How to save money by growing your own vegetables
With the cost of living increasing and energy prices soaring, it’s no surprise that people are beginning to look for easy ways to save money - and what better way to do this than to slash your weekly food bill by growing your own vegetables at home?
Go on, give it a grow!
What are the best vegetables to grow at home?
To help increase your chance of a successful harvest, here are the top 10 easiest vegetables to grow in the UK:
- Green beans
- Tomatoes (particularly bush variety or cherry)
- Chard, spinach, or kale
Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or this is your first time starting a vegetable garden, it’s always a good idea to choose easy-to-grow vegetables that are quick to crop and hardy – particularly with how unpredictable the British weather can be!
When is the best time to plant vegetables?
With just the right amount of sun and rain, spring provides ideal growing conditions for many seasonal favourites. The vast majority of UK vegetables are sown between March and June, so there's no better time than now!
Not too sure when to plant your vegetables? To help you out, we've created the ultimate spring planting calendar:
Follow this fool-proof planting plan, and it won't be long before your plate is bursting with a kaleidoscope of colours from your delicious, fresh produce!
How much money can I save by growing my own vegetables?
A study by Which? shows you could save a huge amount on both fruits and vegetables by growing them at home.
According to their research, it costs about 83p to grow 1kg of mangetout at home. However, if you were to buy the same amount from the supermarket, it could cost you a whopping £7! That's a massive saving of £6.17 per kg, just by growing it yourself!
But it's not just mangetout that can help to cut costs; there are loads of household favourites you can save on by making the swap from shop-bought to home-grown.
With potential savings of up to £12.50 on various produce, it's fair to say it's worth your while giving home-growing a go!
What do I need to start growing vegetables?When it comes to gardening, there seem to be just as many tools and gadgets as there are varieties of plants… so what do you really need to start your own vegetable patch?
Despite the huge range on offer, you don’t actually need shed loads of gear to grow your own veggies. Stick to these basic essentials and save yourself storage space and money in the process!
Must-have toolsTo get started, you'll need some quality hand tools. If you’re not too sure what to go for, we recommend choosing an all-in-one gardening tool set. Cost-effective and convenient, these handy kits come complete with all the tools you need to prepare, plant and pick your crops – perfect for beginners.
Alternatively, if you have some tools already and aren’t looking for a complete set, you can always buy the ones you need individually. For a vegetable patch, it's a good idea to have all of the following tools:
A gardening staple, watering tools are a must to keep your veg thriving, especially in the drier months. To help save on your water bill, we recommend going for a good ol’ trusty watering can. Said to cost about a third of the price of a hose, as they use far less water to do the same job, they're ideal if you're looking to save some extra pennies!
Vegetable grow bagsGrow bags provide a simple way to grow vegetables in a compact space. Suitable for many different types of veg, these bags come with built-in drainage holes, preventing waterlogging and root rot. When the season is over, just fold the bag away ready for next year!
Of course, you can’t start a vegetable garden without planting seeds! Many household favourites – from little gem lettuce to carrots – can be sown from March onwards, ready for harvesting in the early summer. Find your favourites and maybe even try out some new varieties!
Top tip: If you plan to plant fast-growing veggies like courgettes, cucumbers, salad leaves and radishes, sow small quantities of seed at intervals to get a continuous harvest.