With the warm weather here, are you tempted to take up gardening? Gardening brings many benefits to your health, including reducing stress, anxiety and depression. All the more reason to get those seeds and shovels out.
Gardening means getting a few well-needed supplies. These supplies cost money. What then, can you do, if you’re on a tight budget? Here are five tips to help you garden without breaking the piggy bank.
If this is your first time making a garden, you might want to set your sights on something small, even if it’s just a few plants of tomatoes in pots on your patio. You can also make a small garden with a few essentials, like lettuce, carrots, tomatoes and cucumbers. Give yourself a chance to get the hang of it. You can always expand your garden next year.
Get the Soil You Need
When making a garden, especially if this is your first time, you’ll need to get bags of soil and manure. Shop around to find the best prices. No need to get the most expensive type of soil. Get some garden soil and a few bags of manure. How many you should get depends on the size of your garden. The smaller your garden, the less you need. For vegetables that grow above ground, six inches deep is enough. For root vegetables, you need about twelve inches of soil. Mix in a little bit of manure in your soil, and you’re good to go.
Make your compost to save money eventually. You can make your compost bin from wood pallets. Put in grass cuttings and fallen leaves, as well as fruit waste and vegetable peels. Cardboard egg cartons are also good for compost. Don’t put meat, excrement, cat litter, diseased plants or weeds. Turn the compost regularly to give it a good airing.
Now comes the time to get seeds or seedlings. While you can get some at a fair price in greenhouses and various stores, it’s always nice to get free stuff. Ask your friends and family members who make gardens if they have extra seedlings they don’t need. When starting seeds indoors, gardeners usually plant more seeds than needed in case some don’t grow, which leaves them with more seedlings than necessary.
Search online for free seeds or seed swaps, or join a seed library.
Harvest the seeds from fruits and vegetables that you buy. Clean and dry the seeds before storing them in airtight containers in a cool, dry place. Label each container with the date and its content, as seeds keep for an average of three years. Do the same with products from your garden.
Check the Calendar
To know when to plant your seeds or seedlings, check the planting calendar for your area. A quick search online will give you all the information you need.
With these tips, you’ll have a nice garden without breaking your budget, so you can relax and enjoy your fresh fruit and vegetables.