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How To Start A Garden When On A Tight Budget in 12 Free Ways?

Feeling upset because starting a garden seems too costly? Wishing you could have a beautiful garden without spending too much? Great news – gardening doesn’t have to be expensive!

In this article, I show you that you don’t need lots of money to start a garden. I have shared 12 easy and cheap ways to get your garden going. You’ll learn how to save money on seeds, use leftovers to help your garden grow, make your own water system, and even use fast food boxes as small greenhouses. The focus here is on using what you have in clever ways, not on spending a lot of money.

12 Free Ways To Start A Garden This Year

Numerous tools and gadgets people buy for their gardens are often unnecessary to grow flowers, vegetables or crops. Before you begin to spend your hard-earned money on gardening equipment, think about whether it is necessary. Keep on reading to learn the cheapest ways to start a garden.

1. Save Money On Seeds

It is only possible to grow a garden with access to seeds. While seeds can be a major expense if you plan on growing a variety of crops and plants, thorough planning can help you avoid unnecessary costs. Instead of spending a lot of money purchasing designer seed packets, you can save seeds from the organic produce you buy. However, make sure that the produce you use is organic! 

2. Join Seed/Plant Exchanges

If you are looking for free ways to start a garden without money, you must look out for seed/plant exchanges. Many local communities hold plant swaps or seed exchanges frequently. Such events are great opportunities to meet like-minded gardening enthusiasts and get access to high-quality seeds. Many experienced gardeners would be thrilled at the opportunity to share their expertise with newbies and even share seeds and plants. 

3. Save Money On Compost

Start a garden with compost

Many garden soils lack the nutrients needed for plants to thrive. Spending a hefty amount on purchasing compost and soil additives is never wise. Another way to cut down on costs and begin gardening with no money is to get compost for free.

The best way to achieve this is by using a city compost or composting it yourself. Thankfully, making your compost is a straightforward task requiring little to no effort. Simply pick a corner in your garden and start a compost pile with dried grass. You can then deposit any kitchen or garden waste into the hole and water it frequently. 

4. Use Kitchen Scraps

Leftover bits and kitchen scraps can be valuable for gardeners. Numerous supermarket vegetables can be grown at home without the need to purchase seeds. A few of these vegetables include celery, lettuce and onions. 

Fortunately, growing these vegetables is not tough, even if you are just starting! I recommend placing the root end of the vegetable in a jar and filling it with water without covering the entire plant. Place the jar in a spot where it will receive sufficient sunlight. With time, you will begin to notice some growth. Transfer it to a pot and keep watering it! 

Use kitchen scrapes to start a garden

5. Use Organic Materials For Mulching

Mulch works wonders in elevating the appeal of your garden. It helps conserve water and protects the soil from eroding. Fortunately, a wide range of items can be used as mulch. Many of these can be sourced for free. Many communities offer wood chips, compost and soil free of cost. 

It is always a good idea to save your grass clippings from your mower during the sunny season. The grass clippings you save can be used as mulch for your garden. Fall leaves and newspapers make great mulch as well. While this step does require research from your side, it will help you reap a wide range of benefits and help save a significant amount.

Also Read: 4 Step EASY Guide to Mulch Leaves With a Lawn Mower

6. Use Cooking Water 

How to start a garden when on a tight budget in 12 free ways?

When gardening on a tight budget, finding innovative ways to save money is essential. Think about the times you have discarded cooking water. When you boil pasta or vegetables, the water absorbs minerals and vitamins. Repurposing cooking water can help plants benefit from the minerals and benefits it contains. This eco-friendly tip will help fortify your garden, boost the growth of your plants and conserve water resources.

7. Use Cuttings To Grow New Plants 

Growing from seeds is a great idea for most plants. However, many flowering plants like roses and gardenias grow best from cuttings. This is a cost-effective method to expand your garden without having to spend money on purchasing seedlings. 

Using cuttings to grow new plants is simple. Select healthy stems from the plants you wish to grow, remove the leaves and place the cuttings in a container filled with water. When new leaf buds begin to appear, you may transplant them from the container to your garden.

8. Create A DIY Irrigation System

Start a garden with diy irrigation system

Setting up an irrigation system can be expensive. If you are starting your garden on a tight budget, recycling plastic water bottles to create an irrigation system is an incredible and eco-friendly option. Begin by collecting plastic bottles and poking small holes in the bottle caps. Fill the bottles with water and bury them upside down near the base of your plants. The water will trickle out at a steady speed as needed. 

9. Design Your Garden Yourself 

Hiring a professional landscape designer is expensive. However, the cheapest way to start a garden is to design your garden yourself if you believe you have enough plant knowledge and experience. If you don’t, you can always consult the internet and access numerous free resources! Before you begin designing the layout, assess the space you have. Make sure you weigh factors such as sunlight and drainage and do ample research before finalising anything. 

Also Read: Do It Yourself Lawn Grading: How to Level a Yard By Hand

10. Use Materials Around The House

Looking for starter pots yet don’t wanna purchase them? Make them at home! Most free ways to start a garden without money require the use of your art-and-craft skills. If paper towels or toilet paper rolls are lying around, don’t just throw them into the bin. These paper rolls can be converted into starter pots for your plants! Cut them into your desired size and fill them with soil and seeds – it’s that simple! 

11. Use Coffee Grounds or Tea Leaves as Fertilizer

Start a garden with coffee and tea

If you drink coffee and tea regularly, let us give you a tip. Caffeine can be an excellent fertilizer for your plants and contains various essential nutrients that plants need. These nutrients include magnesium, potassium, calcium and nitrogen. Putting coffee grounds or tea leaves into your fertilizer is an organic way to boost your plant’s growth. Tea leaves from green and black tea also serve as natural pest repellants

Read More: The Fertilizer Formula: How Much is Just Right for Your Lawn?

12. Recycle Fast Food Containers – Use Them As Mini Greenhouses 

If you toss fast food containers into a bin once you eat, you might want to stop doing that. You can use these containers to grow seedlings indoors. Wash the containers and feed them with soil. Make a few holes in the lid and plant your seeds. Ensure you mist it regularly and place the container in a place that receives sufficient sunlight.

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Starting a garden can elevate the appeal of your property and provide you with fresh vegetables to eat. While creating your garden from scratch requires much time and patience, the outcome is worth all your efforts. When you start a garden on a budget, save on items such as seeds, compost, soil and fertilizer. Instead of spending a lot, opting for eco-friendly and sustainable methods is best.

Ian richardson

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