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How much do you reckon to save by growing your own?

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  • How much do you reckon to save by growing your own?

    I was reading another thread (sorry canít remember which one or who left the comment) but someone said they didnít save any money by having a plot, they just did it for the love of it. Now I spend somewhere between £100-£150 per year on my allotment, which includes rent, all my seeds and all the odds and sods and little emergencies that plot life throws at me. My plot is totally organic so I check the prices of veg at the local farmers market and I have to say Iím saving hundreds of pounds a year at least. For instance, squash at the fm is £3 a kilo, I grew about 40 kilo last year which means just on squashes alone Iíve already broken even at least, (and yes we do eat a lot of squash, my missus is vegan, I eat a bit of fish but otherwise vegetarian). I grow everything from seed, except the occasional grafted tomato and aubergine, which I buy at the end of May when they tend to be half price or less. This year I am going to keep a record of my yields and as I have to walk through the farmers market on my way to the plot Iíll keep an eye on their prices, and get a much better idea of how much I actually save. Has anybody else done this? If so how much do you save?
    I may be hungry but I sure ainít weird

  • #2
    I'm not sure I will break even this year, but next year I think I will. Considering how many friends want to buy fresh veggies off me already, I might even make a profit.
    https://nodigadventures.blogspot.com/

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    • #3
      Not sure if I save money or not. I grow in my garden rather than an allotment so should have less costs, although i spent money initially on restructuring the garden e.g. we built raised beds, bought tons of topsoil, bought a greenhouse etc. Now that we have that in place my outgoings are much less so probably saving some money. Reckon the amount i didn't spend on shop bought tomatoes alone last year would be considerable.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Gordon the gardener View Post
        For instance, squash at the fm is £3 a kilo, I grew about 40 kilo last year which means just on squashes alone Iíve already broken even at least, (and yes we do eat a lot of squash, my missus is vegan, I eat a bit of fish but otherwise vegetarian).
        Even if you eat a lot of squash would really have bought 40Kgs of it ? Can you honestly say the year before you spent £120 on squash ... There's a huge difference between the value of the food grown and savings you make by growing it, the two are often confused.

        There's no way Id buy all the stuff I grow it just wouldn't be financially viable so I don't actually save by growing it, but I do get to eat it when otherwise I wouldn't.

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        • #5
          I've done it for a couple of years - my savings worked out to be around £500/year, though my produce is organic, quite often the stuff that costs more to buy than to grow (saffron, raspberries, gooseberries) and the prices were for supermarket non-organic produce. If you add in the time spent there is no way it works out as a profit, but then that's not really why we do it, is it?
          Last edited by sparrow100; 07-03-2019, 10:13 PM.
          http://mudandgluts.com - growing fruit and veg in suburbia

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          • #6
            I've never added it up, but my greenhouse probably needs another year before it's paid for itself, my wealth comes from the healthy exercise and food.
            If I'm not on here, I'm probably fishing.

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            • #7
              I don't buy tomatoes, cucumbers, courgettes, beans or lettuce - ever, even in winter, on principle, as I know there'll be plenty in summer.
              Nor do I buy rhubarb, strawberries, raspberries or apples as I grow enough of all these veg & fruit for myself and family. More than enough, actually, and end up giving a lot of it away.

              If I put a value on, say, all the apples, it would be a lot of money - but I don't eat all of them so the value is meaningless.

              I grow in my garden so the only expenditure is on seeds, plants and compost. My aim is to be able to eat something I've grown every day of the year - which subsidises my food bills. If I can do that, I'm happy.

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              • #8
                I hadn’t calculated the financial value of my produce until tonight, but I had recorded my harvests for the myharvest project so I could work it out ;-)
                It came to over £500 - though like lardman I would never have bought many of these things at shop prices (eg 12kg fresh blackberries, 6kg mangetout), and I don’t know how much of that produce I gave away.

                So, it’s a slightly profitable hobby, earning me a few quid each week, but wouldn’t be a viable business venture if I had to pay myself minimum wage!

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Lardman View Post
                  Even if you eat a lot of squash would really have bought 40Kgs of it ? Can you honestly say the year before you spent £120 on squash ... There's a huge difference between the value of the food grown and savings you make by growing it, the two are often confused.

                  There's no way Id buy all the stuff I grow it just wouldn't be financially viable so I don't actually save by growing it, but I do get to eat it when otherwise I wouldn't.
                  Agree totally.

                  Plus, and I hope this doesn't come across badly, I don't actually care if growing my own costs me more or less than I'd spend in the shops. For me personally, the rewards are more than financial.

                  Edited to add: If I had to include the cost of my time, no way would I come out in profit!
                  Last edited by Snoop Puss; 07-03-2019, 10:34 PM.
                  Living in north-east Spain, where the sun is too hot, the rain too torrential, the hail too big, the wind too windy and the snow too deep.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Gordon the gardener View Post
                    I was reading another thread (sorry canít remember which one or who left the comment) but someone said they didnít save any money by having a plot, they just did it for the love of it........ Has anybody else done this? If so how much do you save?
                    I always remember Mrs Dobby used to show her accounting
                    https://www.growfruitandveg.co.uk/gr...tml#post467950

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                    • #11
                      I've just read Mrs Dobby's accounts!!
                      Rhubarb £1 a stick 10 years ago
                      2850 plants. I wouldn't have the fingers to count that many'

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                      • #12
                        Will probably make a financial profit if I stay in one place! I had my old plot in Manchester for just over 2 years, spent a lot on compost, a polytunnel, netting, seeds/plants mostly. Did reap lots of squash, cucumbers, potato which reduced the food bill. But still made a huge financial loss in theory.

                        This/last year saved about £100 on potato, courgs, toms, pumpkins, beans, onions, green leafies - but I also bought a new shed, another poly, netting, more seeds, heating mat, fruit trees, etc at end of season so going to be years before I break even.
                        I just won't buy things like squash, courgs, beans, toms anymore which in itself is a saving.

                        Sadly will likely relocate in a couple years and it starts over again...
                        https://beingbears.wordpress.com

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                        • #13
                          ^^^ Remember, itís not all about the balance sheet.

                          Sense of satisfaction from growing your own=money canít buy

                          Friendship and community-ness = money canít buy

                          The smile on your face when youíve cleared a new patch of ground, harvested your first/best (name crop), shifted that last bucket of manure, wrestled out that bramble root etc = priceless

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Thelma Sanders View Post
                            I always remember Mrs Dobby used to show her accounting
                            https://www.growfruitandveg.co.uk/gr...tml#post467950
                            I wonder if Mrs Dobby did up sticks and move to New Zealand. Does anybody know?
                            Endless wonder.

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by veggiechicken View Post
                              I grow in my garden so the only expenditure is on seeds, plants and compost. My aim is to be able to eat something I've grown every day of the year - which subsidises my food bills. If I can do that, I'm happy.
                              I'm the same, I grow in my back garden, my GH was a freebie I don't spend much at all most of my seeds are saved.. I do have a year round supply of lettuce so from just that I know I'm in profit.

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