The edible oasis you've always wanted
If you're looking to create an edible oasis that's both functional and beautiful, we've got the inspiration you need! Edible gardens can take any form you can imagine, from winding paths to more formal designs.
Don't feel limited to the standard 4-foot by 8-foot rectangle. To help get your edible oasis off to a good start, we've provided a few landscape design tips and some amazing inspiration pieces. Check them out!
Design elements to consider:
- Size: Make sure you know how big the plants you want to use are at maturity, and space accordingly. Edibles especially can suffer if they are too crowded. Also, consider height. Use taller plants to provide a background, and shorter plants to fill in around the border.
- Texture: Mix and match plant textures. For example, use rough-leaved curly kale as a backdrop to smooth-leaved romaine lettuce.
- Color: Consider flower, leaf, and stem color, and mix and match to suit your preference. For a fall display, consider rainbow chard and yellow viola (viola flowers are edible). Also, consider bloom time and if you can, include plants that bloom during different times throughout the season to offer consistent interest.
- Personal taste: There are a couple of general design rules, such as if you're using small groupings plant in clumps of 3 or 5 and use complimentary colors (i.e. yellow with purple, orange with blue, red with green). Both of these principles focus on combinations that are naturally more attractive to the human eye. But, it really comes down to what YOU find beautiful. Make it your own. Design principles are only guidelines.
- Style: Do you envision a more formal garden, with distinguished lines and defined edges? Or are you more of a cottage style gardener, plopping plants in here and there throughout your garden? Before getting started, it's helpful to understand your gardening style and create an overall vision for your space. Going through some pictures and keeping them nearby will help.
We've provided you with a few ideas to get you started! Three things come to mind when we think edible oasis - pathways, beautiful structural elements, and seating:
Don't underestimate the value of a small space. Even without a formal yard, there's still plenty of room for edibles and greenery in this private patio scene. The cedar fence and raised beds paired with concrete elements give off a very tranquil vibe.
This quaint, formal edible garden is picturesque. Short, well-groomed hedges keep edibles contained and guide you along a gridded path and right up to a beautiful porch where you can take it all in.
A DIY rustic arch might be the welcoming touch your cottage-style edible landscape needs. Use it to grow vining edibles like pole beans or cucumbers.
We don't think you'll miss your lawn if you convert it into an edible garden. Compact, stone-lined beds separated by mulched paths provides a seamless transition into this meandering garden.
Most of us have front yard landscapes. Why not pack the space we have full of edibles and ornamentals, welcoming us every time we come home? If you're concerned about a manicured landscape, this might not be the solution for you. But, if you love a cottage garden, the only downside we see is that your guests may never make it to your front door!
If this isn't a practical edible oasis, then we don't know what is! Can you believe Tenth Acre Farm included so many edibles in a landscape that just blends in with the curb appeal?