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The Time Has Come To Grow My Own!

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posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:13 AM
Don't think this is as severe as "survival", only time will tell. I have been tinkering around now for a few years with growing my own fruit and veg, with varying degrees of success.
Having read several articles and watched programmes on the subject of mineral deficiency in fruit and veg since the last world war, I have decided to take the plunge and go for it myself.
See a few reports below on the subject:

I know there is nothing new in what I am saying, just another guy deciding to grow his own, but having done a few sums, if you have a small family, it is, in my opinion a no brainer. The outlay may not be easy to find, granted, I have sold my wife's old car to finance it!
I reckon I will recoup my costs within 18 months and then be saving on costs of weekly shops and in the bargain eating much more healthily.
I am going for a Polytunnel, (weather here in Ireland can be a bit iffy at times), with raised beds inside and a few more outside for hardier plants.
Having invested in a Polytunel guide book, (I run a bookshop so that helped), it is realistic for me to grow produce all year round, although limited varieties in the head of winter time.

Even the cost of compost and plant food can be vastly reduced over time if you compost heap yourself and go get seaweed from the beaches to make your own food, mixed with tea bags and stuff.

The main reason for my post is a couple of reasons:
1. Have you ever considered doing anything similar?
2. Are you doing a similar thing? How is it working out? Any tips please!

I am by no means a gardener, but think it is one way that I can address my financial situation, my (and the families) potential health situation, and even do my bit for helping local neighbours (if I am successful)

Just need to find a supplier of non GM seeds.....

What do you think?

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:19 AM
reply to post by Mufcutcakeyumyum

Thought about aquaponics? if you did it inddors with led lights you can grow all years round and have a supply of fish too

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:20 AM
reply to post by Mufcutcakeyumyum

Good for you! You won't be sorry.
This is where I get my non-gmo seeds.
Victory Heirloom Seeds

Once you get things growing you can learn to save the seeds from your plants and you won't have to buy them anymore.
Best of luck!

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:27 AM
reply to post by CrimsonMoon

Yes, it did enter into my mind, my problem is I have a small house (3 young kiddies), but a huge garden. However, I do have a concrete workshop, which could house such a thing, suppose it comes down to finances. I will definately take another look into it.

Thank you.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:28 AM
reply to post by Neysa

Thanks for the link Neysa, will check it out, can't be too heavy on postage!
Hope there are no restrictions on import etc!

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:29 AM
reply to post by Mufcutcakeyumyum

Glad to see someone else joining the fun. I can only grow some stuff on my balcony and indoors, but anything helps really.

Just need to find a supplier of non GM seeds.....

I hate to send you off to Alex Jones but..... there is a regular advertiser on his site that sells seed kits, including kits that are sealed and store-able indefinitely, that specializes in heirloom seeds and non gmo stuff. Might want to check it out.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:29 AM
reply to post by Mufcutcakeyumyum

Explanation: S&F!

Personal Disclosure: Goodluck with these endevours! May you succeed far beyond your wildest dreams ok!

reply to post by CrimsonMoon

Explanation: St*rred!

Personal Disclosure: I think this thread may have relevant info on vertical farming etc!

The Great Awakening (by HiAliens posted on 13-9-2009 @ 09:09 AM) [ATS]

Specifically this post on Vertical Farming. [ATS]

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:33 AM
Go for it!! Start with one bed and few trees, put them in large containers if you're unsure of their final spots.
Study your yard really well, look for where the sun falls during the day, where water pools up, or can't be reached with a hose when picking locations for your plants.

