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Portland, OR
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Question by fuges
January 21, 1998
I am looking for a study done by NGA that looks at the $ amount people can save by having a garden. e.g. on average a 20X20 plot will save a family $500/year.

Answer from NGA
January 21, 1998
The rule-of-thumb we have used in the past is that a well maintained vegetable garden planted to a mix of the most popular vegetables will yield an average of about 9/10ths of a pound of fresh produce per square foot of garden area. Obviously some peoplewill get more by succession planting and other intensive garden techniques and others less if they let their garden go. Under this scenario, a 400 square foot garden could yield 360 lbs. of produce. If in-season fresh produce prices average $1.25 per pound, a garden of this size can produce $500 worth of vegetables. This would be the gross return not including the costs for seeds, plants, fertilizer and other imputs. This also does not include the value for people's time spent in their garden.
There are some yield tables in the back of John Jeavon's
book "How to Grow More Vegetables" that provide a range of the possible yields for individual types of vegetables that may also be helpful.

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