Harvest Monday is going to be a bit different for me today. Though technically it isn't about tallying up how much you spend and how much you get, I do that every year. I put the results in my sidebar. Last Harvest Monday I had the last squash tallied in for last year. So last week I got my new 2015 side bar tally sheet up. Last year's results get put on the bottom and this years gets started. There are no harvest yet as everything is frozen solid for quite some time, but I do have expenses.
The first expenses that go in are my amortized costs for the garden. I just make a guess at how long a large purchase will last and use that has how long to amortize over. A lot of the short term ones have expired, but I still have things like the soil that made up the garden (7.44/year), my plastic composter (5/year), tomato cages (if only I had known that I couldn't eat tomatoes a couple years earlier they wouldn't have gotten bought 18.01/year), some bricks(0.81/year), and the materials like wood and corner braces that make up the raised beds (106.22/year).
The amortized bill is remarkably low this year at $137.49. Last year it was $321. The difference is in two things. One is my fertilizers. I typically amortize a bulk buy of fertilizers over two years. However I still have tons of fertlizer and that time has expired. The second is that the large bamboo purchase I made at the beginning of the garden has expired. The bamboo is still going strong. The short 4' ones are starting to get brittle and might need replacing soon, but the big ones show no signs of rotting out yet. They are much sturdier. I might even cut some in half and use them for the four foot ones.
Other things will get added to the spent tally over the year, but the major thing that gets added in January is the seed bill.
I always buy new seed of carrots, onions (not this year though except for bunching onions), spinach, celery, and corn every year. I can't count on the seed surviving to the next year. The other exception this year is corn. Fedco has packet sizes. The A size is the typical. B size is usually twice as much. Last year I knew I needed two packets of corn as one wasn't enough. So I ordered the B packet without really looking. Well it turns out the corn B packet is four times the size. When it came it was obvious. I should look closer. So I immediately put half of the corn into the freezer in a sealed container. Last week I did a germination test. I put 15 seeds into a ziplock with a wet paper towel. I put it near my heat and waited two days. 15 out of 15 of those seeds germinated. This year I won't need to buy corn.
I always order from Fedco which is a cooperative of growers and buyers of seed. I like their philosophy. And they tell you the generalities about where the seed come from, be it a multinational corporation or a small farmer. They are located and specialize in seed for the Northeast where I live. And they are pretty inexpensive and have no shipping costs if you order enough. Which I do. This year I spent $58.50 for an equivalent of 36 packets of seed (the C packet is 8 times the amount of seed of an A packet - I use a lot of bok choy seed as I often direct seed it and the seed last for years).
|Golden Gate Pole Bean|
|Scarlet Keeper Carrot|
|Mokum Carrot (B)|
|Gold Ball Turnip|
|Evergreen Hardy White Onion|
|Space Spinach (B)|
|Summer Lettuce Mix|
|Hon Tsai Tai Purple Choy Sum|
|Shuko Bok Choy (C)|
|Arcadia Broccoli (B)|
|Diablo Brussels Sprouts|
|Winterbor Kale (B)|
|Winner Kohlrabi (B)|
Fedco doesn't sell everything I want. My next stop is Pinetree which is also a New England company. I like them because I can get small amounts and their shipping is cheap. So I can fill in my needs usually.
|Earliglow Strawberries (10 plants)|
|Golden Acre Cabbage|
|Point One Cabbage|
|Green Rocket Michihili Cabbage|
|Dwarf Blue Curled Kale|
|German Giant Radish|
Sadly I wish those two companies had everything I needed. But they don't. Sigh. I really liked Bolero Carrots. Though I am hoping that the Scarlet Keepers I'm trying this year from Fedco taste as good from storage. I order these from Renee's since they have the cheapest shipping and I'm only ordering one thing. $6.04 for just one packet of seed. Ouch!
I would probably buy more things if shipping weren't so huge for one item. For instance I'd buy some Monument Michihili from Kitazawa seeds or some choy sum (Fedco only had purple, which I got to try, but I know I like the regular kind). I messed up when I ordered from Renee's too. I wanted to try the Romanesco zucchini that Michelle grew last year. They sell the seeds. I was ordering from them. I should have ordered that one too. Maybe next year.
Harvest Monday is a day to show off your harvests, how you are saving your harvest, or how you are using your harvest. If you have a harvest you want to show off, add your name and link to Mr Linky below.