I'm no where close to being self sufficient but I do save a lot of money on herbs, tomatoes and a few veggies. Definitely start an herb garden (grocery store prices are insane for small bundles of fresh herbs) Most herbs are easy to grow. One of each variety is usually enough for light use in everyday cooking. I have several basil plants because I use that more. You don't even have to buy seeds if money is tight. You can start many herbs from cuttings and I've used seeds from grocery store tomatoes, zucchini, squash to start plants (I know they say you shouldn't but I do it anyways) Potatoes sprouting in the pantry? cut them up, harden and toss in the ground. Scallions can be replanted, just use the top portion and replant and you'll never have to buy them again.

the hardest part to gardening is really the upkeep and weeding, with three kids, I'd offer them 5 cent per weed and make them help you pull them once the garden is up and running
Good luck and have fun with it.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 07:37 AM
Awesome! I think that is great what you are doing.

Yes, I intend on having a garden, but have not begun it yet. I am not good with plants but I luckily have friends who are willing to help me.

From what I understand the "heirloom" seeds are the way to go, and I have had the veggies that my friend grows, and the heirloom veggies are amazing and so flavorful.

It is a bit pricey to get it all going, that is one reason why I have yet to get started but I think in the long run, the time, effort and money is an investment well worth it!

When I lived in Germany I was told that after WWII the people had few veggies, so the German govt made a law that each German was entitled to a small plot of land for the purpose of having a garden to sustain themselves. So, even if you lived in an apartment in the city, on the outskirts of town you could go a have a small garden to tend.

I do not know if this story is completely true or not, perhaps some German ATSers can verify that for me, but I do know the gardens exist, I have seen them and they are lovely. If the story is true, I think it is pretty amazing the German govt was willing to do that.

I agree with the concept of everyone having a small plot of land in which to grow stuff, it seems like a very basic thing that everyone should have the ability to do if they choose.

I wish you the best of luck and will be interested in updates, it will give me an idea what I am in for when I get started!

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 08:01 AM
Thank you all for your replies and words of encouragement.
I will definately follow up the heirloom seeds info, and apparently the whole fish farm idea with trout in Ireland is relatively easy, so am looking into that too.
Could even put aside an area in the tunnel for the fish, ideal conditions.
Herbs are a no brainer, oregano, basil, and sage to name a few are really easy to grow and the health benefits are well documented.

Thanks again.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 02:01 PM
I have ventured into gardening more this year as well. Several kinds of tomatoes, cantaloupe, watermelon, beans, peas, carrots, salad mix, radish, potatoes, mint, basil, rosemary, turnips and beets. So far my seeds are germinating well in regular pots. Will thin out a bit once they get the third set of leaves. Using shipping pallets turned upright, made pockets with landscape fabric. These will need watering a little more often, but can place them around the back of the house and patio closer to the water source. Ask around or notice who is buying gardening books at your store, see if you can glean a few seeds here and there, or even one piece of fruit or vegetable, then save at harvesting time. Your seed collection will explode! Research proper seed saving and hardening off techniques. Was given about 4 cups of strawberries last week. I picked 4 of the choicest ones, and with readers and an X-acto knife carefully picked off over 250 seeds! 100 I shared with another friend, the others I will attempt to germinate.

Exciting to see you can grow your own. And save money in the long run. Learn to can, dehydrate naturally and mechanically, and proper freezing techniques. Any questions u2u me, been at this all my life.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 04:24 PM
I have been starting plants in a window garden in the kitchen and growing a few things on the patio outside. Focused on small area techniques with a mind toward learning what can be grown on a sailboat or other small area.

Have grown sprouts and some kitchen spices, basil, cilantro, parsley. Have some tomato plants in an upside down planter on the patio.

Sprouter planter here

Upside down planter by Flambeau here

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 04:41 PM
30 or so years ago I lived totally self sufficient with group of friends.
Since then I left to pursue other things
But this last year a friend and I took on a derelict Commercial sized Polly tunnel.
We do buy some seed but mostly gather our own from our plants
Sowing seed and then planting them on
Have you done this?
If you find yourself short of growing space there are several things you could do
I am no expert = no one is but am only to glad to help if you need it

edit on 2-5-2012 by artistpoet because: (no reason given)

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 06:01 PM
I've been experimenting with my garden for over tens years. What I found is that you should be growing what grows best. I do best with black beans, pinto beans, tomatoes, squash, and tobacco. I still grow corn, potatoes, garlic and leeks, but they don't grow very well. I started out with a hand full of black beans from a bag of store bought beans meant for eating. Last year I harvested a whole pound from my tiny garden and I'm growing more this year than last. I should just grow the black beans they do great and I could grow two crops a season if I start early enough.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 06:20 PM
Good luck, my fine Irish friend and potential ancestor.

