Creating a veggie patch is not only great for your back pocket but also a perfect excuse to spend some time outdoors in the fresh air. Plus, the kids and grandkids love it! When you grow your own you’re not just getting improved flavour and freshness but garden picked produce is jam-packed with nutrition.
Think about the cost of one small tomato plant, let’s say $5.00 which has the ability to produce fruit for several weeks over the season. Now, compare that with the cost of one punnet of cherry tomatoes from the supermarket? As long as you can get to them before the possum, then you’re easily in front. If your household is anything like ours, you would have bought countless sleeves of herbs only to find that half the time you retrieve them from the bottom of the fridge looking wilted and sad and at a cost of around $3.00 each that can certainly add up. Imagine cutting fresh herbs straight from your garden for dinner and not having any waste.
For the experimental green thumb, there are numerous ways to save right in our own kitchens. Did you know many vegetable and herbs can be re-grown from kitchen scraps? Yep, that’s right….the scraps that usually go into our green bins or compost can be turned into new plants. Here are just a few for you to consider.
Herbs like basil, coriander, and lemongrass will shot roots just by leaving the stems in a glass of water on a sunny window sill, then they can be planted into the garden or pot to mature. You can also grow an impressive indoor sweet potato vine in a jar of water with just the end of a sweet potato that would normally be thrown away. Anyone for guacamole? Did you know you can grow a whole new avocado tree just from the seed of an avocado? By suspending an avocado seed over a glass of water using toothpicks to hold it in place you can experiment with shooting your own seedling. This one will require some patience, avocado trees grown from seed can take over 5yrs before they produce fruit, it’s a long term plan!
Before you reach for the shovel, first you need to know the limitations of your garden — how much room you have and the aspect of the sun and shade. You will also have to bear in mind how much time you can allocate to upkeep.
Here are a few tips to create a sustainable garden that has limited impact on the surrounding environment.
1. Vegetables such as tomatoes, capsicum or beans can be grown vertically and if you’re lacking space, use pots placed on windowsills or balconies, things like herbs, strawberries or miniature fruit trees are perfect for pots.
2. Plant in batches over a few weeks. This way you’ll spread out your crop over the season.
3. Be water-wise, some plants require less water than others, and as a general rule, adding organic matter to the soil and mulching well can help to maintain moisture.
4. Why not go organic? Organic products are readily available, they are environmentally friendly and safe for use around kids and beneficial bugs like ladybirds and bees. The eco-organic garden has a wonderful website full of useful tips for organic gardening. https://ecoorganicgarden.com.au/
Whatever you decide to grow in your garden or pot or glass, it’s the perfect time of the year to soak up vitamin D from the sun and get some fresh air. It’s good for your health and great for your wealth!
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This article is for information purposes only and does not provide advice in any form. It does not take into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs.
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