Wish you could start a vegetable garden but don’t know where to start? or, have you tried before but have failed or gotten stuck and given up labelling yourself the green reaper??
Well over the next 4 weeks, I am going to show you how to stop making excuses and easily learn the skills you need to grow nutritious, organic fruit, vegetables, flowers and salad leaves fit for your families table.
Each week we will look at excuses you may have to not to start growing vegetables.
- No Space? No Problem!
- No Time? No Problem!
- How to make you’re garden work for you!
Budget friendly ways to grow your own is Part one of the “Grow Your Own Vegetables, The -No Excuse” Series
If you would like to stop making excuses and get stuck in and start straight away, you can take our Vegetable Gardening For Beginner’s Course right now.
A new growing season is about to start, the soil is warming up and the buds and trees are swelling and thinking about bursting open.
You’d love to try growing something especially with the kids but you don’t want to mess it up, waste money and waste your time.
But with a new year comes a fresh start. We all want to make changes to our lives so why not let growing your own vegetables be one of them?
Growing your own, ticks all the boxes for any of your goals, giving you;
-Fitness and a healthy lifestyle,
-Nutritious food which doesn’t cost a fortune,
-More fresh air and activities the whole family can enjoy together.
-Encouragement to save food miles, reduce plastic and recycle more waste into the garden. Thus feeding your soil and eventually you and your family.
Maybe you have tried to grow some thing in the garden and failed, everything you touch curls up and dies?
There will be more than a few of you who like to think they have a brown thumb, that they just can’t grow ANYTHING!
Do you even kill house plants?
Have you nurtured a tomato plant, spent weeks caring for its every need, only to have it turn black and melt before your eyes before you ever get to taste a ripe fruit?
Guess what, that wasn’t your fault! That was an airborne virus that you had no knowledge or way to protect from. I have grown my own vegetables for almost 30 years and sometimes even my tomatoes fall victim to this blight.
Have you spent a fortune on the right compost, seeds and all the fancy gadgets and never manage to get even 1 little seedling to survive?
This takes a bit of practise to get the right equipment, and temperatures etc. but it is super simple when you have a tiny bit of knowledge and for a lot less money that you think.
Or, have you given space over to vegetables in your garden with the dream of growing and eating amazing organic vegetables with your family, but your baby seedlings were eaten by slugs or taste worse than anything you can buy in a store?
A few early failed attempts doesn’t mean you can’t do it, It just means you need a little information, a few ideas and a sprinkling of magic dust (Only kidding!)
We all have to start somewhere, and if you don’t have an ancestor to guide you then let me remind you of where you are, Growing Healthy Kids is here to help you raise healthy, inquisitive kids by growing healthy food right in your garden.
What better way to teach your kids to try, try, and try again, than for them to see you doing it.
Why not learn this important life skill together!!
I’m a mum, just like you, I have failed more times than I can count but I kept going, I kept asking questions, working out where I went wrong and trying again. AND YOU CAN TO!
Too much of our lives are consumed by screens, stuff, work and moving through everyday trying to make it to the end, but we need to stop and have time to breath, to learn and ‘grow’ as people, parents, wives and friends.
This is why I love being outdoors, in the garden, having kids made it so much more important that;
- I feed my family and my husband a fresh nutritious diet,
- That I save money on groceries to help pay for the things my family would need,
- And that I made space in my life to be outdoors, this keeps me healthy in my mind body and soul (yeah ok cheesy but true!). Hearing the birds sing, digging my hands in the soil, and feeling nature around me makes me a better mum, wife and a happier person.
Digging your hands in the soil has actually proved to have antidepressant and beneficial effects, Check out this article from Gardening Know How for more information.
So, if you have always wanted to grow something or if you’ve already tried and failed.
Now is the time for a fresh start, to try again and this time make it work, whether you grow in a pot or a plot!
Stop making those same excuses and start this year with a new goal, a new belief in your heart that YOU. CAN. DO . THIS!
Budget Friendly Ways To Grow Your Own Vegetables – From The What’s Your Excuse Series
Excuse = It costs too much to grow your own vegetables!!
Yes, you could go to town and really spend every penny on the latest growing technology.
But if your a mum like me with no time, money or space then you have no room for tech in your life, and isn’t there enough of this anyway in every other aspect of life.
I prefer the back to basics approach of getting your hands in the soil, and being at peace with the natural rhythm of the seasonal calendar.
Back when our parents, grand parents and beyond had to grow food to feed themselves they had nothing but hard work and knowledge from their parents and relatives.
We have lost that connection to the land, but it’s time to reconnect! In any small way we can.
Let’s do it for our kids! budget friendly ways to grow your own
The Best Budget Friendly Tip is To Start small:
You don’t have to start with a full size allotment. Just start small, one thing at a time.
It could be a pot of pea shoots on the patio for salads, or a hanging basket on the side of the shed full of strawberry plants.
