I haven’t updated the £5 a Month Veg Plot for a good few weeks now. There is one main reason for this: I haven’t spent very much money at all, and it’d be boring to talk about nothing happening. Even more boring than your standard Real Men Sow tales, in fact.
The other day I bought some radicchio seeds for 75p, and I’ve paid about three quid for canes when I visited the allotment shop. Unless my memory is failing me, that’s the sum total of my vegetable growing expenditure since the last update.
Free Potting Compost and Making Do from the Shed
I’m still making my own potting compost, and I’ve mainly been solving problems using things lying around in my shed. I’ve kept the pigeons at bay with lengths of scaffold netting I got hold of when there was some work going on at my offices, grown peas up what looks like an old fireguard that came with the house, and protected tender sowings from cold and slugs with plastic fruit punnets.
Much Cheaper than Riding a Bike
In a month where my road bike cost me £230 in parts to fix and I snapped my frame on the once-in-a-lifetime, worth-more-than-the-car mountain bike, being able to appreciate the thrifty beauty of gardening is very comforting. I love riding my bikes, I really do, but they’re blinkin’ expensive sometimes.
Frugalist’s Dream and a Sea Thrift Treat
Gardening, on the other hand, is a frugalist’s dream, and I don’t necessarily mean taking pride in finding useful bits and bobs in skips or growing on some cuttings. These are both very satisfactory practises, but we’re human and we all love to treat ourselves from time to time. Fortunately, us gardeners can indulge that in-built mechanism for just a few quid, and this is a wonderful quality in a hobby.
I ordered myself a box of sea thrift plants (pictured) in May, after loving the way they covered Lundy Island when we visited last year. I just got that burning feeling where I wanted to spend some money and have something nice.
Arriving home to the thrift parcel felt really rather exciting, as did the anticipation beforehand. It’s an amazing feeling to get such a buzz from something that only cost me £7.
Yet Another Reason to Love Gardening
You don’t find that in many other hobbies. Gardening is so accessible for everyone, and I often wonder if lots of people have started growing their own not because it saves them money on food, but because the hobby is cheap and barely costs a bean to get started.
With gardening, I can treat myself to a present once in a while, and the bank won’t get broken. Of course, if growing veg in the garden was an expensive hobby, I’d still do it. I’ve got the bug now and the allotmenteering means too much to me.
However, I need not fret about this because the spreadsheet says yes. Yet another reason to love this wonderful hobby of ours.