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 Post subject: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:17 pm 
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Baking In The Flavor
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Is it worth growing carrots in my garden when they're $5.99 for a 10 LB Organic bag at Costco? It would take up 8 feet in my garden just to grow that amount and that would mean 3 months I could be growing something else... like kale.

Anyone else face this question when planning your garden? So little space, so many vegetables.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:30 pm 
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Every time I start thinking about it like that, I buy a new container.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:52 pm 
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Carrots from the garden are a special sort of delicious. Kale I can't taste the difference between the farmers market bunch and what I grow.

Home grown onions are super tasty.

Always tomatoes.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 8:21 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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I face that same question when I want to grow something like say, cukes or squash. I know my co-workers plant more than they can eat and I get those things from them. I'm making a resolve to grow the more expensive things. This year I did grow carrots-(I haven't downloaded pics yet), and they are pretty small, but they're mine, they are non GMO, and I learned that it is best to grow them in succession. If something is rare and costly, I generally won't buy it. There are things that aren't native to Indiana like avocados and bananas that I know are imported and I usually find them at the food bank I use or on sale at the store. I can live with that. Many times fruit or veggies with minor imperfections which make them ineligible for supermarket sale will also be given to the food bank or thrown away! Sad, but true--and a big yay for me! Example--one of the rabbis in town has a composting project and he collects-(I suspect he dumpster dives, how punk rock is that?) restaurant and grocery store stuff. He sets a ton of it aside and gives some to me: eggplant, green beans, onions, carrots, and you just wouldn't believe what businesses throw away.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 10:38 am 
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I gave up on carrots....in my small space even the smaller varieties never got to a good size. But pretty much all my decisions are limited to my space, so whatevs.

Is it worth it to grow a lemon tree in a container? Lemons are cheap and I've failed with two trees already....they are very picky about everything seemingly.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 10:46 am 
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I have more gardening space than the average bear simply by virtue of owning a home with a backyard, but this still comes up a lot.

I've come to the conclusion that it's simply not worthwhile to grow peas, carrots, any kind of cruciferous vegetable, or any kind of leafy greens in my garden because the harvest we get after the bugs and birds have taken their share simply doesn't justify the amount of space the plants take up. I eat all of those veggies every single day, so it's just easier to go to the farmers' market and buy them when they're in season -- and usually go without when they're not -- than it is to grow them and still have to go to the farmers' market because we managed to devour all of what we grew in like 3 days.

What I consider totally worthwhile to grow at home: raspberries, strawberries, all herbs except possibly cilantro because it bolts like crazy, tomatoes, peppers, snap beans, cucumbers. I have yet to find a melon variety that works in my climate, but I've been trying like hell for the past four years because I have never in my life enjoyed a fresh, sun-warmed, perfectly ripened, just-picked melon of any kind, and it needs to happen ASAP.

NB these opinions are heavily biased because I live in a major urban center in a part of America that's renowned for its fertile soils and high crop output, and there are around a half-dozen truly wonderful farmers' markets within biking distance of my house, and over 20 in my county alone (farthest away is probably a 15-minute drive). If the only way I could get freshly-picked sugar snap peas was to grow them at home, I'd definitely do that.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 11:04 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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MT--your lemon tree question? Yes. The manager of the WWMA store is a citrus tree freak:

http://blog.wormsway.com/post/Edible-Fr ... doors.aspx

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 11:13 am 
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*sigh*

I do want one! Because they are pretty and remind me of my great grandmama (who had a gigantor one in Canada that I legally couldn't take over the border when she died) but....they were expensive to buy and frustrating to dote on constantly.

I will probably try again though...so thank you for the link of helpful hints!

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 2:50 am 
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Is it worth it to plant a fig tree in my garden? I live in South Western England (wet, windy, sunny, a little colder than it should be as we are at the top of a very big hill)… and there were fig trees in pots in the supermarket. Will it fruit? I'm fairly certain it won't, as Autumn seems to have started in August this year. It would be replacing the godawful mahonia that haunts our lawn. I might do so anyway. I hate that mahonia.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:08 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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Hey Gulliver,

Here's some awesome information from the Royal Horticulture Society:

http://apps.rhs.org.uk/advicesearch/Pro ... px?pid=106

I'm inclined to say no because of the climate in the UK, but anything is possible. Point in case: the pawpaw tree. It is native to tropical climates, but they grow in parts of Indiana which has a hot summer, but very cold winters.

Since I work in the hydro field, I'm always gunning for trying those kinds of things indoors where the climate can be controlled. Since you're replicating mother nature, you need to make sure all components are present: light, time under light, temp, humidity, nutrients, and pollination of flowers so fruits are set.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:08 am 
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Well Figs grow happily here in Portland, and they grew pretty alright in Vancouver, BC, too. I think it will grow fine. It's possible it might not make very delicious fruit, of that it won't fully ripen... But you'll still have a beautiful fig tree.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 4:12 pm 
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jewbacca wrote:
This year I did grow carrots-(I haven't downloaded pics yet), and they are pretty small, but they're mine, they are non GMO, and I learned that it is best to grow them in succession.


Can you elaborate on grow in succession? xo in advance.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:10 pm 
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I believe she means planting seeds every few weeks instead of just once so they don't all mature at the same time.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 5:20 pm 
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Ooooh. Ya, that would have been a smart move.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 8:16 pm 
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ol' garly cooch
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It's a good idea to do that with onions and lettuces too!

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:11 pm 
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Yup! Noted for next time! Thank you.


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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:32 pm 
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Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/Sa ... oGrow.aspx

They recommend herbs, lettuce, vine vegetables, and bell peppers, and fruit trees if you have the space.

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 Post subject: Re: Is it worth it to grow __________ in my garden?
PostPosted: Sat Aug 13, 2011 12:03 am 
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I gave up on carrots after the first season. If I had more space I'd do them, but the return on the investment wasn't nearly as much as it was for greens. With carrots, you plant them and there is a long growing season and then you pull them up to harvest and start all over again. With leafy greens you don't have to pull it out of the ground to harvest. You can continue to cut off the greens as needed and the plant will continue to grow new leaves. I keep the plant going until it bolts or the leaves become tough. In the case of kale and especially some of the more exotic greens, it's a very good investment.

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