How to Grow Your Own Food – Weigh In Wednesday

This year my goal is to grow 2,000 pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables. I think I can do it. With 16 raised garden beds, a greenhouse, a raspberry patch and a few more planting beds sprinkled throughout our property, I believe growing 2,000 pounds of food is an attainable goal. Even if I do live right in the middle of high maintenance suburbia, and my neighbors think I’m nuts. ~Mavis


It’s too cold to garden!

Pretty soon I’ll have to pull out my winter boots and down jacket… Man oh man has the weather started to change.  We woke up to a chilly house this morning and I thought for sure the Handsome Husband was going to go out back and grab some wood to start a fire.

I can only imagine what it must be like to garden in Alaska or something. I bet they must grow everything inside.

Well, as far as my backyard garden goes, things are moving {or growing} right along.  I was out of town for most of last week so I didn’t get around to picking much, but The Girl and I did pick a few pumpkins last night, along with some tomatoes, and greens on Monday.  So I think today is going to be a serious work day for me out in the garden.  Which is a good thing, as I know there is a ton of little projects that need my attention.



Here is what I have harvested so far this year:

Basil 1 lb 9 oz {how to make pesto}

Beans 21 lbs 3 {green bean salad, how to can green beans, dilly beans}

Beets 58 lb 20z {how to can beets}

Blueberries 4 lb 9 oz {mixed berry pie recipe}

Bok Choy 1 lb 13 oz

Broccoli 4lb 14 oz {pasta salad with broccoli, carrots, and sun dried tomatoes}

Broccoli Rabb 1lb 6 oz {chickpeas with broccoli raab and bacon}

Cabbage 57 lb 0 oz {how to make sauerkraut}

Carrots 117 lbs 6 oz {carrot cake recipe}

Cauliflower 4 lbs 11 oz {cauliflower hummus rocks!}

Chives 1lb 3 oz {chalkboard painted herb pots}

Cucumbers 54 lbs 12 oz {cucumber salad}

Anna Swartz Hubbard Squash 184 lbs 1 ounces {Hubbard Squash Pie}

Golden Hubbard Squash 22 lbs 5 oz

Sweet Meat Squash 9 lbs 13 oz

Kale 3 lb 13 oz {how to make kale chips}

Lettuce 14 lb 6 oz {bbq chicken salad}

Mint 4 lbs 12 oz {Fresh Pea Salad with Spinach, Feta and Mint}

Onions 34 lbs 9 oz {Kentucky Fried Chicken Cole Slaw}

Oregano 4 lbs 15 oz

Mushrooms 9.25 oz {read more about how I grew mushrooms}

Peas 38 lb 13 oz {fresh peas and bacon recipe}

Pears 8 lbs 15 oz {how to make pear jam}

Peppers 5 lb 8 oz {Homemade Salsa}

Potatoes 70 lb 10 oz {potato soup recipe}

Howden Pumpkins 59 lbs 11 oz

Cinderella Pumpkins 45 lbs 4 oz {roasted pumpkin seeds}

French Pumpkin 13 lbs 4 oz

Jarrahdale Pumpkin 39 pounds 7 oz

Sugar Pie Pumpkins 3 lb 10 oz {how to make pumpkin puree}

Misc. Pumpkins 120 lbs 9 oz.

Acorn Squash 1 lb 8 oz

Radish 16 lb 6 oz {how I bartered radishes for avocados}

Raspberries 2 lb 9 oz {how to make a raspberry buckle}

Spinach 2lb 5 oz {garlic spinach dip recipe}

Sprouts 10 oz {how to grow sprouts}

Strawberries 17 lbs 4 oz {strawberry basil jam}

Swiss Chard 27 lb 3 oz {rainbow Swiss chard recipe}

Tomatoes 128 lb 11 oz{roasted corn salad with tomatoes and feta}

Zucchini 257 lb 11 oz {how to make zucchini relish, zucchini salad, zucchini brownies}

Miscellaneous 8lbs 2 oz {This means we let someone come and pick vegetables, or did not get a chance to weigh them individually, and this was the total weight of all the vegetables combined}


So that’s what I’ve grown so far this year… How about YOU?

How is YOUR garden doing?

Total Food Harvested in 2012:  1472 pounds  10.25 ounces

I have spent a total of $516.21 on seeds, soil, plants and supplies for this year.

The Self Sufficient Life and How to Live It is the only book that teaches all the skills needed to live independently in harmony with the land harnessing natural forms of energy, raising crops and keeping livestock, preserving foodstuffs, making beer and wine, basketry, carpentry, weaving baskets. ~ Amazon

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  1. Danielle says

    Oh Mavis, I’m so jealous of your pumpkins! I bought 6 different varieties of pumpkin seeds to plant this year and never got around to it! I live in Florida so my fall garden went in the ground throughout the month of september. During the summer it gets so hot that planting is limited. I did grow black-eyed peas, lots of peppers and eggplant, and for the first time I tried sweet potatoes. I needed more space in the garden for more greens(two types of kale, chard, collards,) so I pulled up the sweet potatoes today…what a dissapointment, they were in the ground for 110 days, and I only got 3 decent sized ones. The rest were tiny! I think I’ll stick to buying them in the grociery store from now on!

  2. Karina says

    I was thinking the other day… Why don’t you count the weight of all the eggs you bring in? I feel like you would be way past 2000 lbs by now! I mean, you don’t buy them at a store, so why not count them as homegrown?!

  3. Sue says

    I’m extremely jealous of your tomato haul so far. Do you know roughly how many plants were sown (I couldn’t find that reference). I’m currently storing over 55 lbs. of Sweet Potato squash in my basement and this is after consuming and giving away at least another 50.

    • Mavis says

      I started with 120 plants. But then my husband killed some when I went away on vacation, so in the end I had about 80 heirloom plants. :)

  4. Adrienne says

    Have you considered sprouting seeds indoors to be used as food and increase your numbers? They sell fancy sprouting containers out there, but for me I simply cut a large hole from the lid of a peanut butter jar and put a straining cloth over it. Broccoli and radish sprouts are small and would be good in salads or mixed in rice (yum) but I’ve also made Lentil-sprout tacos for meatless Mondays (surprisingly good! the crunch from the lentils makes you feel less deprived from the lack of meat). Currently I’m also growing pea shoots to snip and saute with garlic (SUPER fast to grow, and it’s indoors) Hope these ideas are helpful!

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