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Nothing beats the Economics of Gardening

A couple of years ago I watched a YouTube video where a man broke down the mind-bending productivity that is built into the nature of the humble tomato. That video made a huge impression on me and when talking with my friend about her plans for a tomato garden I mentioned some of the details I learned from that video. She was impressed with the scale that could be accomplished in such a short amount of time. Plants are kind of amazing like that.


The main point of that video can be summarized like this:

1) Buy a packet of tomato seeds. You will spend about $3 and get 50 seeds. ($0.06/each)

2) Plant those 50 seeds in good soil at the right time and 80+% will germinate (40 plants).

3) Now, when they are 6" tall you can sell those healthy plants for $2 each, grossing $80, Or...

4) Plant those 40 tomatoes in your garden, feed them well, protect them, and water as needed.

5) During the season, each plant will produce about 40 tomato fruits on average.

Depending on variety the average tomato weighs 6oz., so you could easily harvest 1,600 fruits or 600 pounds of tomatoes and sell them for $2 a pound grossing $1,200. Or...

6) Each tomato fruit contains about 40-50 seeds (which is what you started with).

However, now you have 1,600 tomatoes each containing the number of seeds you had in the beginning. You could package them & sell those seeds for $3 a packet grossing $4,800! Or...

7) Retain the seeds for an expanded garden the next season.

1,600 tomatoes contain about 64,000 total seeds. Assuming an 80% fertility rate, that has the potential to result in 51,200 tomato plants!


Return on Investment:

  • Initially you spent $3 for 50 seeds.

  • There were likely other costs for soil, fertilizer, water, & labor that we did not mention.

  • If you stopped at step #3 and sold all your plants you would realize a 2,667% increase.

  • If you grew out your plants and sold the fruit you would realize a 40,000% increase!

  • If you decided to keep the seeds from your full potential harvest you would start the next season with 160,000% more than you started with.

What if you wanted to eat some of your home-grown tomatoes?

Even if you kept the whole harvest to yourself, and ate 3 ripe tomato every day for a full year, you would still have 20,200 seeds left from just one season. That is still a whopping 40,400% Gain!


So, now you know the economic potential of gardening I share with my friends.

What will do you with this incredible investing tip?



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