One way to help the environment as well as saving money is to start your own vegetable garden. That can be costly if you buy all your seeds, defeating the purpose. Matthew Davies looks at different ways to grow your own garden from grocery bought vegetables.
How to save seed for better vegetables
Starting your garden requires some essentials. Having proper soil and the right tools is essential. Buying seeds, not so much. Store bought vegetables have all the ingredients needed to grow them, free of cost. It may take a little longer, but having a supply of seeds at your disposal, knowing exactly what your vegetable will taste like is wonderful. Knowing you can provide food from discarded parts that would normally go in the trash, is quite fulfilling.
- Celery, green onions and leeks – The butt of those vegetables are the roots. Once cut, the roots stay intact. Wrapping the root in a piece of paper towel, in an open container with about half an inch of water at the bottom sitting on a window sill will regrow the roots, and you will have a new vegetable grow in a few weeks.
- Potatoes – A single potato can grow into a plant that will yield much more. Once a potato starts to grow “eyes”, we would normally throw that potato out, as it is beginning to spoil. That is, however, a potato starting to grow roots again. By giving it access to water, helping the root system grow again, as well as potting soil, you will grow a potato plant that will yield potatoes for years to come.
- Tomatoes, cucumbers, and “wet” seeds – Fruits and vegetables that have wet seeds, such as raspberries, tomatoes, and cucumbers, need a little more care and time. Simply planting the vegetable in the grown will not necessarily yield a plant. By removing the seeds from your vegetable, letting them air dry for a few weeks, then saving them for spring, you will be able to grow your favorite vegetable. Year after year, keeping the seeds from your best yielding plant, or your tastiest plant will allow you to select the traits you like.
- Leafy greens – Lettuce, kale, and cabbage are all very easy to grow once you have used the part you eat. The normally discarded heel is the part you want to keep if you are going to grow them. Using the same open container method as for celery, you want to keep the heel upright, with the bottom part in water to help grow a new root system. Once the root system is present, planting your newly grown vegetable in potting soil will give it all it needs to blossom.
Matthew Davies knows that starting your garden is a long process that will take tender loving care. Selecting your seeds can be a daunting process for those of us who do not have the knowledge that comes with years of experience. Getting your seeds out of the fruits and vegetables you know you love is the best way to make sure your garden will yield everything you love.