Grow Food For FREE Today 🍃
Have you wanted to start growing your own food, but not sure where to start or financially it feels out of reach? Then fear not, the path to green abundance is cheaper than you think.
Growing food can actually be FREE or a take a small investment once you have your patch established.
The core tools you need are a small list, which includes, seeds, compost, fertilizer, some basic tools. Everything else you can improvise and if you are growing organically, even better, because there are a ton of free ways to improve your growing.
So if you have a low starting budget here are 7 key tips to get you started with your growing journey.
#1 Join a Community Growing Project
This option will set you back a possible joining fee, but once you are in, you join a whole band of growers, with varying expertise and the infrastructure already possibly set up to get growing straight away. Usually, with a community project, you work together on the land and get to share the harvest with your members and the local community. It can also be a brilliant social exercise if you want to meet new friends. Plus you’ll usually be giving back to the local community by providing a healthy green space for all ages to play and grow.
#2 Use Recycled Growing Pots
You really don’t need to buy any special pots to grow your plants. The best organic gardeners, use what they have available. So all those toilet roll tubes you chuck away, start saving them. A daily newspaper can make an excellent first growing pod, egg cartons, metal tins with holes in, old yogurt pots and just about any container can make an excellent first germinating pot.
#3 Make Your Own Compost
This may sound harder than you think, but today there are special bags you can buy, that allow you to mix up your organic waste and make an excellent growing medium for your seeds and plants. If you already recycle your green waste, then this is just a bonus step. There's a little art to making sure you have the perfect mix. Mix together in equal parts of fruit and veg with coffee grounds, egg shells, shredded paper, wood chips, garden waste and this will make the perfect mix.
#4 Grow From Scraps
Did you know you can grow from scaps?
You can really be a hero in zero waste, by recycling you've table scraps and replanting them to grow again. This method is like taking a cutting of your favorite flower, instead, you use the head of the plant to regrow into another full sized plant. Growers have seen success with everything from potatoes, pineapples, celery, ginger, garlic, lettuce, cabbages, bok choy, lemongrass and so much more.
#5 Seed Swap
This will need you to have some seeds already, but once you have a stash, you can join a local seed swap club. These are a great way to get a variety of free seeds, because who needs 500 lettuces right? Some clubs even giveaway or share their cuttings of bigger plants, that would ordinarily take a long time to grow to full size. If you are trying to grow organic, you may want to seek out a heritage seed club to get the best local heritage seed for your patch. Heritage seeds are original unmodified seeds usually grown for centuries in the local environment, so the seed is perfect for organic growing.
#6 Save Your Organic Seeds
The cheapest way to acquire seeds, especially if you buy organic fruits and vegetables is to save the seeds. If your organic food has been grown locally, with organic seed, it means the seeds will have the ability to germinate if dried and potted up with some quality compost. Minimalist growers have successfully grown cucumbers, pumpkins, peppers, tomatoes, courgettes, lettuces and even potatoes.
# 7 Free Fertilizer
There is an abundance of choice when it comes to free organic fertilizers. This is one of the most exciting aspects of free growing is that you can use so much to boost your plant's growth.
Spending a day at a beech full of seaweed?
Gather it up and use to make a seaweed concentrate fertilizer. The mix is so potent and your plants will love it.
Do you have an open fire?
Use the wood ash to spread on your soil.
Do you drink coffee?
Then save coffee grounds and add to your plants as a fertilizing mulch.
This one is a little gross, but urine added to your compost will activate your compost and make it decompose quicker and you’ll be left with a rich nutrient dense feed for your plants.
Do you live near a farm?
Then go ask for some manure, chances are the farmer will love you for helping him shift the pile. The only thing to check if you are trying to grow organic is if the farmers use vaccinations or hormones on the animals, this will be present in the manure and then will leach into soil and into your plants.
We hope this helps you on your growing journey and if you like what you read, drop us a comment and say hello or you can join our community newsletter,
Grow With Love
- Louise Sullivan