Friday, September 21, 2018

Try Gardening to Get These 8 Benefits

Photo by rawpixel

Everyone needs a patch of green. Whether you're in the city or looking to live in a house and lot for sale in Laguna, you must get your hands busy. Once in a while, you should spend time on your porch or backyard. If these aren't available, you can make an indoor garden or grow a few seedlings on hanging pots. The possibilities are endless.

There are different things you can grow. If you have space, you should try growing some produce. You can save on grocery shopping when you don't have to purchase your fruits or vegetables. Other than crops, you can also tend flowers. Get some seeds of your favorite herbs and watch them bloom. But if you don't have the patience and the skill to grow greens, then you should turn to succulents and ferns. These plants don't require a lot of tending. They only need water now and then.

These are some garden ideas you can try in your new home. But, why should you try gardening? Would you get something out of it besides free food? Unknown to a lot of people, cultivating plants and spending time with soil has a lot of benefits. Below is the list of benefits you get when you immerse in gardening.

1. It relieves stress

Most of the time, gardening requires you to be outdoors. Even succulents need sun exposure now and then. The fresh air and sunlight can uplift your spirit. Meanwhile, moving back and forth will make you sweat. Sweating can lessen the levels of your cortisol which is also the stress hormone. Low levels of cortisol support your immune system, boosts your memory, and minimizes your risk of heart disease. Meanwhile, constant movement prevents you from getting obese.

2. It makes you confident

Gardening also makes you sure about yourself. You can feel a sense of pride and achievement when you see the seeds transforming from a tiny plant into a fruit-bearing tree.

3. It connects you to other people

You should consider gardening to your list of interests. It doesn't only give you a chance to be outdoors. It also offers you a chance to get to know other people in your community. It's a chance for you to be part of a group of people who are into the same things as you are. You can talk about your plants, how you grow them, and the different methods of propagating plants. You can get advice from seasoned growers on herbs, flowers, and vegetables. In exchange, you can offer a few nuggets you learned along the way.

4. It gives you a break from being indoors

Some plants need water twice a day. Thus, you need to be out of your couch if you want your plants to survive. When you have plants, you don't have to stay all day indoors. You need to go out. You must bring in your succulents after an hour, or they'll wilt under the sun. You have to check if the fruit is ripe and ready for harvest. In short, it keeps you busy. Time in front of the TV is now a luxury.

5. It imparts values to your children

If you want the kids to get their eyes off screens and devices, you should make gardening part of their lives. You children can learn several values when they learn how to tend to your backyard greens. For one, they will learn to be patient. They will realize that growing plants don't happen in an instant. At the same time, they get to appreciate the value of hard work. Plants don't thrive by themselves. They need a few things to survive which they won't get by themselves. 

Lastly, it will teach them things about nature and wildlife. It will show them where food comes from and how it grows. It can influence them to pick healthy, fresh food over processed ones. Most of all, it can help understand the limitations of natural resources.

6. It's your ticket to Vitamin D

Being outdoors exposes you to sunlight. You can feel the sun on your skin and enable it to absorb as many nutrients as it can get. Gardening pushes you to soak up Vitamin D which helps the body break down calcium to make the bones strong.

7. It's a form of exercise

Gardening will make you bend, lift, stretch, and twist. These movements all warm up and work the small muscles in your body. All of these can improve your strength, stamina, and flexibility.

8. It positively impacts the environment

Even if you're starting out with a plant or two, these have a positive impact to the Earth. Plants absorb carbon dioxide and other toxins in the air. When you raise a garden, you are combating air pollutants. You are also making use of run-off rainwater. Your plants can absorb the harmful pollutants to prevent them from reaching lakes and other bodies of water.

You won't miss out on these benefits when you consider growing a garden. You won't only see your plants thrive, but you can also watch them positively impact your life and the community.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

Business and Farming: The Basic Steps of Organizing Your Accounts

If you want to transform your small weekend affair into one of the highly-earning organic stores Manila, then you must know the basics of handling your finances. You won't know if you're making a profit if you don't understand the formula on how to tally your income and expenses. Moreover, you need to put your money in a safe place. You don't want your hard-earned money mixing with the budget you set for your home. It can result in a disaster.

Whether you're in it for the safety of your finances or hoping to grow your keep, you should know the necessary steps of organizing your accounts. Staying organized minimizes mistakes and ensures you're on the path to hitting your targets. Lastly, it can make things easy once you start expanding your business. You won't have to look for receipts, tax records, and other essential documents.

Below are the things you must know when organizing your accounts.

1. You must have a separate bank account.

Your business account should not be the same as the account you use to save for retirement or other big-ticket purchases. You can start by setting up a business checking account. You can also get a business credit card for your business to build credit. At the same time, having a credit card lessens the incidence of mixing business assets and personal buys.

2. Pick the right bank

Don't open an account or transact with the nearest bank in your area. You should survey which bank offers the least fees. Most business checking accounts apply charges higher than most personal bank accounts. You should pay close attention to these, so you don't end up with expensive rates.

3. Learn the items on your financial statements

Your business financial statement shows your company's performance. At the same time, financial statements can be your guide to assessing past performance and managing expectations. These can also be your means of communicating with interested parties. You can reach out to creditors, investors, and analysts through your financial performance.

Accountants are the only ones who can prepare your financial statements. It's easy to leave everything to their hands to ensure you have the papers you need in your hands. However, you must also know which things are part of your statements. That way, you can check if there are wrong entries or discrepancies in your balances.

4. Establish a way for organizing receipts

You should keep all the receipts from all your business transactions. You never know when you might need it. Thus, you should have a system for storing your receipts. You can keep it in an envelope or a box. You can store them in any place as long as you can bring them out when you need them. Also, they must be separate from your family records and other personal papers.

