7 Reasons To Grow Produce At Home
Growing fruits and vegetables in your home is the safest, healthiest, cheapest way to offer fresh produce to your family. With a vertical, hydroponic garden, you can start cultivating a number of food-producing plants right in your kitchen, living room, or even your closet!
Why should you be growing produce at home? What does an indoor garden contribute to your wellbeing?
1. Less waste
Americans throw out nearly 35 million tons of food every year.
How many times have you bought fresh herbs in the grocery store, used it for two meals, and watched it quickly expire in your fridge?
A fruit starts to go bad the moment it’s picked from the plant. When you buy produce in store, it has already spent days—if not weeks—expiring in transit and in store. By the time you bring the goods home, you have a few days before you have to throw it out.
Potted herbs, fruits, veggies can last for weeks or months in your garden. Some herbs like rosemary and thyme can even last for years. With at-home growing, you pick your food the same day you want to use it, so you never have to waste food or money with that dreaded expiration date.
2. Save money
Moreover, America wastes $165 billion worth of food each year. That equates to nearly $2,200 per household annually. By reducing your produce waste, you’re instantly padding your wallet with thousands of dollars.
Growing produce at home helps reduce your weekly food expense. Organic foods are especially expensive in the grocery store, causing you to sacrifice health for price or vice versa.
For example, the average cost of a pack of fresh dill is $2. The average cost for a pack of dill seeds is $2. This means that you have an indefinite amount of fresh dill for the same exact price as a few uses of store-bought dill.
This is especially important to consider as we enter into a food crisis in America. An increase in population and decrease in access to food is quickly causing the price of fresh produce to skyrocket. Inexpensive, healthy food is quickly becoming a myth of the past.
3. Minimized chemicals
When you grow produce at home, you have direct control over the nutrients and solutions you use. You can have peace of mind knowing exactly where your family’s food is coming from—aka the same place where your family lives!
Reducing the number of pesticides and chemicals is critical to personal health. Pesticides are stored in your colon and are released into the bloodstream, slowly poisoning your body. Learn more about the dangers of pesticides here.
Hydroponic systems don’t require any pesticides, herbicides, or other unsafe chemicals all. Hydroponic systems are highly resistant to pests, which means you don’t need to use heavy chemicals to get rid of infestations. Hydroponic gardens also use eco-friendly nutrient solutions to feed plants, minimizing the need for aggressive, chemical mixtures.
But can’t you just buy organic food at the store to minimize chemicals? Along with the higher cost of organic food, a number of “organic” foods in store actually show traces of toxins!
Moreover, plants get “suffocated” by chemicals like pesticides and herbicides as well. This can slow plant growth and minimize nutrient capacity. This has a direct impact on the freshness and taste of your produce.
4. Enhanced freshness and taste
Fewer chemicals equate to greater freshness and health of plants.
At home, you have control over the time you pick your plants. You pick your food the same day you want to use it. You’re not buying food at the beginning of the week and watching it brown in the fridge for days until you have it for dinner on Friday.
Moreover, produce for the store is picked from the plant when half ripe. Growers have to pick the food when it hasn’t fully matured so that it will last longer in transit and continue to artificially “ripen” on the shelf.
However, when picked half ripe, the produce doesn’t have the chance to fully mature into its flavor. This means it’s both less fresh and less tasty. It also has reduced nutrient density because the nutrients haven’t had to time completely develop within the plant.
Plus, indoor gardens allow your produce to always be in-season. You don’t have to worry about weather or seasonal changes. With a well regulated grow tent, you can always grow fresh food in-season. No more flavorless tomatoes in the middle of winter.
5. Better for environment
Pesticides and fertilizers are not only toxic to your body and to your plants, they’re also bad for the environment. When these are used in agricultural farms, these chemicals seep into soil and run off into water sources. This directly introduces chemicals into the environment. These toxins are especially problematic in water, as they can damage aquatic ecosystems and contaminate drinking water.
Indoor hydroponic systems also save water and nutrient expenditure. Common agricultural practices use highly inefficient water processes, wasting gallons upon gallons of fresh water. Hydroponic systems actually recycle nutrient solutions and water for high optimization rate.
Plus, hydroponic systems don’t use soil, which reduces concerns of soil erosion and ground drainage.
Moreover, you’re getting produce right from your home. This cuts down on fuel used to transport from farms to warehouses to store. The average produce travels hundreds of miles to get to its final grocery store. That’s a lot of fuel and greenhouse gases being expended for an apple.
Along transit, your produce also has to be packaged in boxes, cardboard, and plastic. This is a significant waste of materials to ensure even partial freshness of your food. Even putting your produce in a plastic bag at the grocery store can be highly wasteful. Styrofoam is a common material used to transport food to avoid damage; however, Styrofoam is a suspected carcinogen and is manufactured through a process that releases high levels of greenhouse gasses.
Growing at home is the best way to do your part to reduce the food industry’s extensive carbon footprint.
6. Make money
A small indoor garden can be great to provide fresh food for your family, but you can also use it to create an additional income stream or side hustle. Some people have found so much success with indoor hydroponic gardens that they’ve turned growing into a full business, selling their produce to restaurants and at local farmers’ markets.
Even if you don’t want to start a business, you can still provide organic, healthy food to your community. This is especially important in urban areas where access to healthy, fresh food is limited.
7. Grow your skills
Gardening is good for you. Learning a new skill stimulates the release of dopamine, which increases motivation and develops the neurons in the brain. Gardening especially is a great way to relax and de-stress.
A hydroponic garden is also a great bonding experience for everyone in your home. You and your family can work together to cultivate your own food—and feel shared pride when you eat a stew filled with veggies you grew directly in your home garden!
Plus, it can help you connect with a community or social circle with other gardeners. You’ll find the gardening community is welcoming, inviting, and a lot of fun!
Growing produce in a hydroponic garden is a great way to have healthy, fresh, tasty, cost-effective food right in your own home. The environment, your wallet, your health, and your family will thank you!
Contact us now for a consult about growing produce right in the comfort of your own home!