Gardening is a healthful, relaxing hobby that can produce lush, colorful plants and flowers as well as fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables. It is easy to spend a lot of money when you begin to purchase seeds, plants, soil and tools to start a new garden. Fortunately, gardening can be a frugal pastime when you incorporate creativity.
Don't Buy Plants
Purchasing ready-to-plant flowers, vegetables and other garden plants can cost you a pretty penny and is usually unnecessary--there are many ways to acquire plants for little to nothing. Packets of seeds are highly affordable, and you can save your own seeds from flowers as well as fruits and vegetables in your kitchen. Recycle empty egg cartons into plant starter trays to help your seedlings indoors before the ground is ready in the spring. Ask friends and family members for cuttings of their garden offerings. You may even want to host a plant or seed swap with your neighbors and friends.
Adding compost to your soil provides nutrients that will help you grow flourishing plants. It also helps keep the soil aerated and prevents against disease. Composting is very cost effective, since you are using what would otherwise be garbage to benefit your garden. Keep a small, lidded container in your kitchen in which you can throw organic scraps such as fruit and vegetable peelings, eggshells and coffee grounds. Invest in a compost bin or create a simple compost pile and turn it once a week or so. When your compost looks like dark soil and has an earthy scent, add it to your soil.
Potted plants on your patio or throughout your yard add texture, visual appeal and give you more gardening space. Drill drainage holes in plastic buckets that contain household items such as cat litter or laundry detergent. Place some gravel in the bottom of the pails for better drainage before filling with soil. Look in your attic, garage or around the house for items that can be recycled into plant containers, such as coffee or olive oil cans, teapots, cowboy boots, an old dresser drawer or a cracked slow cooker. Use your imagine and create a frugal yet eclectic and eye-catching garden.