My advice... grow into it. It is easy to go over board and get into it too big and become overwhelmed.

Grow into it and learn and grow as your experience grows... it is a lot cheaper that way too. Based on my experience, you will end up buying things you don't need or find ways to do it yourself cheaper and with recycled or reused trash/scrap... stuff.

As for heirloom seeds...RH Schumway offers heirloom seeds as does Pinetree Garden Seeds...the only potential problem is getting the seeds from the US to Ireland.

Also, it is really nice growing your own foods. We had a fresh garden salad n green leaf lettuces, spinach, carrots, green onions...won't be long before cabbages and broccoli come in...also have tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, corn planted...oh, and the obligatory red and white potatoes.

The savings in money is great.

Good luck gardening.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 06:22 PM
I live out in the country and we garden. The size of the garden varies from year to year depending on how ambitious we are.

It's fun and rewarding. Plus home grown veggies are the best.

posted on May, 2 2012 @ 06:30 PM
I've been growing a garden for years but this year will be the biggest yet.
I've also been supplying friends and family with plants and planted some tomatoes for a couple of senior 999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999999991 (Sorry cat on keyboard, lol) citizens we know that wanted some but couldn't get down to plant. (they can water them tho!)

it's all good. I know of some good seed suppliers - not sure if I can post them here or not, mods delete if need. I'm not afflilated with them, but I've ordered from ohio heirloom seeds and seed to success off ebay. Harry at Alchemy works has the best medicinals/mysticals that I know of. Anyway, I can vouch for those 3 companies that their seeds DO come up WELL.

BUT also, check your dollar store - ours has a lot of seeds 20 cents a pack, and usually if they are that cheap they are non-patented seeds.

Personally I don't worry about organic seeds. There's not going to be all that much pesticide residue IN a seed, IMO. Not enough to make me pay 3.00 more a pack. I worry about patent vrs nonpatented more. GMOs are going to be under patent. With nonpatented seeds you can save as many as you want, and legally sell seeds from the plants they produce.

posted on May, 3 2012 @ 04:22 AM
reply to post by SunflowerStar

Thank you for the information, I am realising that many people have been doing this for a long time. This only gives me encouragement to go for it.
I have not tried germinating my own seeds yet, but took seeds from a squash the other day and am drying them out. May try these for a starter. I have ordered a book on seed harvesting, hopefully it will help.
Great info, thank you very much.

posted on May, 3 2012 @ 04:25 AM
reply to post by artistpoet

Thank you artistpoet, it sounds like you have had a lot of experience in this field (no pun intended!)
A comercially sized polytunnel is a bit of a dream, but I can imagine bloody hard word even for several people.
I think mine will be 4m wide by 9 or 10 m long, big enough for 4 decent sized beds, and a strip for maybe farming my own trout, the polytunnel conditions seem ideal for this so I may well give it a try.

Thank you again.

posted on May, 3 2012 @ 04:28 AM
reply to post by MichiganSwampBuck

Good point, and I agree. Here, the hardier plants seem to do well, peas, beans, brassica etc, but the more delicate plants such as Aubergine, courgette, peppers etc, just don't take off in my current set up. Hopefully the polytunnel will correct this.
My bookshop in town also has a small coffee shop in it, and I really want to be able to offer, with a lunch, real home grown produce, picked from my garden, salads and soup and the like. Save the business a few pound then too!
Thanks again

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