When it comes to growing your own food, the most common question I receive is, “How much of each crop do I plant?” Every person or family eats differently and favors certain crops. And some folks (like myself) grow for fresh eating and preservation. So here’s my advice: make a grocery list. What do you buy? How much? How often? Grow that. For example:
My family eats garden fresh tomatoes raw a couple of times per week (excluding all the Sungolds that never leave the confines of the garden before I eat them). We eat tomato sauce twice per week in pastas and pizza so I need about 104 pints of canned sauce. Take a look at your favorite tomato variety... what is the yield like? Different plants produce different amounts. In short, I personally grow 30-35 tomato plants. This provides us with enough fresh and canned tomatoes for a year. Plus I have some left to donate to the food pantry.
Calculating how much food to grow takes time. But if you’re serious about self-sufficiency and security when it comes to produce, it’s well worth it. Take some time to analyze your consumption and cross reference that with what plant varieties you like to grow. Therein lies your answer.
Angela is the farmer and content creator behind Axe & Root Homestead LLC. This historic six-acre farm is home to two Clydesdale horses, ten honeybee hives, three Hampshire sheep, a guardian dog, barn cats and a flock of 40 geese and ducks. The farm produces maple syrup, fruit from a small orchard and loads of garden produce for consumption, preservation and donation to the local food pantry.