Bartholomew takes Return-On-Investment to the Garden
New book analyzes what makes the most $ sense to plant
(Minneapolis, MN) Mel Bartholomew, founder of the groundbreaking Square Foot Gardening method is back with a return- on-investment look at our gardens; what we grow; what we eat; and what will give us the biggest bang for our buck. More harvest, less toil has always been the Square Foot mantra but the focus shifts in his latest book, Square Foot Gardening High Value Veggies: Homegrown Produce Ranked by Value (Cool Springs Press, February 2016). With a Bartholomew ROI mathematical formula – the team was able to analyze what veggies give us real value. In practical terms – what to plant to save money.
Most gardeners simply plant what’s easiest to grow; but Bartholomew encourages us all to take a closer look and keep in mind what’s the easiest to grow is likely to be the most widely produced and the lowest priced at the local supermarket. “The fact is, you might save a whole lot more money growing something a bit more in demand,” says Bartholomew. Before seed hits dirt this season, Bartholomew encourages every gardener to take-up his challenge and grow what produces real, money-saving value.
The formula uses an average price per pound to determine what a season’s worth of produce from any plant is worth. That value is measured against the cost of inputs to grow the plants over a season to calculate an overall ROI. Curtain please…
The homegrown veggie with the highest return on investment is… herbs! The runner-up: parsnip. And in third place: the cherry tomato.
Bartholomew and team looked at fifty-nine edible plants in this competition and the list of high-value garden winners features some surprises.
3. Cherry Tomato
5. Heirloom Tomato
8. Winter Squash
10. Hybrid Tomato
Financially the veggies that make the least sense to grow; some much beloved, but most simply don’t produce enough yield to combat a very low price in the supermarket:
2. Brussel Sprouts
3. Bell Pepper
4. Swiss Chard
8. Pole and Bush Bean
10. Green Cabbage
Bartholomew makes a sad salute to the potato. Dead last in a high value survey is something to note as the 2016 garden season kicks off. Look to plant herbs and heirloom tomatoes and tap into the acquired taste of root veggies; Bartholomew math confirms it’s the best place to put your garden dollars in 2016.
About the Author:
Mel Bartholomew is the founder and inventor of Square Foot Gardening and the author of All New Square Foot Gardening, the best-selling gardening book in America for a generation. The book has sold 2.5 million copies since Bartholomew wrote the first book in 1981. He hosted a PBS TV show for five years, and then was telecast for three more years on the Learning Channel and Discovery Network. Today, Bartholomew presides over a nonprofit SFG Foundation that encourages every household around the world to have a small garden and eat fresh, healthy vegetables that are uncontaminated.
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