“Is it worth devoting three months of your life to save $2.19 on tomatoes?” The question was asked in fun, and I had heard variations of it before, but it is a great question! Organically growing your own food does require work, and you invest some money into gardening supplies, seeds, plants, etc. Is it worth it? I’ll answer with a comparison.
A bag of tomatoes from the store = $3
TASTE of a sun-ripened, organically grown, freshly picked tomato from my garden = Priceless. Honestly, if this is something you haven’t experienced, make friends with a gardener and hope they give you tomatoes! Better yet, even if it is just in a pot, grow some yourself! There is nothing like the flavor and scent of a freshly picked, homegrown tomato. My friend, Jamie, grew her first tomatoes this year. For Jamie, growing a Salsa Garden was less about saving money and more about using a planter lovingly made by her dad. It was also a special way to remember her mother, who loved to garden and loved fresh tomato sandwiches.
In addition to the unbeatable flavors, there are incredible health benefits of having an abundance of organic produce right in your backyard. Over the last 25 years of raising children and gardens, we have learned that when kids plant and water and grow vegetables, they learn to love vegetables. Whenever they want, they can go out to the garden and forage for cherry tomatoes or raspberries or bell peppers, etc. all grown free of harmful chemicals. So yes, it is worth it! It’s not only worth it, it’s fun!
But Doesn’t that Farm Tie You Down?
I saw the following quote yesterday and couldn’t get it out of my mind. It is so beautifully written and really captures why living on a small farm (or even growing a garden in the city) is not only worth the trouble, but also fills your heart. It was written by Heather Benson of dalarnafarm.com and is posted here with permission.
“Quite regularly, someone seems to say to me ‘Oh but doesn’t that farm and all those animals really tie you down?’ Why yes, yes they do.”
“They tie me to starting my day when the sun rises and ending it well after the sun sets…but it means I always get to see them both.”
“They tie me to the rhythm of the seasons…the might of the winter blizzard, the first spring breeze carrying the scent of rain, the towering glory of a summer thunderhead and the fall of leaves from the poplar trees.”
“They tie me to concentrating on the chores that need to be done right now…not the regrets of yesterday nor the worries for tomorrow.”
“This farm and all these animals keep me tied down to earth when the rest of of the universe tries to flip me upside down. And so I would much rather be tied down here than set adrift in the tumultuous sea I see so many others in. I find this mooring rather to my liking.”
In conclusion, is it worth three months of your life to save $2.19 on tomatoes? YES!
You make me want to be a farmer
Margaret Williams says
Oh, you make me so proud! Could all of that come from when we raised a big garden and you helped and then helped with the harvesting and canning. We had some wonderful together time!
Absolutely! It’s hard to put into words the security I felt as a child, sitting around a bountiful, colorful dinner table on a summer night and realizing that all of it, even the butter, was from our land. And the canning! We sure made a sticky mess but I still remember all the Sunday evenings with a nice piece of toast and peanut butter and a big bowl of beautiful canned peaches and the Wonderful World of Disney on TV. 🙂
Oh that makes me so happy! One of the things I hoped to convey through this blog site is the joy of growing things. 🙂
I loved this!
Thanks Sheila! I’m so glad you did!
Jane Miller says
I love reading your site Rebecca! I remember eating fresh tomatoes with a little salt when I was a kid. Eating something from your garden is more then just the flavor. It invokes memories, conversations with loved ones and the sites/smells of the season. I don’t have a large garden now, but the bunches of basil that I grow remind me of the freshness of tomatoes.
I’m so glad you enjoy the site Jane! I agree about the memories and thinking of loved ones and connecting with the seasons! And I can just smell that basil!! That is so cool that you are growing that, even though you don’t have a big garden this year. Do you try to snip off the flower heads on the basil? I got a little neglectful on that and now my basil is mostly flower heads and not as many leaves.