Gardening season is nearing the end around these parts. This is the first year I have had a garden at home, and while it only covers a small area and doesn’t get the greatest amount of sunlight (it is in the best possible spot for sunlight, unfortunately our yard just doesn’t receive loads of light!) I have enjoyed the process and plan on having a vegetable garden again next year.
I left the garden organic, and as frugal as possible… I didn’t purchase any type of mulch, compost, top soil, pest control, etc. I was even able to create a fence around the garden with a roll of lightweight mesh I found in the shed, and used old tools like broom handles, old hockey sticks, and long bits of wooden trim/boards to make the fence posts. VERY frugal, indeed!
As far as the actual cost of the garden, I spent around $35 on plants and seeds, and around $20-$25 on planting containers (a lot of them I haven’t even used yet, I am storing them for next year!) and gardening tools such as hand trimmers for instance. I didn’t need to spend anything on purchasing shovels or digging tools as we already have those at the house.
Here’s a list of vegetables I planted this year: zucchini, tomatoes (tiny tim, beefsteak, field, and roma), sugar snap peas, pumpkin, baby watermelon, spinach, bell peppers, and brussel sprouts.
These vegetables didn’t work out: baby watermelon (didn’t get the best sunlight, did grow tiny grape sized watermelons but then they either died off or something ate them), pumpkin (absolutely took over a huge area of garden, did grow one smallish-medium sized pumpkin but a groundhog was eating it, after we took the half eaten pumpkin off and took care of that groundhog it never did end up growing another pumpkin… there was a few places along the vine that something was chewing at it so parts kept dying off..), spinach (4 plants quickly wilted up and died, I assume the soil was the main problem with this one), bell peppers (I purchased two plants, one blue jay peppers and one normal green? peppers, the normal one didn’t grow any peppers, I think it may have had some sort of disease from the garden center, it lost a lot of leaves and didn’t grow well at all, the blue jay pepper plant did grow one pepper early on which wasn’t very impressive, and now later in the season it has a few small peppers but it may be too late for it to really do much, I think I will bring this plant in over the winter and try again with it next year.. maybe the bigger and stronger it is the better it will do.)
The vegetables that did work: sugar snap peas, tomatoes, zucchini, brussel sprouts (?? Maybe ?? Haven’t eaten any of them yet, still waiting to see if the brussel sprouts will grow any bigger).
What I would do differently next year: I will plant sugar snap peas a few different times over the season to have a more consistent amount, otherwise they tend to die off before the gardening season ends. I will only grow smaller varieties of tomatoes (cherry sized) as I didn’t find much use for the larger tomatoes and wasn’t very impressed with making my own tomato sauce.
My gardening plans as far for next year: I would like to plant cherry tomatoes, sugar snap peas, green beans, and zucchini for sure. Corn may be a possibility. A neighbor has given me a bunch of ever-bearing strawberry plants and raspberry plants recently, so I am curious as to how well those will do in my garden next year.