How A Summer Garden Can Reduce Your Grocery Bills And Improve Food Insecurity

The COVID-19 pandemic really demonstrated how much we rely on others to get our food. Grocery stores were declared an ‘essential service’ for a reason. Despite all efforts in coming together to support Canadians, there were still temporary shortages in several categories of products.

Though most households survived just fine, the 1 in 8 Canadian households who were already struggling with food insecurity faced the brunt of these shortages and the difficulties of the pandemic.

There’s no telling in the next couple of years what will happen around the current COVID-19 pandemic and how our food supply may be impacted. Food prices could rise significantly on several products, including fresh produce. This is an additional expense that many can’t afford. Cheaper, less healthy food alternatives but these will only lead to inadequate nutrition and potential health difficulties.

This has inspired a movement in many households to become increasingly self-sustainable. Gardening is a way to do just that, growing fresh produce, herbs, and edibles at far less cost compared to what one pays at a grocery store. Everything from tomatoes to potatoes, various types of lettuce, cucumbers, peppers, and more can easily be grown from seed in a home garden.

There’s nothing more nutritious than vegetables and fruits taken right from your own garden. Capturing them in all their tastiness, even a small back-porch garden can yield enough to temporarily relieve some cost on your grocery bill. There are also the added benefits of burning somewhere around 500 calories per hour when gardening and the mental health stress relief gardeners get from cultivating their own crops.

If you’re unsure about where to start with having a summer garden, consider what’s easiest to grow. Things like peas, beans, tomatoes, bell peppers, beets, and lettuce are all very easy. Cucumbers are also a great addition, however, they do require regular watering. Spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, carrots, and avocado can potentially be grown as well under the right conditions. Though they can require more care than veggies, you can also grow several fruits including strawberries, blueberries, and cherries.

With all these positives stated, know that unless you have significant space, you’re not going to be able to completely remove your expenses on groceries. That said, you can chop it down in a big way if you know what to plant. Living.ca is a great opportunity to start shopping for your garden essentials. See small mini-greenhouses, garden carts, terracotta pots, gloves, shovels, gardening tools, and more. This summer, create a garden and reduce your grocery bill. Self-sustainability is achievable!

Featured Photo by Jill Wellington from Pexels

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