Debt Articles

NESG Debt Garden 2010

Andy Faria from Northeast Settlement Group sent in pictures of his 2010 debt garden. He’s following up the trend I started with this post.

I have to confess, my garden this year is disappointing. The broccoli and yellow squash were killed by noseeum pests. The lettuce went absolutely crazy but the tomatoes have taken off and right now I’m inundated with little red orbs of all sizes.

So here is what Andy at Northeast Settlement Group sent in to share about his garden.


I stumbled across your post about the Debt Garden 2010 and realized that I needed to take a quick breather and write about something other than what I do for a living, settle debt. I would love to share my own Debt Garden 2010 story.

I also believe that growing our own vegetables is a great way to save money, and I’ve even figured out a way to slip in a small financial “life lesson” for my oldest daughter (three and a half). In August we’ll go to the farmers market in town and set up a small stand, she’ll love selling some of her extra veggies, and then she’ll learn how to take the little bit of money she earns to the bank and deposit it into her savings account. Kids are never too young to start learning the value of money and how to save it.

This garden started small with just a few tomato and pepper plants last year, this year I’ve expanded. Here’s my lineup:

1. Tomatoes – Granny Cantrell, Big Beef, Cherokee Purple, and a few others
2. Peppers – About a dozen varieties
3. Eggplant – a few varieties
4. Zucchini
5. Pole Beans
6. Sweet Corn
7. Blueberries (those damn chipmunks is all I can say)
8. Watermelon & Cantaloupe
9. Broccoli, Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage
10. Cucumbers
11. Carrots
12. Giant Pumpkin (supposed to be from a “champion” 1200lb pumpkin, it better be, it cost me $10 for 1 seed online)

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If you look at the pictures it’s not in a huge area, but I have planted a ton of veggies in there. I use all raised beds filled with compost, and I try to grow the plants “up” instead of “out”. Growing like this I’ve learned that the spacing requirements they post on seed packets doesn’t apply. You can feed a few families all summer on a 20’x40’ plot, you just need to squeeze it all in there.

My secret? Worm shit. Behind the bean poles I keep a 35 gallon Rubbermaid bin, all year I throw in all the kitchen scraps, garden scraps, newspapers, almost anything I can find, and the worms eat it so fast you wouldn’t believe it. They are supposed to be able to eat their own body weight every day, and I probably have about 3 lbs of worms in there, so it produces a HUGE amount of the best organic fertilizer you could possibly find. And best of all, it’s totally free, so I’m saving some money there.

Who knows how much I actually save with the garden but it makes a lot of people happy. My family, friends, co-workers, and clients will be getting fresh veggies forced on them, from about July 15 until Sept 15, and I never take no for an answer.




About the author

Steve Rhode

Steve Rhode is the Get Out of Debt Guy and has been helping good people with bad debt problems since 1994. You can learn more about Steve, here.

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