Sunday, May 18, 2008

Garden Math

I calculate the cost of EVERYTHING.

When I worked it was easier, as I sat next to a calculator all day long. Deanna would call to discuss something (financial or not) and more often than not she could hear me tapping away.

"Um, did you know those individual applesauce containers cost you 34% more than a jar"

"Um thanks....."

One place I don't add up costs is in the garden. Granted, I don't spend like a madwoman but if I budget a certain amount for plants, know I'm gonna spend it.

Today at the garden store I bought a bunch of vegetables. The 6 packs were more than they have ever been. $2.99 a six pack. Individual plants were $1.49. Hmmm..... I did the math-$1.49 each or $0.50 each. In some cases I didn't care and bought the single plants, in others, I economized and bought the 6 pack (though I remember what 6 zucchini did last year!) I may try and plant some zucchini at my parents and in-laws.

A six pack of broccoli means $.50 a head for broccoli (organic the way I grow it) vs $2.50 in the grocery store (non-organic) plus the little side shoots that can be sauteed or used in a salad. At least I like to look at it that way. I'm not adding up the soil I just purchased or the water that I use watering or the bricks I plan on buying to edge the beds. Some things I just don't want to look too closely at. I know it's fuzzy math as they say, but I don't even care. I don't garden to save money (though I am CERTAIN I do) Just don't ask me how I know, because truthfully I don't.

This year I've planted (or purchased today to plant) the following so far:
Garlic
Horseradish
Strawberries
Onions
Sugar Snap Peas
Regular Peas
Turnips
Broccoli
Broccoli Rabe
1 cauliflower
Thyme
Spinach
Arugula
Sage
New to me-Kohlrabi and Colorful Swiss Chard
Some kind of surprise squash
Cherry Peppers
Sweet Peppers
Leeks
Parsley
Rosemary
3 kinds of Tomatoes
Scarlet Runner Beans
Zucchini
Watercress
Carrot
Salad Greens

4 comments:

lightening said...

You can't really compare costs when it comes to homegrown vs bought can you? It's hard to calculate taste, freshness and greater nutrition into the equation.

I see the bigger purchases as an investment over a longer term too. You don't have to rebuy soil every year (perhaps some top up but that's it).

I'm still pretty new to gardening myself but I think I might be addicted!!!!

Christine said...

Be careful-It will take you over!!! I think my husband used the word "obsessed" last night to describe it.

Thanks for those comments! Those are exactly the things that I didn't say in the post that I should have and how I feel about it.

Actually the reason I left them out is probably because I was hurrying top post it so that I could get out and plant my broccoli between the raindrops!

Deanna said...

I miss you and your calculator!

Christine said...

Oh it still works! It just takes me longer to get to it these days. PLEASE-Call me with a financial question, I'm dying to calculate something :-)