Edible Garden Landscape Ideas
Edible Garden Landscaping, also called front-yard gardening, edible landscaping, garden landscaping all refer to the same type of gardening practice, one that focuses on plants that provide food – fruits, vegetables, nuts, herbs, roots and so on. There are many benefits to an edible landscape including saving money on groceries and enjoying food that is fresher and more nutritious than the produce in our supermarkets which is often picked before it is ripe (nutrients aren’t developed yet either) and shipped long distances.
Is edible landscape gardening for you?
Do you want to grow food for your family to help reduce grocery expenses and help recession-proof your household budget? Then this type of gardening is a perfect way to help achieve that goal. Seeds cost next to nothing and in just a few weeks you’ll be able to start enjoying the fresh greens or radishes that you’ve planted as a border planting. Other plants started from seed take longer, but they are well worth the wait!
Buying established nursery plants is also an option, and while it’s more expensive than seeds, you’ll be able to enjoy home-grown treats sooner than if you started from seed and the cost is still less than what you’d spend at the supermarket for the same items.
Where there’s a Will, There’s a Way
A large space is not required to grow fruits and vegetables, so don’t let something like living in a city apartment hold you back. The key to achieving your goal of growing your own foods is to use the space you have as efficiently as possible. Even apartment dwellers can grow herbs, greens, tomatoes, and even specialized varieties of fruits. Many years ago, I lived in a courtyard-style apartment building in Chicago and was able to grow herbs and lettuce on my window sill! Container gardens are easy to establish and care for; all you need to do is decide how many containers you can accommodate, and provide water and light.
Doesn’t growing your own food takes a lot of time?
When you integrate fruits and vegetables into your landscape or a container garden, it doesn’t take as much time as you’d think to take care of the plants, garden beds, etc. In fact, there’s been many an evening after work that I end up wandering around the yard looking for something to do! This is partly because of the type of plants you’ll be adding to your landscape.
For example, an edible groundcover growing in a garden bed helps squeeze out weeds, thus eliminating the time you need to spend weeding. Utilize the practice of companion planting you’ll also be able to control harmful pests naturally – yet another time saver. I also highly recommend using soaker hoses. You can water plants slowly at the roots where it’s most beneficial and causes the least leaf damage, and you don’t have to worry about timing the sprinklers, moving the hose, trampling plants and so forth.
Admittedly, when it’s time to harvest the garden bounty, I spend more time in the yard and kitchen. But, when you’re picking foods you’ve grown yourself, the extra time is rewarded by fresh delicious food that is not only good for you but is helping to trim your grocery costs.
The possibilities are nearly limitless.
Think outside the garden plot. You don’t have to have a dedicated vegetable garden to grow great tasting fruits and vegetables. Plant strawberries, nasturtiums, low-growing kitchen herbs, or a creeping berry as a ground cover. Train peas and pole beans to climb a trellis or arbor, or plant grapes vines as a perennial option. Add a fruit or nut tree or two for shade, and use berry bushes for shrubs or hedges. Even in neighborhoods that require perfectly manicured lawns and landscapes, edible plantings are a great option! They flower in the spring, produce attractive fruit and have attractive foliage in the fall. And, they can help reduce the amount of work you need to do to maintain the look of your yard. The bigger your landscape beds and more edible plants you have, the less lawn there is to care for!
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