View Full Version : How much to plant to feed a family...

02-06-2009, 06:50 PM
I found this link that shows some basic plants and how many are recommended to grow per person. Of course you have to keep in mind that this is only an estimate since some people link or use some foods more than others. Me for example, I cannot get enough tomatoes for all I use them for. Kim


02-07-2009, 09:48 AM
Yeah, I agree, some of the stuff seems a bit low...... but it is a good guide to start from. Just like your garden, it needs to be "customized" to your tastes.

02-08-2009, 09:53 PM
The chart doesn't really apply to raised bed gardening. The general rule of thumb is to plant a 4'x4' per adult in your family at minimum. Then you have to think of variety. I like different kinds of tomatoes. I grow over ten varieties every year.

02-13-2009, 07:40 PM
I also thought that was a bit low too. I think I would add the two numbers together and then multiply by members of the family. That would cover just fresh consumption Some yield may be excessive and others just right. Better to have to much, than not enough... like I did this year.

02-15-2009, 12:34 AM
If you really are feeding your family from the garden - all of their vegetable needs and hopefully fruit too - it takes a lot. Especially if you eat abundantly of the plant families (which of course is good for you!). What you like to eat, how much of it you eat, and what your soil and growing climate will do to help or slow down production is all very specific to the individual circumstances. In addition, your goals are part of the equation - are you just supplementing purchases from others or are you desiring to provide 100% of your veggies and fruits for your family? Regardless, there is really nothing that replaces just learning by doing. It took me years of gardening to determine how much I really need each year of various items. Despite that, sometimes nature works against me and I don't get all that I wanted from a crop. Other times, I get a massive overproduction and am swimming in something until we are heartily sick of it! Each year of gardening will bring greater knowledge.

02-15-2009, 10:54 PM
Great info thanks much for posting.

02-16-2009, 11:29 AM
I'm always interested to see these charts. They never really make much sense for my family though. What I did, is sit down and figure out what fruits and veggies we actually eat and maybe a few that I wanted to try to work into our diet. I only have so much space, so I have to concentrate on a few things and the rest is gravy so to speak.

For us, we eat a lot of broccoli, sugar snap peas, green beans, carrots and tomatoes are a huge part of our diet. I figure a broccoli plant will be 3-4 meals for my family. If we eat it twice a week for 52 weeks, we'll need about 26 plants. I don't have the space for that, so I get as close as I can. Over the years I've added and subtracted based on what we use, what does well in the garden etc. I don't think there is anyway to scientifically come up with any definite numbers without a few years of playing with it. Plant what you eat and eat what you plant. Also keep in mind how you will preserve and store all this wonderful food.

02-18-2009, 10:28 AM
Check out this site on how many things to plant per person...it helps those of us even more that do raised bed gardening. It is worth taking the time to check out the site as well. Kim


Wow even better look at this archive list:

02-18-2009, 10:43 AM
Great site.... thanks, Kim!