break.

I received a couple of gardening catalogs last week, and, I must say, that little gardening itch is back.

Pretty soon, my husband and children will get tired of seeing me browsing over these catalogs, writing, erasing, flipping the pages, writing, erasing, you get the picture!

I love it!  I love to plan, I love to dream, I love to visualize!  I can also get carried away with all of the seed varieties that look intriguing, and end up scratching many off of my list after coming back to reality.

If you have this disease, this gardening disease that consumes you, that makes you visualize a garden that probably will never look that way, an obsession that makes you bite off more than you can chew, then let me share with you some focusing tips!

Yesterday, I talked about gardening for pleasure and how to focus on that particular goal.

Today, I'll share with you some focusing tips on another gardening goal;

Lowering your grocery bill!


If this is where you fit in, read on!

We all want a lower grocery bill, right?  I am amazed at how much prices have increased.  Sad, but true.  So, what we need to do first is figure out what grows the best in your soil.  Hopefully, you have some idea, but, if you don't, just ask your neighbor or some other farmer.

Once you know what grows best, focus on these!  That is the important part.  Write them down in your garden journal or planner.  Remember, if you want a lower grocery bill, you cannot obtain it by trying to grow things that are experimental.  These plants might be beneficial, but usually, they just take up space that could be used for a potential money-saving vegetable.

Now that you have a list of what grows well, it's time to start thinking about how you can use these to lower your grocery bill.  What do you eat a lot of?  Tomatoes?  Cabbage?  Squash?

What always seems to make it's way in your grocery cart?  Lettuce?  Radishes?

Look at your list and pick out the varieties that you could really benefit from.....really.  If you never buy broccoli at the produce section, than growing broccoli is not going to save you money.  Get the picture?

Don't forget about preserving methods.  If you buy a lot of canned tomatoes, grow tomatoes and can them.  If you buy frozen corn, grow corn and freeze it.

Focus!  Focus!  Focus!

Yes, it is overwhelming to look at all of those tempting varieties, but, keep your eye on the prize.  So many gardeners have this same goal, but fail to lower their grocery bill because they lost their focus.  Sometimes, they end up spending more and do not save a dime on groceries.

Once you have picked out the varieties on your list that you buy at the grocery store, it is time to start jotting down your garden layout.  Do you have room for all of these?  If so, great!  If not, then let the weeding process begin, weeding of seed varieties that is.  Start with the least bought vegetable and work your way up.  Hopefully, you won't have to weed out too many.  Also, look at preserving books because they usually tell you how much a certain amount of vegetable will produce.  This will give you an idea of how much to grow.

If you have plenty of room, great!  Just don't overdo it.  Don't plant so many that by just looking out your window wears you out and the thought of canning all of them makes you a litle faint!

Lastly, and if you have the room, plant a different variety of something, just for fun.  Only one or two!  Make this your reward for staying focused on planting only what you need for lowering that grocery bill!

Happy planning!

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8 comments:

  1. Great advice, Susie!
    Love you!
    Dawn

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  2. Good tips for newbies! I have my Fedco catalog already though I haven't had time to look at it. Can't wait for the new gardening season!

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  3. These are great tips :) :) I live on the Central Coast of California and while I live in what's called a "sunbelt" area, we do get a lot of fog from the ocean..so I'd say that our area is more shady cool :) :) I'm going to have to ask my neighbors if they grow anything. I so want to start growing some of my own produce, especially carrots and broccoli. I eat those two a LOT :) :) Love and hugs from the ocean shores of California, Heather :) :)

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  4. Thank you, ladies! Glad you enjoyed the post!

    Barb, Fedco is one seed company I have not heard of. I'll have to check it out!

    Heather, I bet you have optimum growing conditions and probably could grow most anything! I'm not envious;)

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  5. This is what I want to do so badly! We had a large garden when I was less than 5, but I sadly don't remember much of how to. I live in an apartment now, will you be doing some tips for such? I know my area is really really rainy in summer, Alaska is not as full of Snow as most people think!

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  6. WEFA, there are a couple of container vegetable gardening books in my Farm and Garden Bookstore page up top. One of them is called The Vegetable Gardener's Container Bible and it will probably give you more info than you need to get you started on your gardening adventure! Hope this helps!

    Blessings from Indiana!

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  7. Susie, Great post! I love getting out the catalogs! this is what we did last year and the year before. We built cattle panel arches which helped a ton with climbing squashes, cukes, and pole beans...they stay clean and are vastly easier to pick. you might consider using this technique for some things. http://www.deeprootsathome.com/?p=1787

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