Reuse and recycle:
Nowadays, we don’t know how to be thrifty, to reuse items from everyday life to help us in the garden. We need to change that attitude and be willing to step back from the ready-made generation and think for ourselves again.
You don’t have to buy a hundred bags of compost, just start your own compost bin to help feed your soil.
Council departments were selling one like this. It’s small and compact enough to fit in most small gardens,
Don’t buy in ready to plant seedlings, instead try to grow from seed.
You get thousands on seeds in a packet and it will keep you in fresh vegetables for years.
Save money on tools:
There is a myriad of tools for every job possible but you can save a huge amount of money if you beg borrow and rehome some tools. Charity shops are a great place to look for quirky tools.
Ask family and friends for a loan or if they have any spares.
If you do have to buy a few tools check out this post to find out the ones you really need
Budget Friends Ways To Save Money On Seeds:
- Try join a local seed swap or a site like seedswap.org.uk and swap excess seeds for other varieties.
- Buy a vegetable garden magazine like ‘Grow Your Own’ who regularly give away 10 packets of seeds for the price of the magazine ( usually around £5) and you get some knowledge.
- Don’t buy expensive fertilizer, Make your own liquid feeds. This post from Homegrownfun.com has some fun and frugal ideas The simplest version of this is to store all the weeds you have picked out of the soil or go collect some from a neighbour or a local park ( be careful they haven’t been sprayed with any chemicals) chop them up in the pail and fill with water to cover the weeds After a few weeks this water will turn brown and the leaves will have dissolved into the water, water this soup down to the colour of weak tea and feed to your plants. There are many other recipes which can offer extra benefits but the best bit is they are all free.
- Another way to cut the expense down but you only want to grow a few little things is to grow vegetables you love but are expensive to buy.
Potatoes are cheap to buy and the taste when you grow your own is similar ( although there are hundreds of varieties that each have their own flavour) so if your stuck for money these would be a waste of finances.
However, growing something like a courgette, which can be costly to buy, but 1 plant can give your 20 fruits and keep you going all summer.
Lettuce seeds come in packs of 1000+ and each one can be a new lettuce, they’re quick to grow, small in size and tasty so these would be a good start.
Peas and beans are always on my list as there is nothing better than eating a pea pod straight off the vine.
If you’re trying to get kids into the garden and eat what they grow you wont find it easier than with freshly picked sweet pea pods.
These aren’t cheap to buy and have a starchy taste from sitting on the shelf for too long. However, growing them yourself and oh my what a difference!!
- Simply soak some dried peas in water overnight, then sow them in a 12″ pot of soil.
- Press the seeds down to a depth of 2 cm and cover them over.
- Give your seeds something to climb up
I like to use bamboo canes to support my seedlings as they appear, but to save money.
You can also use some twiggy branches from a bush you have around or a few long sticks, even a piece of chicken wire on a frame. anything to let these plants climb up and entangle themselves.
After a few weeks the climbing vines will appear, followed by the pods. which soon swell. .
To make them last all summer from June to October simple sow some more peas ever few weeks and have 2 or 3 pots to rotate and your all set. (all for the price of a packet of peas around £2.25)
So, save money on seeds by:
- Save your own seeds, once your have grown a lettuce, leave one to grow large enough to set seeds, simply collect these and your all set for next season.
- Keep packets of seeds once you have opened them, these can be saved for next year.
- Sow seeds thinly, you don’t need a hundred cabbages.
- Try to plan ahead what you are realistically going to use. sow small amounts at regular intervals to cover your usage.
- Use covers and fleece to extend the crop season. So little and often.
- Swap seeds with your friends, relatives, seed swapping sites on Facebook groups.
Use Protection to prolong Your harvest:
There are also many ways to extend the season of certain vegetables, so you don’t need to buy this vegetable in the shops out of season.
Using fleece or cloches, even recycle your plastic bottles into a mini cloches help protect your plants and extend your harvest.
(I can get fresh lettuce from my garden 11 months of the year using this method)
Try Something NEW:
Try growing new and unusual vegetables you can’t find in the store or produce that the shops charge a premium for such as yellow courgettes, Patti Pan squash, Jerusalem artichokes, peppers, chillies or mangetout. They all sound very complicated vegetables to grow, but are actually some of the easiest.
A few pots on the windowsill and a pot or 2 on the patio and your all set for a budget friendly feast!!
Start small, borrow a few seeds from a friend, buy one packet of seeds and a small bag of multipurpose compost and your off.
So there you are, my guide to cost effective ways to stop making excuses and start growing your own vegetables!
I can’t afford it is no longer an excuse, so get out there today and find some seeds. No seeds? try growing some of your kitchen left overs, yes really!
Remember to watch out for part 2 of the series Vegetable Gardening- No Excuses. Join or newsletter to keep up to date!
So Let me ask you, What is you excuse??? or are you ready to get started??