Photo copyright Gordon Smith. Used with permission. Click on image for link to his photo blog.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Save Money on Food by Planting a Garden

I remember sitting in a big wooden chair, my legs and feet dangling over the edge of the seat in front of my grandfather’s wooden desk in the dining room. It’s the day after Christmas and looking out the window I’m watching the bushy tailed gray squirrels chasing each other around the trunks and limbs of the large pine trees now covered in a heavy snow. Hardly a time to think of hot days and a summer garden. Yet, the large desk top is covered with all sorts of colorful catalogs that have been arriving by mail since early December. There are catalogs for feed, for seeds, for flour, for rice, for beans and other staples that would be delivered in large colorful flower design cotton fabric sacks. Those same sacks would later be transformed into an apron or even a dress the following year. For serious gardeners, such as my grandfather, the time to plant a garden (in one’s mind that is), was in early January.

The largest and most fun catalog to look through was always the one from the Burpee Seed company.

My grandfather would plan his garden, order the seeds, and plant them in the cold frame he had in a sunny spot on the south side of the house until all danger of frost had passed and the young seedlings could be planted in the garden.

Perhaps one of the oldest mail order seed companies, the Burpee seed company, is still in business. You can request a catalog by mail, or order garden seeds through their online digital seed catalog HERE

Another seed company my grandfather ordered from is now on the internet. He would be AMAZED at this thing called the internet! The Park Seed Company

So, the time to plan a vegetable garden is in late December or early January. If you have never had a summer garden, try not to be too ambitious. Choose your garden location wisely for sun and shade exposure. For your first garden, choose easy to grow plants. If you are successful with your first summer garden, plan to expand the following year. Buy only non-hybrid seeds which will permit you to save the seeds from your garden for next year’s crop.

Not much space for a garden? No problem. Just think small. Check your local library for small space gardening books. Or check Amazon books using the search term Square Foot Gardening. Want to trade all types of seeds with others? Check out the Free Heirloom Seed Swap

The Garden Rockstar - Repurposing Toilet Paper Rolls in the Garden - YouTube The Garden Rockstar - Repurposing Toilet Paper Rolls in the Garden - YouTube

1 comment:

  1. Excellent Article! Love your Blog too!
    The is another great place to get seeds. They are Heirloom seeds, so you can harvest your seeds at the end of the growing season and plant them again next growing season.