Home > A Lot of Work for Better Crops to Save Money on Food

A Lot of Work for Better Crops to Save Money on Food

February 6th, 2021 at 11:43 pm

As you all know by now, we garden.  And it saves us a lot of money.  For the cost of a large packet of green bean seeds, I grow and can enough green beans for the whole year.  I grow enough corn for fresh eating and some for the freezer to have later in the year.  I grow and freeze enough zucchini most years to have it once a week all year.  And I grow enough tomatoes to do 52 pints of diced canned.

That's all well and good, but I need to grow enough for making tomato sauce and ketchup.  I need to grow enough broccoli for the freezer.  While I had a good potato harvest, it was not enough to get us through a year without buying.  And I skipped onions and long-storing winter squash last year.  And the amount of strawberries I grew was not enough.  Well, this year I need to grow enough of that, too.  And this year we'll be doing our own seed starting.

But first we needed to increase the size of the garden.  And we needed to start clean up on last year's garden.  We currently have a 20 x 48 foot garden, with 2 old broken down raised beds.  We need to finish tearing those out and then put black plastic over the entire area to kill the weeds.  Then we are going to bulid raised beds out of free pallet wood and use linseed oil to help preserve the wood, since it is not toxic.

And we needed to clear a new 20 x 20 foot plot just for the potatoes.  So that got weed eated, raked up, and then we put down black plastic on a 10 x 20 foot section.  We need to finish putting it down over the rest of that area as soon as we get another sunny day.

My son and I managed to get the corn stalks from last year pulled out as the ground was finally soft enough.  So our weed pile to take to the green dump is quite high.  The next nice day, the bean poles, vines, and strings need to come down, too, so we can weed eat that area and cover it all with black plastic.

It takes longer than you think to get the plastic put down properly and DH has to be available to help and not working.  At least the days are long enough to have his help for an hour or so after he is done with work for the day now.  And it will only keep lasting longer so stuff can really start getting done.  Presuming we have no freezes or snow in the meanwhile.

If you would like to see our progress I made a youtube video. 

Text is and Link is  I would appreciate any views and likes you could give it.  And thank you so much for watching the last one, it made quite a difference.


4 Responses to “A Lot of Work for Better Crops to Save Money on Food”

  1. crazyliblady Says:

    I also like to grow veggies in order to save a lot of money on food. How do your preserve zucchini for use later? I tried to blanch and freeze it, but it was mushy.

  2. rob62521 Says:

    Hopefully you can get more stuff grown this year; what you did last year was amazing. Your raised gardens must be a boon! We have a small plot in the front yard and back yard, and I canned about all I could last year, but I must have gone crazy in using the tomatoes because I doubt if I have enough to get me through until next crop of tomatoes. We've had a lot of soups and spaghetti since we couldn't eat out due to being locked down.

  3. LuckyRobin Says:

    Crazyliblady--I don't blanch zucchini. It's too watery. I usually just do shreds or diced and squeeze out as much water as possible by putting it in a tea towel, wringing the top down until it is in a ball and squeezing out as much water as possible. Then I put it out on trays to flash freeze it for a couple hours before putting it in food saver bags and vacuum sealing. I mostly use it in stuff like pasta sauce. It will never be crisp, but it is better if you take those steps to not be mushy.

  4. LuckyRobin Says:

    Rob--We have to rebuild the raised beds this year. It's going to be a lot of work, but having higher beds is so worth it.

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