Fresh, home grown vegetables is a constant in-demand product. You can often beat the large supermarket chain on prices, and always on product quality. You can even become a supplier to small grocery stores. But most of your profits will come from direct retail sales to consumers who are looking for ‘farm fresh, chemical free’ produce.

There are literally dozens of different vegetable crops you can grow. I recommend that you pick 8 or 10 of the most popular vegetables. Using intensive gardening techniques can greatly increase the amount produced per acre. Some growers have reported incomes of up to $20,000 per acre!

These are a few of the most popular vegetables:

Asparagus — yields up to 2,000 pounds per acre at $2 per pound. Plants are started as roots and are ready to use in about 3 years. And will continue producing for up to 20 years.

Beans — always one of the most popular crops, and come in many easy-to-grow varieties. Beans will produce several crops each growing season.

Brussels Sprouts — relatively easy to grow and can produce late into the year, even after a frost.

Carrots — requires lots of loose fertile soil. There is a strong demand for ‘baby carrots.’

Corn — one of the most popular fresh picked vegetables, although it does have a slightly lower profitability per acre.

Lettuce — a quick and easy-to-grow vegetable. You should grow several different varieties, and it can be planted very early.

Peppers — both the mild and hot varieties. Peppers need a long warm growing season and well drained soil.

Other popular items include okra, onions, peas, radishes, spinach, squash, tomatoes, watermelon, and egg plant.

Vegetables can be marketed in a variety of ways. There are even many ‘U-Pick’ vegetable operations. However, by far the best way to sell vegetables is by operating a small roadside stand, or at an established farmer’s market. Most communities have a farmer’s market operating on weekends.

There’s a booming market for organically grown vegetables. And that market will continue. Chemical free produce will always bring you premium prices. Organically grown vegetables take a little more soil preparation and effort, but they can be well worth the extra effort.

Other ways to market vegetables are: directly to restaurants, local stores, and to food co-ops. The key to all of these marketing efforts is to have a high quality, chemical free products.

Choose a Grass Type that Thrives in your Climate

The right type of grass–one that suits your needs and likes the local weather–will always give better results. Grasses vary in the type of climate they prefer, the amount of water and nutrients they need, their resistance to pests, their tolerance for shade, and the degree of wear they can withstand. (more…)

Shrubs for Fall Foliage

Arrowwood Viburnum (Viburnum dentatum) – Zones 2-8. This viburnum will grow 6-10′ tall and wide, and is a popular choice for fall foliage color in the landscape. Like most viburnums, Arrowwood is easy to grow in a wide variety of garden conditions and will tolerate full sun to part shade. White flowers provide spring beauty and summer fruit attracts birds to the garden. This viburnum Fall color will have yellow to orange or burgundy-red fall colors, adding lots of beauty to the autumn garden. (more…)