Can This Reluctant Gardener Learn to Save Money By Growing Vegetables?

Last year I was the lucky recipient of a cherry tomato harvest from Aimee’s garden. (Tasteless cherry tomatoes go for $2.50 [on sale] and up per package at stores.) My family loves them, eats them for snacks, on sandwiches, in salads—it’s one of their favorite foods. I’m ready to start growing my own cherry tomatoes, but it’s not going to be easy for me.

Cherry Tomato
Hoping this is my future...my own cherry tomatoes. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Yes, I know, growing cherry tomatoes is easy. Easy for whom? Not for me, as I wrote in an article for AOL about my black thumb-itis. I was able to grow wildflowers a blue moon ago, not anymore. I kill every plant given to me. A neighbor’s tomato plant gifted to us – dead.  (We have plenty of sun, we water, but no success.) I’m willing to start small—again—with a container garden. Aimee has seeds for me. There are free seed packs at our library. I even ordered a tomato plant from my son’s track-and-field school fundraiser (…and I never order expensive fundraiser stuff, so I must be serious…). If I’m successful, maybe, just maybe, I’ll move up to a square-foot garden. And, maybe add lettuce to my garden. Gulp.

Another Goal for a Reluctant Gardener:

Composting: I went to a talk at our library in March on “How to Start a Vegetable Garden,” and though most of this basic talk went over my head, the presenter and long-time gardener, Eric Frisk, said something that made me want to compost. He said he started composting ages ago because he was just too cheap to buy dirt. Well, I’m cheap, too! So, now I want to compost for free dirt. Aimee is also my inspiration because she is guiding me on how to start composting to save on garbage and, yes, get my free dirt.

~Marilyn, TFF

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6 thoughts on “Can This Reluctant Gardener Learn to Save Money By Growing Vegetables?

  1. Good luck! Two years ago we tore up about 1/3 of our yard and built a beautiful raised bed garden with a focus on Heirloom veggies that we grow from seeds. This fall our entire crop was devasted by Root Knot Nematodes. We have to Solarize our dirt this summer and hopefully will be back in business this fall. In the meantime we filled a few tubs with fresh dirt and purchased a tomato a cucumber and a squash plant. Hopefully we’ll get at least something because we sure miss our fresh veggies!

    1. Oh my goodness, what is a root knot nematode?? How do you solarize dirt? See, I’m overwhelmed already :–) But at least you sound like you are a veteran gardner! Good luck, too!! ~Marilyn

      1. They are microscopic worm like creatures that live in the soil. Very prolific here (Florida) but I’m not sure about other areas. They crawl up the roots and form knots thereby starving the plant. The only way to kill them is to “bake” them by solarizing. We have to cover all our beds with plastic and let the sun heat the soil to well over 100 degrees. Experienced? Not us, lol! We just thought it would be a good idea to start growing some of our food since we knew prices were rising. At the rate we’re going I think our home grown produce is costing us about $300 per pound if we calculate what it cost to build the garden and divide it by our harvest pounds. Not quite the bargain we were looking for, lol! 🙂

        1. Thank you for the tutorial-I need any help I can get when it comes to understanding gardening! — [?] Oh my goodness, I hope your costs come down–I guess you can consider it “gourmet gardening” — lol!! ~Marilyn, TFF

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