Stock market downturn got you down? Wall Street bail out got you scratching your head about where to invest? Well I have a suggestion for you… Invest in a garden! Once established a garden can produce thousands of dollars worth of fresh vegetables, fruits and nuts, for less than $100 dollars of investment each year. Now if you ask me, that’s what a return on your investment should look like. Even google stocks can’t provide 1000% return… (can they?). What about the security of your investment, you ask? Well there are risks associated with all investments. Deer could come looking for a snack, aphids might too (we’ve got solutions for that)... you might have an unexpected freeze or you might forget to water it (we have solutions for that too). But for the most part home gardens rarely fail to produce some produce.
Just in case my math is not getting through to you, let’s talk taste;
Money (while some enjoy the smell), tastes awful! The texture is no good, the flavor is like a combination of greed and the inside of other peoples pockets. Aside from the obvious fiber benefit the nutritional value is nil.
Fruits and vegetables on the other hand are delicious! You can grow better, more tasty varieties of all types of fruit and vegetables in your garden than super market suppliers do (since you don’t have to ship them across the continent). Your garden investment returns will have a fiber content rivaling any denomination of money. They will also have all the other vitamins and minerals you need, this will give you the energy you need to do things like… umm, live. As long as we are on the subject of living, the idea that gardening is something that takes a lot of time… it’s not true. A modern home garden, with a timed drip irrigation system, healthy soil, using some kind of organic or sustainable principles needs little to no daily maintenance. This year I have been slacking off in my garden. I planted my seedlings and transplants in spring over a weekend. Adjusted and fixed my irrigation system a few weekends later.
A recent New York Times article reported that Americans spend 15% of their money on Food & Beverages… however only 1% on fresh fruits and vegetables. That means only one fifteenth of our average food budget is spent on fresh food. Now if you say the medium income in the U.S. is around $40,000 a year… say 1% of that is spent on fresh fruit and veggies now, that’s $400 a year you can save right off the top. But if you get half of what you would spend on food out of your garden (this is what most avid vegetable gardeners could do) you’d save yourself $3,000 a year.
Now this ideas is not mine alone, apparently lots of Americans are digging into gardening to fight the fiscal crisis. We’ve seen a rise in new customers in the last year or so. So next time you read or hear a report about our failing financial system, or how the stock market is going to crash… remember that’s the stock market, not the farmers’ market. Money is not on the list of “Things Needed To Live” (it feels like it sometimes, I know)... nobody ever fills their back yard bunker with money… they fill it with canned fruits and vegetables. I am positive that economists and wall street strategists across the nation will admittedly disagree with me when I tell you to take your money (at least $100 of it) out of stocks and invest it in a garden. But I’m okay with that, economists and those on wall street are the ones who got us here in the first place.
I’d rather take the advice of a local farmer, you’ll notice no one ever blames them for financial crisis, or wars, or irresponsible lending… there are a few out there that use too many pesticides… but we’re working on that too. So take some of your green backs and put them in produce backed stalks, you’re sure to see a greener yard, a greener planet and a little more green backs in you wallet. Here at Peaceful Valley we believe you can have your planet and eat it too .