Budget-Friendly Ways To Grow Your Own Fruit & Vegetables
Growing your own fruit and vegetables can save you hundreds over a year. Fruit and vegetables have rocketed in price recently and food inflation now sits at 13.6% for vegetables and 8.6% for fruit. For this reason, it makes perfect sense to don your gardening gloves and get growing. You could even turn your produce into some amazing food items to sell at your local food festival. Best of all, you can grow whatever you like on the smallest of budgets.
Opt for cost-effective produce
Some fruit and vegetables are more expensive to grow than others. For example, it costs between £3 and £4.50 to grow 1 kg of strawberries. But courgettes and cucumbers cost only 5 pence each. You should also opt for fruit and vegetables that are easy to grow. This is particularly important if you’re a bit of a novice in the garden or don’t want wastage. Some of the easiest fresh produce to grow are:
• Green beans
Grow the right plants at the right time
Some fruit and vegetables should only be planted at certain times of the year. Outdoor hardy vegetables should be planted between March and April when the weather starts to warm up and frosts are unlikely. Greenhouse vegetables generally do okay from around February. If you’re after bundles of fruit and want to plant fruit trees, it’s recommended to do this between December and March. Not only do you need to plant the right fruit and veggies at the appropriate time of the year, but you also need to ensure your soil is suitable for them. In the US, there are plant hardiness zones. There are 13 zones in total and each one lets gardeners know which plants will survive the weather in them. The UK is mostly zone 9, although it does range between zones 6 and 10. So, when choosing which fruit and vegetables to grow, check the hardiness zone they’re suitable for, as well as which area your land falls into.
Utilize the weather
Britain isn't known for having the best weather. But it never gets in the way of a British Food Festival. Make sure you utilise the weather as much as possible when growing fruit and vegetables. This will save on resources and ensure you get the best crops possible. Installing water butts in your garden to collect rainwater is a good idea. You can then use this water to water your growing food. Many plants, including tomatoes, aubergines, and lettuce need warm sunny conditions to thrive. Investing in a greenhouse is a must as you'll get the best quality veggies possible. You haven't got to splash out on a glass greenhouse, though. Pop-up plastic greenhouses are budget-friendly and work just as well.
Fruit and vegetables taste so much better when they’re homegrown. Plus, they’re much better for your bank balance. So, if you want to grow your own and have a strict budget, be sure to follow this advice.
Article by Lottie Westfield.
News posted on Monday 17th April 2023