Friday, July 4, 2014

How Much Does a Garden Grow: June 2014

First things first:  If you are looking for my recent article in Grit, check it out here.  And remember that the magazine is the July/August issue and is available on the newsstand, so feel free to pick up a copy or six!

Now, onto the real purpose of our post today:  how much the garden grew in June.  June was extremely wet for our part of Ohio; I don't keep a weather journal, but I would say it rained for most if not for a significant number of the days of the month.  And many of these rains were of the "torrential downpour" variety.  I have a couple of pepper plants in some small pots I've forgotten to drill drainage holes in, and it is becoming a regular task to go outside and dump excess water from the peppers, then hope they can survive living in a marsh.  The rain has delayed some crops that are already delayed from the cool spring, so I have a number of tomato plants that are just now setting fruit and I've yet to see my first cucumber.  The first tomato, however, came in the first part of July from our Tennessee transplants.  You'll have to wait til next month to see how all that fairs!

In any case, we started harvesting modestly but in earnest this month.  Our harvests include:

  • Carrots:  Organic carrots are cheap right now at the store ($0.89/pound), making my little harvests of thinnings a pretty modest savings.  I pulled 9 ounces of baby carrots over the month for us to eat, which comes out to be $0.54.  
  • Potatoes:  Again, organic potatoes are very affordable here right now, at $1.28/pound.  I did our first big potato harvest of the season, digging up the half-trench and emptying two containers, and I wound up with 60 ounces of potatoes for a value of $6.40.  However, since all of these potatoes were grown from potatoes that had started to sprout in my potato bin (that is, not purchased seed potatoes), this was a pretty enjoyable way to recoup some food waste.
  • Blueberries:  Aargh!  Organic blueberries are pretty expensive here at $0.29/ounce, and my plants set lots of fruit.  Unfortunately, the critters have gotten to most of it, so I've only gotten to enjoy 9 ounces for a savings of $2.32.  I have a tent over the blueberries to protect them from birds; I don't know what else I can do to deter the chipmunks that like to dig into the tent and pull on the branches.
  • Basil:  Fresh basil is not even available in my regular stores yet, let alone an organic variety, so I am using last year's price of $1/ounce.  I accidentally harvested an ounce by knocking the top off one of my plants with the weed whacker.  (Oops!)  Anyway, the fresh basil was yummy.
With no expenses for the month, we harvested 6.125 pounds of produce for a dollar value of $10.26, in spite of the rain.  Our cumulative totals are:

Cumulative Totals
Total Ounces Harvest: 118
Pounds: 7.375

Total Value of Harvest: $23.30
Expenditures: -284.24

Total: $-260.94
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