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Frugal Gardening Tips and Tricks

By: Joshua Unseth-- 2010-05-27 12:00 am --

One of the latest trends that has come to the forefront in the past year is thriftiness. Saving a few bucks here and there adds up over the long haul. Many have taken to home gardening to shave their grocery bills down and that's a positive step in the right direction. There are a couple of things you can do to maximize the effectiveness of a home garden.

Homemade Fertilizer
Supplies like mulch, fertilizer and other equipment from the garden supply store can be really pricey and negate a lot of the cost saving effects of growing your own vegetables. The big number one tip is composting. Almost every bit of organic scraps and leftovers from your kitchen can go into a compost pile in the backyard. Whether it's old coffee grounds, peanut shells or grapefruit rinds, all will make for productive and nutrient-rich soil for your personal garden.

DIY Supplies
You can use old cardboard egg containers as seed starting pods for seedlings. For trellising and other structures, lumber yards are a great place to find surplus wood. Many local businesses will gladly let you rummage through their refuse heap and take away old pallets and other unneeded wood that you can use for fencing or supports. If you'd really like to take the whole concept to the next level, some relatively cheap sheet plastic and scrap lumber can be used for a no-frills, do-it-yourself greenhouse so you can get started earlier without the risk of losing plants to frost.

Seeds, Odds and Ends
While Home Depot and other mega-stores will usually have a decent selection of seeds and starter plants in the spring for you to buy, consider shopping for bulk seeds online to save some extra cash. Amazon can ship you seeds for every type of produce imaginable for free, so if you're a regular customer and order from them frequently you may as well pick up some of your gardening supplies from them. They also ship tools like trowels, spades and the like.

These are just a few ways to start up a great low-cost, organic garden on a budget. For more helpful information, Garden Guides offers plenty of advice on the choice of vegetables and plants you can grow, as well as tips and advice to get the most out of them. Fellow gardeners in your area are also a terrific sounding board for advice and ideas, so make sure to hit up message boards and forums as well as the local farmers' market. If you plan it out right, you can get a superb home garden going for next to nothing, allowing you to eat better and save on fresh vegetables in the long run. So, what are some other good ideas for the perfect money-saving home garden?