Grow an Edible Landscape
The vegetable garden isn't the only place to put plants you can eat. There’s a wide variety of shrubs and vining plants that look amazing and taste pretty great, too. You can grow an edible landscape all around your property.
Edible landscapes aren't just attractive, they’re functional. Standard vegetables like lettuce don’t look very good outside the vegetable garden, but there are lots of edible plants that look beautiful. The best news? You can enjoy fresh edibles throughout the year.
Looking for a beautiful border or a nice ground cover? Choose one that you can eat. Thyme is popular in herb gardens, but why stop there? The attractive foliage and flowers makes thyme an easy choice for any edible landscape.
Rosemary is another fragrant edible herb that’s also very beautiful. Grow it as a groundcover or a small shrub to enjoy the scent and the taste.
Sage, another type of herb, doesn't only grow in shades of green. Different sage plants grow foliage that’s bluish or silvery and adds beautiful coloring to any landscape.
Berries bring lots of color to the landscape, and berry bushes and vines bring a lot to your outdoor spaces.
Strawberries look great as a groundcover, and before they produce fruit in summer the plant bears beautiful flowers in spring. The leaves change color in the fall, so strawberry plants are pretty in almost every season. Blackberries and raspberries both grow low to the ground as well, and produce very tasty and colorful fruits.
Blueberries grow as shrubs, and look pretty amazing. The rich blue fruits are unmistakable, and their taste can be enjoyed at every meal. Blueberries are great in jellies, pies, pancakes and even wine. Elderberries, delicious in winemaking, also grow as attractive shrubs.
Grapevines will grow where you lead them. Use a trellis to create an edible wall. Gravevines will also grow along fences and up poles. The leaves are almost as pretty as the fruits. They change color in fall and grow with a distinctive shape.
Other Eaters of Edible Landscapes
An edible landscape looks great and provides you with plenty of goodies, but its biggest asset is also the biggest problem. Edible landscapes are edible, not just for you but for a variety of wildlife. Your landscape may start attracting rabbits, squirrels and a variety of other pests. Depending on where you live, you could even be attracting larger pests, like deer.
You’ll have to take measures to keep pests away. To keep things natural, try planting pest-repelling plants that drive animals from your edibles. Various alarms and scents are sold at home and garden stores as well.
Eating Your Landscape
If you’re going to eat your edible landscape, be careful about how you treat the plants. Be wary of using a lot of pesticides, which may contain chemicals that are unfit for digestion. Keep your plants healthy, and they should produce healthy fruits and greens.