5. Categorize your expenses

When you're running a small business, you can easily mistake a fee from the other. For instance, your family luncheon can be part of your "meals and entertainment" category even when you didn't discuss business the duration of your meal. To separate your expenses, you must first identify the groups they would fall. Separate meals, travel, transportation, utilities, and business-related purchases. Knowing the divisions helps you easily categorize the costs incurred. It also enables you to determine if the fees should be filed under your business or not.

6. Have a bookkeeping system

Bookkeeping is different from accounting. It is the daily process of recording transactions, putting them in the right category, and reconciling bank statements. Meanwhile, accounting makes sense of these records to create the financial statements. Now that things are clear, it's time you determine the bookkeeping method to use.

You can design a system of your own, or you can hire a part-time bookkeeper to oversee your cash flow. Once you have enough revenue, you can have an in-house bookkeeper and an accountant. You also have to determine if you will use the cash or accrual method of accounting.

7. Establish your payroll system

When you have people helping you out or working under you, you must first establish if they are regular employees or a freelancer. You'll need to have a payroll schedule and ensure your paying taxes correctly. Be sure you know how much you spend on each person and that you are providing the right compensation.

8. Know which payment schemes to offer to your customers

You must find different ways to accept payments. You can set up a merchant account or a third party processor. A merchant account is a type of account that enables you to process credit card payments. The payment gateway you choose depends on you and your customers. If most of your customers prefer to use their e-wallet or swipe their cards, then you should have a merchant account or a third party payment processor.

When setting up your business, you should not only think of your products and the overall setup of your store. You should also take care of your accounts, think of how you accept payment, and how you will record your expenses. These tips are your guide to covering the necessary aspect of your accounts. That way, you won't get lost once you move your shop from a weekend farmers market to your official store address.

Friday, September 7, 2018

Business and Farming: The Baby Steps of Joining Weekend Markets

Photo taken by Tomas Anton Escobar

Nowadays, people are becoming smart shoppers. They are expanding their shopping and food options. They become open to the idea of buying their food from organic stores and going to weekend market Manila. They support farmers, small businesses and establishments who are selling organic produce and homegrown products.

Thus, it's an excellent time for farmers to take part in bazaars or weekend markets. Setting up booth helps them connect with customers and showcase their crops while earning more money than usual. But to be successful in starting the business, you must first know a few things. The tips below serves as your guide on how to combine farming with business and start selling.

1. Visit different markets

Not all markets are the same. Before you join one, you must first find a market that fits your needs and helps you accomplish your goals. Taking a look at the bazaars enables you to see if they're a good fit for you.

Each market has a culture and a vibe. Some markets are filled with busy shoppers while others focus on providing a social setting. They have music and activities for kids. If you want to get to know how the market is like, you should talk to other merchants and growers. Recurring shoppers can also give you a sense of how things work in the market.

2. Ask about the rules

Markets have a set of rules for all sellers to follow. You should check in with the organizers to see what types of items are allowed. You can also ask if they provide the tables and booth set-up. Last but the least, you should clear up the selling methods they practice before settling on a particular market.

3. Choose a small market

If it's your first time to be an entrepreneur, you can go ahead with a small market that doesn't require a vendor fee. You should also choose a setup that doesn't need you to invest a lot of equipment. You must first learn about the process, so you're bound to make mistakes. Knowing there is minimal risk ensures your mistakes won't have a negative impact on the business.

4. Be unique

You can find a lot of farmers already selling tomatoes and lettuce. People won't come to you if you have the same products as the rest of the vendors. Instead, you can offer a variety of unique type of produce. You can also try assembling bundles or kits to increase your products' appeal to customers.

You must also differentiate your products. It must be unique to those who see it. It can be different in size, shape or texture but it should come out in a positive light. You should highlight these characteristics to the people who pass by your booth.

5. Do a dry run

Before the actual selling day, you should set up your booth at home to see how it looks. It shows you everything fits helps you spot the areas you can improve.

6. Create a checklist

To ensure you don't leave anything at home, you should list everything you need to bring to the market. The list must contain the items to sell, tools and material you need to set up the booth and displays.

7. Pack the essentials

You'll be out for the whole day and interacting with people. You need the energy to think clearly when someone wants to bargain and to compute the change to give to your customers. Thus, you must have snacks and drinks for you and your team. Having something to quench your thirst and ease your hunger helps you feel comfortable and at ease while working.

8. Put the best products on display

When setting up your display, you should always pick the best ones. Go for the healthy looking vegetables and plump fruits. Avoid those with wilted leaves and bruises. Place your best display in front and center.

9. Stack your items

The arrangement of your items dictates how people perceive them. When you stack your pieces, it creates the illusion of abundance. Of course, people are drawn to things that look good or make them feel good. If you want customers to come to your stall, you should pile the goods instead of laying them out on the table. You can also hang them so shoppers can easily spot what's on sale.

10. Think of presentation

Other than the arrangement of your goods, you should also take note of your decorations. You should try placing tablecloths, trays and a few photos. All of these add interest to your booth. You should consider how customers perceive you. Don't show up in the market with messy hair, torn and dirty clothing. You should wash up and wear comfortable and clean clothing. People appreciate sellers who remain professional. They are also likely to buy from stores with sellers who look sharp and take care of themselves.

Weekend markets and fairs can be your first step to building your business. It can be your chance to find other growers who are interested in partnerships and exchanges. It also an avenue to meet and find loyal customers. To get these, you first must get started, and these tips are what you need to guide your journey. They are the pillars to your farming and entrepreneurial success.

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