Tips for building a homestead on a budget

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This post is underwritten by Maggie’s Farm Products, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

When we moved into our house four years ago, one of the reasons we fell in love with the location was because of the open acreage, gorgeous pecan orchard and preexisting barn. We knew we could build a small homestead here. And we have.

Over the past few years we have converted the barn to a chicken coop that houses 24 hens, we’ve built a thriving garden and planted fruit trees and vines around our home.

During the summer much of our food comes from our own yard. But I am going to be honest, gardening and homesteading are not cheap endeavors. I know it seems simple, you get a pack of seeds and water it and BOOM you have vegetables. But there is a lot more cost involved in that. Irrigation, watering, fertilizer, clearing space etc. etc. And then there is time. Never assume your time is worthless. It’s not. Add to that the fact that weather patterns, pests and disease are uncontrollable and unpredictable and can leave you with little to no crops.

But today I wanted to share a few ways so state a homestead on a budget. So let’s go!

1. Focus on fruits.

Fruit has a high return on investment. They are perennial and therefore do not require planting again and again. A few dollars will get you an awesome fruit tree, vine or bush and you will get fruit year after year if you fertilize and keep the pests away.

One our little two acres we have three varieties of blue berries, two varieties of grapes, blackberries, peaches, lemons, limes, pomegranate and satsumas.

We also have some perennial herbs like mint, and stevia. Because we live in a warm climate (on the gulf coast) we just leave these herbs outside on our porch and they return year after year.

Read: How to make your own Stevia extract

2.Low maintenance annuals are your bff

Bell peppers, eggplants and squash are all low maintenance vegetables that require little to no effort to yield a huge amount of vegetables. They are less prone to disease and blossom rot. So you won’t feel totally frustrated and you’ll actually get vegetables!

3. Use smart pest control.

I want to go the green product route, but I feel like I’ve been burned. 🤣 So many products I’ve tried failed and I wasted so much money.  Until Maggie’s Farm Products walked into my life.

This 3-in-1 spray kills bugs, mites and diseases that would harm my plants. Plus because it’s farm-to-home made its simply effective and safe around children and my chickens. Maggie’s Farm green products from Walmart are a great choice! 

4. Compost it up

Compost. Ahhh. The unsung hero of homesteading. I could really talk about composting and why I think everyone should do it for about an hour. But I won’t. However, you are probably throwing away the best fertilizer on a daily basis.

Coffee grounds, egg shells, fruit and vegetable scraps, banana peels, apple cores. The list goes on and on. And the thing about composting is that it’s super easy to do. We simple throw the food waste listed above in a pile near our garden and every now and then flip it with a pitchfork. We also add grass clippings to the mix. We do this year round and by the time planting season comes we have amazing, rich compost to put in our garden.

Here is a great article if you want to know more.

5. Use free stuff

You’d be surprised what you can use that others are throwing away. Pallets, tires, and old barrels all make wonderful raised bed gardens. You can also find free plants on Craigslist or Facebook market place and many libraries offer free seed programs.

Read: How to make a rain barrel in 10 minutes

I’d love to know. How have you saved money on your homestead? Leave me a comment below.