Archive for the Gardening Category

More on Gardening

Posted in Gardening, Livin' Green, Saving Dough with tags , , , , , , , on June 3, 2009 by Kate

Food is such a basic need.  Really, you can’t live without it.  So why does such a large percentage of people rely on someone else to provide it for them?  I’m very guilty of this too, but I really think it’s time to become more self-sufficient.  Scott touched on this before, but I would like to go a little more in depth. . .really drive the point home.  Gardening is something almost anyone can do.  You don’t need a yard or a huge plot of land.  You can use a porch, a balcony, a fire escape, a stoop, or even a window.  Perhaps you have a friend with a garden that would let you plant one row, work something out.  Container gardening is a great solution for those of us without any actual land to work with.  Big fancy containers are not necessary, just look at the fashionable planters we are using.  An old Rubbermaid storage bin and some five gallon pails are home to our beans, cucumbers, and bell peppers.  The Rubbermaid tote is also supporting the shepard’s hook (that I bought at Goodwill) that is holding the Topsy Turvys with our tomatoes and hot peppers.I really didn’t need to buy the Topsy Turvys, I could have gotten my backside in gear and made one myself.  I found a metal stand at a rummage sale that Scott is now making his herb garden.  I also found some hanging window box stand on sale that will hang right over the edge of the balcony and hold any standard rectangle planter.  We are planning on growing lettuce for Elvi and me in these.  Heck, you can grow plants right out of a bag of potting soil if you want to be really lazy about it.  Although we of course can’t grow all of our food this way, we will be able to enjoy a lot of fresh produce that we grew ourselves when it comes time to harvest.  What produce we can’t grow, we can purchase  from local farmers markets and roadside stands.  That way we are also supporting local economy!  Yay us.  Did I mention that we will also be saving some money by not buying produce at chain grocery stores?  Have you checked out the prices lately? Yikes.  One more plus is that when we are growing our own food, we know exactly what it has been exposed to, sprayed with, fertilized with, and so on.  When we buy food from a grocery store, we really have no idea what or how many chemicals we may be ingesting.  So what is the downside? Well, it’s a little extra work, but I truly believe the end results are well worth it.  Please share any container gardening tips and tricks with us!

Happy Gardening!

Our Little Garden

Posted in Gardening, Livin' Green, Saving Dough with tags , , , , , , , on June 2, 2009 by scottski74

 As an attempt to show you how to live cheap and green, Kate and I have started a garden on my second story balcony.  Not everyone has a big yard to grow produce.  We aim to show you that you can grow organic, fresh produce, at a reasonable price with little or no land.

In my 20’s (not to date myself) I was the frozen food type. Pizza’s, TV dinners, Macaroni & cheese, were the basis of my diet.  But over the last few years I found that making my lunch or dinner from scratch is not only satisfying, but a lot cheaper than readymade food. I once spent $60 to make chili for a cook-off, which I won a $25 bar tab for.  It felt good to win, but was it worth it?  My challenge to myself is, can I make a chili with everything but the meat from my garden. 

This is my first attempt at growing produce and I’m very excited to do so.  Kate knows more about how to do it than I and she has been helping me on how to get started.  We are currently growing tomatoes, hot peppars, beans, cucumbers, and a few herbs.  This is just the start. 

For the most part, we are using left over containers (with the exception of the Topsy Turvys, which you can use a burlap sack).  Also, we bought seedlings, instead of planting our own seeds. 

This is the beginning of one of our practical projects that we will be talking about; to help anyone that is interested in living cheap and green.