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For those of you that don't have the time, space, or energy to plant a garden, share tips on ways you have found to save money on fresh produce.

Many of the farmers markets around here are really quite expensive even though the quality is fabulous.

I was really lucky to find a shop that opened right down the street a few years back. It is similar to a farmers market but it's open 6 days a week and the prices are wonderful.
 

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if you really can't/won't plant even a few items for yourself

~ barter with friends/neighbors who grow gardens
~ shop seasonally, and freeze , can or dehydrate items for use in off season
~ don't waste it. . . the most expensive food is the food you tossed out due to not using it. I dehydrate celery leaves, turnip greens, etc. and powder them for use in soups, breads, etc. I use odds and ends of veggies in soups, casseroles, pizza, quesadillas, etc.
 

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no one here gardens in this neighborhood and its frowned upon.
We have a farm market that meet in town but is expensive
So we go to another farther away but lately people were given vouchers to shop there as a state program so the environment is stressful due to demand.

I have resorted to shopping at roadside stands sporadically. A lot of stuff is just from Aldis.
 

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put in garden, buy it from reduced rack when possible, buy in season, and aldis. I wish we had fresh farmers markets around my area.
 

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no one here gardens in this neighborhood and its frowned upon.
We have a farm market that meet in town but is expensive
So we go to another farther away but lately people were given vouchers to shop there as a state program so the environment is stressful due to demand.

I have resorted to shopping at roadside stands sporadically. A lot of stuff is just from Aldis.
We moved here 1-1/2 years ago. There wasn't a veggie garden in the whole of this neighbourhood. We planted a raised garden and have started a trend. Our neighbour beside us planted a few veggies this year - they keep coming for advice :) Our neighbour behind is now thinking of a raised garden bed. It just takes a small step to get others noticing. Suddenly, instead of frowning, they are excited about growing their own veggies. Even growing some veggies in pots on the deck works well.
 

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momoffive-Nooooo. I had a garden 4 yrs ago and it attracted a deer according to our neighbors. First he accused my Ds and his friend. We he found out a deer had broken his fence, it was my fault. The people behind are the same way. They are very entitled and feel they can do anything but.. not the opposite way. Mind you were are talking a 12 x 12 fenced garden w/ composted manure,so no odor.
 

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I gardened and bought fresh fruits/veggies from Bountiful Baskets.....I sure miss Bountiful Baskets. :frown:
 
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I too garden.. I do buy things at the store where I work that is on sale each week is different things.. I plan my meals around what is on sale..
 

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Here there are a LOT of roadside set ups. What they have depends on the season of course. They pull off the road and park and either set up a stand or back of the truck.
Oranges, tomatoes, watermelons, melons, strawberries, onions, zucchini, squash, corn, cucumbers, peppers etc.

Right now one place is selling watermelons 4 for $5. Unfortunately I have no place to PUT 4 watermelons. Tomatoes are normally $3 a basket. Strawberries vary. Half a flat runs about $7 and a whole flat... FULL... about $14 to $17.

Hardly ever see grapefruit, lemons or limes though. I think that's strange.
 
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Hey,
This year I added 3 raised beds to my square foot gardens along with more containers. So, I am hoping a lot of ours comes from the garden. We have a farm stand up the road but since it is about 20 minutes up the road, I usually go there minimally. I hate to say it but up until now, the grocery store was my place. I cant believe how gardening makes me feel, I cant contain myself woot woot
have a great day
 

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Hey,
This year I added 3 raised beds to my square foot gardens along with more containers. So, I am hoping a lot of ours comes from the garden. We have a farm stand up the road but since it is about 20 minutes up the road, I usually go there minimally. I hate to say it but up until now, the grocery store was my place. I cant believe how gardening makes me feel, I cant contain myself woot woot
have a great day
I feel the same way...I have over a dozen four foot by four foot raised beds...I also buy from our local co-op.
 
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For those of you that don't have the time, space, or energy to plant a garden, share tips on ways you have found to save money on fresh produce.

Many of the farmers markets around here are really quite expensive even though the quality is fabulous.

I was really lucky to find a shop that opened right down the street a few years back. It is similar to a farmers market but it's open 6 days a week and the prices are wonderful.
One way I save on fresh produce is by scouring the ads that come in the mailbox each Tuesday. For example, this week I bought 4 small avocados for a dollar at Vallarta, 4 lbs. of watermelon for a dollar, and 2 lbs. of limes for a dollar. Last week they had 10 lbs. of onions for a dollar, and 3 lbs. of cantaloupe for a dollar. Sometimes these are just one day sales, so I plan my shopping for that day. I try to just buy produce that is on sale. I bring my shopping cart with me to my knitting group. There is a produce market on that side of town that has great specials, too. For example, next week I'll pick up 2 heads if romaine lettuce for a dollar there. I also buy certain things at Costco. Last week I got a huge container of blueberries for $6.00. I also by bananas there for .69 a lb. It makes such a difference, because I eat a lot of produce. I also have a backyard orchard and a small vegetable and herb garden. My neighbor and I trade. I give her lemons and persimmons. She gives me peaches and figs.
 

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I've been wanting to have a lettuce patch & herb garden in the yard. Have not had opportunity yet.
Last year I grew arugula and lettuce in my driveway. I didn't have to buy any salad greens for five months! It was great! Lettuce is super easy to grow! I saved the seeds for next year.
 

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I grow a lot of produce in my backyard and I also work in an organic vegetable garden in a Horticulture center, so between the two I don't need to buy much. I have blueberries, raspberries and strawberries growing at home and lemons and mandarins too.

I get some fruit and berries from the Horticulture center orchard in the summer and buy the rest from Costco mostly. I eat as much organic as possible, so am always looking for the best prices. In the winter I grow a variety of greens, carrots and beets. Early spring I grow garlic and potatoes. I've been working on my rotation for years and finally have it where I can grow most of my vegetables. I do buy onions, some potatoes and lettuce, and tomatoes in the winter. I eat a lot of salads and prefer to buy lettuce. I will grow chard, kale and bok choi though.

If I wanted to tear out some of my landscape, I could add fruit trees....but I have enough work to do with my vegetable beds so will leave that alone for now.
 

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I just go to Sprouts. Produce is rarely above .45/lb, and high quality. Late summer I'll go to a large farmer's market to get produce for canning at reasonable prices.
 

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I just go to Sprouts. Produce is rarely above .45/lb, and high quality. Late summer I'll go to a large farmer's market to get produce for canning at reasonable prices.
I keep hearing about that place. I guess I need to check it out.
 

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I keep hearing about that place. I guess I need to check it out.
Get in there. I'm a little upset with myself that it took me over two years to go to the one near me. I thought it was a Whole Foods clone, complete with the high prices. Nothing of the sort. There's still organic food, vitamins and whatnot, but you don't have to pay whatever it is Whole Foods tries to charge for their items.
 

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I joined a community garden a few years back. It's right down the road from where I live so I can get to it easily. It's on my way to/from work so it's easy to stop for fresh veggies on my way home.

I also know where a couple of local farms are so I can stop by for what I don't grow in my own garden when the farmer's market is closed.

Another suggestion for people who can't garden - check to see if there's a CSA in your area. They may be a bit expensive up front but it probably works out over the course of the growing season. I've heard from a couple people that they get a ~lot~ of produce. Not sure if it was from a full share or a half share. I think most CSA's allow for a half share. The downside of joining a CSA is you get what the farm grows, rather than being able to pick and choose like from the grocery store. Although if the CSA allows for a pick-your-own day each week, that might offset this downside.
 
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