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More greens for your green

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Do you really save money by growing your own vegetables?

The author of this article was able to find some estimates for how much you can save by growing your own food, but they are all pretty vague:

BusinessPundit.com estimates a mere $20 savings from growing a few tomato and pepper plants on his patio.

Get Rich Slowly estimates a $1.91 return for each $1 invested in his garden -- but acknowledges that 60 hours of labor also went into the project. This gardener saved about $300, so you could say that he and his wife earned $20 an hour, tax free, for working on their plot.

In this New York Times article, a Burpee rep estimates that a $100 investment in a garden will yield over $1,000 in savings. In the same piece, an experienced gardener says she hopes to save $20 a week, which, extrapolated over the course of the year, is about the same thing. She mentioned drying and freezing some of her yield, so I think she meant over the whole year and not just during the harvest season.

If you do invest your time and money as a new gardener this year, here are some tips to help avoid losing that investment:

Myscha Tehriault's recent post about cheap garden hacks right here on Wise Bread.

Get Rich Slowly has great tips, including: Start small, pick high-yield plants (berries over corn), and share seeds with friends.

Growing Plants for Free is supposed to be a good book for beginners and experts alike on splitting plants and harvesting seeds so you don't have to buy them.

This article has some tips for frugal gardening, like making your own fertilizer with worms (I'm gonna wait until fall to make another go at the worm bin) and which seeds you can save and expect to come true. http://www.suite101.com/content/frugal-living-vegetable-gardening-a19642

RE-posted from Wise Bread by Carrie Kirby.

Does anyone else have some good resources or advice on getting the most out of your garden?
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I assumed those upside down tomato planters were actually a good way to save money in that area.  You can buy them for about $10 and they pop out 8-10 decent sized tomatos at minimum.

When I buy 4 tomatos at the store it seems to cost about $6.  I'm not sure if they are reusable is the only problem and with winter incoming, pretty useless until May.
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