Why we should all grow our own veg

Chatting to Indira Naidoo (author of The Edible Balcony) about urban farming at the Australian Garden Show was inspiring.  You can catch our interview here but thought I would summarise the points that have really got me thinking.

We all have the space
We really do all have enough space for one or two pots, or even a vertical garden, even on the smallest balcony.  In that space we should all be growing most of the herbs and salad plants we need to eat.

With changing climate and increasing population, there is a decrease in available farming land.  Imagine if we free up the land currently used for common herbs and salads for more important foods.

Think of the savings - $500 a year sound good?
I estimate that we personally save $5-$10 a week growing our own herbs and salad, we just don't need to buy them anymore.  This is an annual saving of at least $260 a year on herbs alone, around $500 if you include salads which are our most reliable and rewarding crop.

Last summer we never had to buy tomatoes or watermelon either.  Even with the cost of planting we probably saved around $700 over the year.   Makes good sense and good cents too. 

Pick only what you need - less waste
Nothing tastes as good as fresh picked, we all know that.  But another bonus is that you only ever pick what you need.  When you buy you often buy more than you need and then end up throwing away what you didn't use.  Grow your own and there is far less waste.

Enjoy seeing children eating fresh out the garden
We joke that we let Miss J out to graze.  She eats handfuls of sugar snap peas fresh off the vine, tomatoes still warm from the sun, strawberries (usually before they are properly ripe), even sticks of celery snapped off the plant.  

Could anything be better than growing your own?   I have just planted these small sweet watermelon's - Sugar Baby.  They are an heirloom variety and you can get them at The Little Veggie Patch Co or Gurneys.  Last year we loved the watermelon crop and would have had more if our irrigation had been working better.  Every time it rained they doubled in size over night!  This year I am trying to grow them from seed rather than seedlings, lets hope it works!

Please share your success stories, I would love some sure fire winners for this season.

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