Some people are a fan of the great outdoors and some aren’t, however many of us can tailor our gardens to be suitable for our needs in the summer months with; decking, chairs, plants, barbecues and many different items. We also know that there’s been a big push by the government to promote healthy eating for families as the number of obese children and adult’s rises, while a whopping 55% of 40-60 are classed as overweight.
Most households will do a weekly shop whether that be online or at the supermarket, however there are alternatives that can be cost effective when purchasing stable parts of the diet.
Grow your own
Have you ever thought of growing your own fruit and vegetables at home? Many of the UK population are of the belief that it isn’t the right climate to grow your own but this isn’t the truth. With the right due care and attention it’s possible to grow anything from Artichokes to Tomatoes. A few purchases in the short-term can really bring a long term benefit to ensure those hard earned pounds last for a little longer.
Greenhouse 6ft x 4ft £169.99 http://www.primrose.co.uk/lacewing-6ft-4ft-essential-silver-aluminium-frame-greenhouse-with-base-p-73390.html?cPath=696_3595_3746&src=list_img#style=&size_width=&size_length=&frame_material=&glazing_type=&brands=&min=0&max=250
Greenhouse 6ft x 8ft £249.99 http://www.primrose.co.uk/lacewing-6ft-8ft-essential-silver-aluminium-frame-greenhouse-with-base-p-73384.html?cPath=696_3595_3746&src=list_name#style=&size_width=&size_length=&frame_material=&glazing_type=&brands=&min=0&max=250
Investing in a greenhouse means that you can have consistent gardening all year round as plants can evade and ignore the weather conditions outside in their purpose build environment. The warm and humid environment is perfect for vegetable and herb gardening, using this environment will enhance the growth of a variety different plants.
A final benefit of growing your own vegetables in a greenhouse is that you have control of what is actually put on the plants. Commercial farms often use pesticides or other chemicals to improve the growing conditions of their crops and increase production.
If you’ve seriously considered purchasing a greenhouse or already have one in your garden that you can put to use it might be a good time to put a bit of cash away to purchase all the necessary items and equipment to start growing your own food in the greenhouse.
Plant pots £30 – For £30 you can get a variety of different plant pots. Different foods require different space depending on whether they grow on the roots or on the branches.
Compost and hose pipe £40-£50 – Soil and compost can be purchased from most local garden centres as well as national outlets such as Homebase and B&Q. To start a garden you’ll probably need 3-4 bags which cost about £5 each so that’s a total of £20 for four bags, furthermore this should last a couple of years before new compost is needed to add nutrients to the plants. A hosepipe is a must if you’re an aspiring gardener, quality gets better as price increases but a mid-range hosepipe should last a good few years. Anywhere between £20 and £30 should be enough to get a pipe that you can reel up along with a changeable head, this will save plenty time in comparison to using a watering can.
Seeds and Tools £30 – Seeds normally aren’t too expensive but they will need to replenished every year before the summer, fortunately these seeds only cost about £1.00 a packet so you can try your hand at growing a variety of different fruit and vegetables or just a few. When sowing the seeds it’s likely you’ll need some equipment such as a trowel, fork and gloves to ensure you don’t get spiked or dirty hands. Again this isn’t a massive outlay and these tools can be used for an extended period of time.
There are alternatives to purchasing eggs in a supermarket too. With minimum fuss and with the right environment have you ever thought about keeping your own hens/chickens at home? Although the number of eggs a hen lays can typically vary you can expect anywhere between 200 and 300 eggs in the first year of the hens life. Hens become less productive in the second and third year of life but the eggs will be larger than in their first year of life.
Chickens of 17 weeks normally cost around £15 each so a few chickens will cost you £45 for around 600 to 900 eggs a year, feeding them is also fairly inexpensive with a 20kg bag of layer pellets costing £10 and this should feed a couple of hens for 3-4 months.
Representative example: £400 loan repayable over 6 months. 6 monthly payments of £126.40. Rate of interest 179% p.a. fixed. Representative 991% APR. Total amount payable is £758.40.