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The Benefits of Growing Your Own Food

Boost Your Health and Your Bottom Line

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Oh Yes...gardening is sooo much fun! My son, which is soon to be 12, wanted us to do a garden since he was 8. He helps out so much and has even traded vegetables with some neigbors...We are in Detroit, and we have grown greens, tomatoes, all peppers, broccoli, cucumber onions carrots and even corn!!! Report
We have always tried this, but this was our first big success year!! Homegrown tomatoes and snap beans!! Yummy and so economical! Report
I read this article & it all sounds good & dandy, but I tried a rather medium sized garden this past spring & lets just say the savings wasn't there. My water bill went up $50 a mth, I spent $30 on seeds & $30 on manure etc. I planted tomatoes(they never produced), lettuce(it felt fuzzy & got eaten up by bugs), collards(they only got as big as my hand & then they got eaten up too!), corn(it grew nice & tall & had lots of cobs, but they never grew bigger than 1 1/2 inches long), green peppers(plants didn't grow big, no peppers), pumpkins(vines grew then died), peas(started to grow but died), string beans ~ grew but only got about a handful of beans, yellow squash & zuchini(both plants grew & flowered & then died), & okra **grew & produced** I watered every night, I weeded till my back & knees couldn't take it any more, I was sunburnt, I got blisters, I put alot of time & energy in & got precious little out. From now on I'm going to the farmers market & spending my time & money on better things. Report
1960ANN
this is my first year growing a vegetable garden, and I tried a lot of different types of food to see what would grow in my area. The rewards are incredible, when you can grow you own red and yellow peppers from seed instead of paying 2.99 for each one. I have cucumber, green beans, black eye peas and big boy tomatoes. Come winter (at least what we call winter in Central Florida) I can't wait to see what I can grow then. It's rewarding and relaxing and I wonder why I didn't start one sooner!. Report
NEWME116
We grow a small garden each year and enjoy the taste of fresh grown produce. Another fun part of it is sharing it with friends, family and neighbors. Its so fun to see them get excited about fresh grown veggies and fruit! When we get an over abundance of items (zucchini for instance) we take them to our local food bank. It is a bit of work, weeding, watering, etc, but also provides great rewards. Report
This is an awesome article! i've always loved gardening every since we had a huge backyard garden when I was a kid. I've always kept flowers even at the little apartments I've had over the years, and my husband & I grew some herbs last year. Hopefully we'll be moving on to a big veggie garden when we get our new house this year! Gardening can be so much fun, and the product is yummy & definitely something to be proud of! Report
ANSARHALISI
This is GREAT! I grew my own garden from seeds last year must have gotten 50 lbs of tomatoes. I had the best tasting strawberries I had ever tasted. I would like then to do an article on raising chickens! I don't live in the country but I still have chickens. We raise them for eggs. It's simple to raise chickens.......don't know why more people don't. Report
ANSARHALISI
This is GREAT! I grew my own garden from seeds last year must have gotten 50 lbs of tomatoes. I had the best tasting strawberries I had ever tasted. I would like then to do an article on raising chickens! I don't live in the country but I still have chickens. We raise them for eggs. It's simple to raise chickens.......don't know why more people don't. Report
As a child I remember having to get out in the garden early before the heat. Mom and Dad had 4 kids to feed and money was tight. Didn't enjoy it at the time but came winter and we would open a jar of peaches...yummm. Had 1 atempt at gardening when I got married. It produced lots of vegetables for us. Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, peppers, tomatos, onions. For some reason that was the only one we had.

Last year we decided we would attempt at grow tomatos and peppers in containers which was a huge flop....forgot to drill drainage holes. The roots rotted. Did some research online and found square foot gardening. Basically it's 4'X4' frames marked off into 12" squares. We have 4 beds built ready to add the soil mixture this weekend.

I also found directions for a self-watering garden containers using 2 rubbermaid totes, a water pond soil basket ,black rubber hose and soil mixture. These would work for patios or apartment dwellers. I might give these a whirl this year too. Report
I've tried container gardening since I moved up here and not had much success. I also tried growing herbs in strawbales and that didn't work. I have come to the conclusion that I need to have a greenhouse so that my plants can take advantage of the light before it gets warm up here. Report
I have tried growing tomatoes in containers the past 3 years now. Just when they start to look great, they start rotting from the bottom. I keep getting tomato worms and have NO idea what to do about it---especially when trying to avoid pesticides. I did plant a blueberry and blackberry bush last year--so we'll see if that produces anything this year. I also tried growing peppers--green and banana. The banana peppers came out fine, but I got green peppers about as big as my thumb. I love the idea of gardening but I'm just not good at it. I'm not ready to give up yet. I guess I need to do a lot of research to get serious about it. Report
Container gardening is the way to grow food when you have a patio or small area. Report
Rivero! Thanks for posting about the growing boxes ...I have hubby working in it now. What a great way to grow a garden that self waters! Thanks Report
For those who want to grow plants with the Earthbox method but can't afford the initial investment, here is a link to instructions for building your own earthbox type growing system. I haven't made it yet, but I'll be picking up the supplies this week. Here's a link:

http://www.green-trust.org/freebooks/Ear
thbox.pdf Report
My family's health has improved so much as we now grow and can almost all of our fruits and vegetables. The time is well worth it as it cuts back on illness and trips to the drs.

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