Save Money on Fresh Vegetables
This is not a typical store deal but keep your eyes and ears open for free produce from over-flowing gardens right now. Especially cucumbers and zucchini. I got my garden out late because of wet weather and don’t have anything but Summer Squash yet.
However, an older lady who lives about a mile away from me has a huge garden already producing. I baked some banana bread for her yesterday and she invited me in for a chat. Her counters were piled with zucchini and cucumbers. She’d been freezing zucchini and was preparing to start on pickles.
She said a lot would go to waste and gave me several plastic bags full of zucchini and cucumbers for free. I worked yesterday afternoon and evening grating the zucchini and I froze it in Ziploc bags in 2 cup portions…the right amount for two loaves of zucchini bread. Then I cut some up and froze in portions for home made spaghetti sauce. We will be eating some of the cucumbers fresh/in salads and I will be canning some pickles.
Amish Stands/Farmer’s Markets
Also, when you can’t get it free from a garden try a stand for fresh, reasonable produce. Before I landed the free produce, I was buying from a local Amish stand. They have beautiful produce and they don’t use pesticides.
I was getting two large cucumbers for $1.00 or three smaller ones for $1.00. Same for zucchini. They also have green peppers, two large green peppers for $1.00 or three medium ones for $1.50. The price at my local Kroger is anywhere from $1.67 to $2.83 each and these taste much better. They also have watermelon, cantaloupe,corn on the cob, green beans and new potatoes.
If you can find an Amish stand or Farmer’s Market in your area, give it a try. I think you will like the quality of the produce and the price!
My favorite produce is free or almost free. We are friends with our neighbor down the street and he just gave me a huge bag of hot peppers which we are going to dehydrate to use in salsa and Mexican food. Make friends with your neighbors!!! I can’t tell you how much money we have saved over the years just by being friends with our neighbors!! From not having to buy a needed tool, fixing our lawnmower or free produce we’ve saved hundreds if not thousands!
As for farmers markets. These aren’t always the greatest place to find cheap produce. You have to make sure that you are getting a good deal. One time I got a box of over 100 green peppers for $1. Now that was a great deal and you can find these deals but they aren’t common. The best time to go is at the end of day when they don’t want to drag it all home. Ask “what’s the best deal I can get for these.” That’s all you have to say and sometimes you will be very surprised!
Getting to know your neighbors is great. When I first moved into my house I started taking small plates of baked goods over to my neighbor because I knew she didn’t like to bake. I now get all kinds of really nice fresh fruits and veggies from her when she receives extras. I watch her dog for her and she lends me her big ladder. It is a wonderful two way street.
photo by: scubadive67