Growing your own vegetables is a rewarding pastime and a great way to make sure that your family's diet is full of fresh produce. It's also a great way to significantly reduce the cost of your weekly shopping bill. However, making sure that your vegetable garden is cost effective is very important otherwise any savings you make on your shopping bill will be reduced by the running costs involved. Here are three ways to minimise the cost of your vegetable production.
1. Install a water tank
Water costs are consistently rising, and vegetable gardens are very water hungry. Install a water tank to collect rainwater for your garden's watering needs instead of using the expensive, treated water from the town water supply. The size of the tank is dependent on the volume of water you'll need and also the size you have available to house it.
Although a water tank will cost you money to buy and install, after the initial outlay you won't have to spend a penny on water costs. Also, because the water isn't being used for human consumption you won't need to install any water monitoring or water treating appliances. This means there are no added expenses after supply and installation. Learn more about your options by consulting resources like Williams & Jackson.
2. Make your own compost
Feeding and fertilising the soil in your vegetable garden can be expensive if you choose to buy pre-made products from a hardware store or garden centre. You can completely eliminate this cost by creating your own compost source. You can buy a specially-made compost bin, but it's just as effective to use a small area of your garden and simply create a compost heap.
Compost is created simply by saving your kitchen scraps and adding them to your compost heap instead of throwing them in the rubbish. Once the scraps have broken down over time they can then be added to your vegetable garden to provide nutrients to your plants. You can also add grass cuttings and leaves. Make sure that you don't add meat or dairy scraps to the compost as this can attract vermin and create a foul smell.
3. Use heirloom seeds
Heirloom seeds are seed varieties for vegetables in their original form. They aren't genetically modified and have not been exposed to chemical or pesticides. Many people believe that heirloom seeds produce vegetables that are tastier, more brightly coloured, and larger than other seed varieties.
Heirloom seeds are generally more expensive than other varieties. Although this increases the initial investment in your vegetable garden, it means that the ongoing seed cost will be virtually next to nothing. This is because, unlike vegetables grown from genetically modified seeds, heirloom vegetables will produce viable seeds, which you can save and use to replant your garden during the next growing season.
These tips will help you to create a productive and inexpensive vegetable garden. The added bonus is that they will also help you to create a garden that is almost entirely organic and free from chemicals, pesticides, and preservatives.