Thursday, April 26, 2012

Thrifty Thursday

I thought for today's post I would talk about frugal gardening.  It's that time of the year again when many want to get their hands in dirt and plant something.  But this can be very costly if you are not careful.

Some ways I've cut down on gardening costs this year is by doing the following:

► I saved all my planters from last year to reuse.  I know this sounds like a "duh" moment but generally, I've thrown them out.  I'm not talking about the heavy duty, expensive ones but the cheap, white plastic hangers.  Last year I decided to save them because as I was thinking about it, I realized how much cheaper it would be to just purchase some seeds or small plants and sow them directly into the planters.  I also wish I had kept the little 4-pack boxes that you get when you purchase vegetables or flowers because I could really use those right about now.

► This past weekend I was at the farmer's market selling bread and wandered over to another vendor who was selling plants.  I ended up spending $19 on flowers that would have cost me $48 in the store or garden center.  It was a church that was selling plants as a fundraiser.  So make sure you check out those little plant sales you see by the side of the road.  You never know when you will save money.

► I decided to start my seeds indoors this year rather than purchase the plants from the gardening center.  For $18 (the cost of seeds and those plastic mini-greenhouses with the dirt pellets) I have 144 plants growing.  The same amount of plants that I normally would purchase from the garden center would cost me $75.

► I was driving down a dirt road the other day when I saw three huge piles with a sign on them saying, free mulch, compost and chips for town residents.  I'm planning on going back with some garbage bags and getting some mulch or chips for my flower beds.  Look for those type of deals.

Or...

► See if a friend has some compost you can have for your garden.  Most people are happy to share and that will save you big!

► Start your own compost pile.  It's free.  It's easy.  It's good for the garden!

► Ask a friend if they have some flowers they are ready to separate and are willing to share.  I love receiving plants and never turn them down.  It's a way to make the yard beautiful with a low or no cost solution.

► Barter with a friend and see if they would be willing to come and till your garden rather than purchasing a tiller in exchange for some service you can do for them.

► This year I'm planning on saving my seeds and using them next year.

I'm sure there are lots of other ways you can save in this area.  Do you have anything you do to save money in the garden?

Don't forget tomorrow is Crafty Things and if you are working on a craft project, feel free to link up!