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Why We All Need Our Own Gardens

Updated on January 24, 2012

My father has been growing a small vegetable garden in his side yard for years now. I always just thought that it was a hobby until I had to take care of it while my parents were out of town. I cannot believe how much I pick out of it. About every other day, my wife and I probably picked at least three or four pounds of produce. This was out of a garden that is only about 100 square feet. My father is growing green peppers, a couple of types of tomatoes, beans, cucumbers, eggplant, you name it. He is rotating crops and really seems to have it down. I actually picked 8 green peppers off of one plant on Sunday, and got 5 more on Tuesday. This really got me interested in starting a small garden at my own house.

The benefits of having your own garden are simple. Growing your own veggies is cheap, really cheap. Yes, you may need to buy some fertilizer, seeds and your water bill may go up a buck or two each month, but how much would baskets full of fresh produce cost each week? There are a number of other non-monetary benefits, including the health benefits of eating locally produced, organic vegetables.

The only issues that I have are the changing seasons and the problem of bugs and animals destroying your hard work. Where I live the winters can be quite harsh, and that makes growing vegetables only last a few months. Second, my father is constantly battling insects and rabbits. Now, I understand that I may have to resort to pesticides, but I really want to avoid them at all costs. We also have a large rabbit population around my home. I love watching them play and would hate to start thinking of them as the enemy. I looked into a few different ideas, such as building my garden up a few feet to keep the animals out to different fencing ideas. None of which really addressed all of my issues.

My wife brought up how she was able to grow plants year round at college in their greenhouse. A greenhouse would be perfect, but could I actually find one that fit my space and my budget. Well, yes. I did a little research into different greenhouse kits and found that you can buy just about every size imaginable. There are little ones that you simply hinge up the top of to larger ones that actually have doors. There are also some really cool watering kits that you can integrate into them. I haven’t bought one yet, but will let you know about my success or failure.

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