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52 Different Ways to Save $100 Per Year: Grow Some Of Your Food {Week 17}


Every week in 2013, I’m sharing a different way you can save $100 this year. If you do all of these things, you’ll be able to save over $5,000 this year alone! Many of these things will likely be things you’re already doing, but hopefully all of you will pick up at least a few new ideas or some inspiration from this series.

We all know that it’s usually much less expensive to grow our own food, than to buy it at the store. But it’s also a lot of work. And time is money, too.

So if you have more time than money right now and you have the space for a big garden, definitely go for it. However, if a big garden is just not feasible, here are a few money-saving options that might work for you:

1. Plant an herb garden.

Fresh herbs are so delicious and nutritious. Best of all, they are easy to plant and care for, too!

Growing up, I had an herb garden for a number of years and loved experimenting with different herbs, different recipes, and different drying techniques. I recommend choosing herbs that you use often in cooking. Otherwise, you’re going to end up with a lot of excess herbs that you might not really have a use for.

Tip: Here’s a quick way to freeze fresh herbs.

2. Only plant a few things.

This might seem like a no-brainer, but I think we often can get ambitious with gardening and then end up biting off more than we can keep up with.

Instead of planting 27 different things, think about what vegetables you use the most and consider just planting your top 3-4 favorites.

Sure, you won’t be able to fix entire meals mostly from your backyard, but if you don’t have to buy lettuce, tomatoes, or onions all summer long, that will help cut down your grocery bill some.

Tip: If you’re short on space, you might also look into Square Foot Gardening.

3. Look into community gardening.

Want to have a big garden, but don’t have the space or hours of time to devote to it? Consider starting or participating in a community garden.

These are all run differently, but basically it’s just a group of people who all go in together and work together to plant and take care of a garden — and then split the produce that grows.

This might be something you could do with extended family or a few neighbors or friends. Or, you could see if your community already has a community garden project that you could participate in.


4. Have your children plant their own gardens and then pay them for the produce.

Growing up, one of our favorite things about summer was planting our own little garden plots. It never seemed like work and I loved watching my plants grow and produce.

If you have children who will have free time this summer, this might be something to consider. And you can offer to pay them a dime or some similar small amount for every item they grow.

This can be a win-win situation: you get to enjoy garden fresh produce for much less than what you usually pay for it at the store, your kids stay busy, and they have a way to earn money, too!

5. Barter with someone who plants a garden.

If you don’t have any space or desire to plant a garden, another option for inexpensive produce is to barter with friends who have big gardens. Maybe you bake bread for them, or babysit, or mow their grass, or fix their appliance (or whatever your skills are) in exchange for their extra garden produce. I’ve also heard that many people find free garden produce offers on Craigslist and Freecycle.

More Gardening Articles:

Do you plant a garden? Why or why not?

photo credit #1, photo credit #2

30-Day House Cleaning Challenge: Project #30 Update

During the month of April, I’m encouraging my readers to participate in a 30-Day House Cleaning Challenge (read more here, if you missed my announcement about this challenge last week). Every week day morning at 9 a.m., I’ll post the daily project and every evening around 6 p.m. EST, I’ll post an update and link-up.

We made it to the finish line — woohoo! And today’s electronics cleaning project was quick and easy.

Thank you to everyone who so faithfully joined me in this challenge. I’m excited to start the Clutter-Busting Challenge tomorrow, aren’t you?

Join in the Chatter

::Want to blog about this challenge? If you’re blogging through this challenge with me, be sure to leave your link to your direct post on linky below. Plus, if you’d like to post your daily posts to the 30-Day House Cleaning Challenge Pinterest Group, just shoot me an email (moneysavingmom @ gmail dot com) and I’ll invite you.

::Want to follow along on Twitter or Instagram? I’ll also be sharing some of my cleaning pictures on my Facebook Page, my Twitter account, and my Instagram account. I’d love to have you do the same or join in the discussion on Twitter and Instagram. Just follow hashtag #Cleanin30 to see what others are tweeting and Instagramming about this challenge!

Today’s Walgreens Shopping Trip

My Walgreens shopping trip wasn’t much better than my Dillon’s shopping trip.

I had a little trouble locating the Happy & Healthy magazine where the battery coupon was in. But it wasn’t by the front door. Instead, they had them at the photo counter and the checkout counter.

So if you haven’t been to Walgreens yet to get the battery deal, just know that you might need to scout out the store a little to find the Happy & Healthy magazine (the battery coupon is at the very back, by the way).

Our store only had a few packs of batteries left, so I got two of them. Maybe I need to start shopping on Monday. 🙂

Here’s how the deal works:

Walgreens Batteries are on sale Buy One, Get One Free this week. Plus, there is a coupon to get Walgreens batteries for $0.99 per package in the Happy & Healthy coupon booklet. So you can pair these two deals together and get batteries for just $0.50 per package!

In the end, I paid $1.09 (including tax) for the two packages of batteries. Not bad!

See more deals at Walgreens this week here.

Today’s Dillon’s Shopping Trip

Ever have shopping trips that feel pretty much like a bust? That was my shopping trip at Dillon’s (Kroger affiliate) today.

I stopped by because I was hoping to pick up some of the free Veggie Chips. But alas, the Veggie Chips were priced at $2.99 (if I’m remembering correctly. Whatever it was, it was definitely not $0.99!). I’m hoping maybe they go on sale tomorrow when the new ad comes out?

In addition, I was hoping to pick up some $0.99 Finish Powerball Tabs. But the Finish was on the very top shelf and all the ones with peelies on them were at the very back of the shelf and impossible for a short person like me to reach.

I thought about asking for someone to help me, but there were no tall people in sight and I hated to flag down someone at the store to get them for me just so I could get the ones with peelies on them… since there were plenty without peelies on right within easy reach. I guess I have limits as to what I’ll do for the sake of saving money — especially if it involves a little bit of a strange request from a store worker. 🙂

But I did find the Rice Dream priced at $2.29 and I still had the $2/1 coupons. I know it’s supposed to be free at Walmart and that you can make your own Homemade Rice Milk for pennies, but I was planning to use rice milk in the Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free waffles tonight, so I figured it wouldn’t hurt to pick them up. And then at least my trip wasn’t entirely in vain.

Sometimes, my shopping trips don’t turn out like I plan, but that’s okay. One good thing is that the not-so-good shopping trips make the great shopping trips seem even better! 🙂