Ask Adam #11: How much to grow for a family of four for a year?

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Jim has written in – with a very apt question indeed… How much to grow for a family of four for a year That’s a very good question, and this is something that’s been on my mind as well… So, before I try and answer this one… I once tried to grow a victory garden, […]

Jim has written in – with a very apt question indeed…

How much to grow for a family of four for a year

That’s a very good question, and this is something that’s been on my mind as well…

So, before I try and answer this one… I once tried to grow a victory garden, to try and be more sufficient and for one reason or another, it didn’t play out as I’d hoped. Looking back, I think I was so focussed on growing for the year as a whole, which is quite a daunting task – where what I should have been growing for the month (if that makes sense).

It’s very difficult, (almost a full time job) to be fully self sufficient all year round – but if you can reduce the food bill, and the strain on the shops here and there, then I’d definitely Get Growing.

I’ve done some searching in my books and online and I keep coming back to this growing guide, handed out during the dig for victory campaign… It’s how to grow for a family of five, on a typically sized allotment plot.

That said, it can be argued that you don’t need that much space to grow a decent amount of food to keep you going.

A lot of items, including carrots, potatoes, radishes, onions, courgettes and tomatoes can easily be grown in pots, containers and grow bags.

In terms of how much you need, I guess I’d start keeping track of what you’re going through food wise, look at what vegetables you’re most using and how much – this can vary from person to person, and family to family.

In terms of buying what you need, in my experience, one packet of seeds, onion sets, potato tubers of whatever it is you want to grow is ample for the year or season head.

I’d start planning month to month – and Charles Dowding has done a good job of putting together this monthly growing guide.

This is also a good guide here from the Dig for Victory Campaign that I would say still applies today.

I hope the above is useful to you – and I’ll love to know how you get on! 🙂


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  1. […] exploits, but he also invites your questions, creating a very useful gardening resource for all. How much veg do you need to grow to feed a family of four for a year? Check out Adam’s […]




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