Estimated Monthly Savings: $75
Keeping a garden is a great way to brighten up your yard, grow healthy food for your family, and it’s a known stress reliever. But a trip to your local garden store can leave you with some sticker shock. By the time you’ve bought the plants, the fertilizer, bug sprays, and soil, you’re wondering if your yard really needs that extra pop of color this year. Don’t worry, keeping a garden doesn’t have to be expensive. These tips will help grow the garden of your dreams without breaking the bank.
Start from Seed
You’ll get more bang for your buck if you start your plants from seed rather than buying starts from the garden store. Your typical cell pack of flowers will have around six plants and run you anywhere from $2-$5. A packet of seeds, on the other hand, could have hundreds of seeds and will only cost you around $3. Have extra seeds? Set up a seed swap with friends and exchange your extra seeds for other great seeds.
Save your Seeds
Speaking of seeds, you can start your plants from seed without even buying a packet from the store. The seeds you need are already growing in your garden or are in your fridge. Yep, you can save the seeds from the fruits and vegetables that you buy at the store. Once you go to use your vegetables, simply pull out the seeds, dry them, and store them to plant next year.
Save your Scraps
Don’t throw away your scraps! Eggshells make great containers for seed starts. When your seedling is ready, it can go straight into the ground, shell and all. And those food scraps? Compost them. Vegetable ends, coffee grounds, eggshells, they will mix together to make a rich compost that will save you big bucks on fertilizer.
Want a bonus tip? Head down to your local coffee shop and ask them if you can have their used grounds. Many places will give you a giant bag of them for free. Coffee grounds can be put directly on your soil to add a little acidity for your acid-loving plants or thrown into your compost pile.
So soak up some sun, get a little dirt on your hands, and enjoy a little extra green in your garden and your pocketbook.