Grow Your Budget With A Home Garden

With food prices rising, many people are discovering the benefits of growing their own herbs, vegetables and fruits. An edible garden will trim costs from your grocery bill while providing you and your family with the freshest produce possible. Studies have shown that the average family with a vegetable garden spends just $70 a year on it and grows an estimated $600 worth of vegetables.

Big results without a big space.

Edible gardens are popping up everywhere – from containers on condo balconies, to co-op gardens in the inner city, to large suburban backyards. No matter how much space you have, you can usually always find room for a few plants. If you’re a family of four, a growing space of 200 sq. ft. should keep you in veggies all summer long. If you have a small space, consider vertical containers. One of the hottest items this summer, these versatile planters give you added room for delicious growth.

An edible garden full of delicious vegetables and fragrant herbs can save you a bushel if you plant things that are high yield. For the average gardener in most regions of the country slicing tomatoes, pole and bush green beans, leaf lettuce, cucumbers and bell peppers are your best choice. Herbs offer amazing returns. For less than $2, you can buy a 3-inch pot of parsley, chives, oregano, mint, or basil and harvest leaves all season long.

Preserve it now, enjoy it later.

You can enjoy the fresh quality and great flavour the moment you harvest it. Or you can also preserve some of it to enjoy later on by freezing, canning, drying or pickling it. For everything from the fundamentals of preserving to terrific seasonal recipes, check out this helpful site: www.wellpreserved.ca/preserving

Share the wealth with others.

Many gardeners already share their fresh produce with friends and family, such as extra tomatoes and zucchinis. For anyone with fruit trees, sometimes you just can’t get all the ripe fruit picked in time. There are a number of fruit sharing projects across the country that help fruit tree owners put an abundant harvest to good use rather than wasting it. Volunteers will come and help pick the fruit and then it’s split between the homeowner, the volunteers and local food banks or charities.

Check out these fruit sharing projects across Canada:

Not Far From The Tree (Toronto)

Hamilton Fruit Tree Project (Hamilton, On)

Fruit Share (Manitoba)

Lifecycles Fruit Tree Project (Victoria, B.C.)

Vancouver Fruit Tree Project (Vancouver, B.C.)

Nelson Harvest Rescue Program

Sunshine Coast Fruit Tree Project

Operation Fruit Rescue (Edmonton)

Out Of Your Tree (Saskatoon)

Want to grow your budget this summer? Put on your gardening gloves and get to work!

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