Three years ago I began to apply a relatively new design trend to my landscapes: Blended Gardens. I had interest in adding edibles to my gardens but had no space (or desire for that matter) to plot out a “farmers row” of veggies and herbs. So I began to assess how I might infuse edibles into my existing ornamentals, thereby creating blended gardens. Although I am still experimenting, the outcomes of blending my gardens has been both fun and a challenge to my garden creativity. My lettuce is grown nearby the crabapple, coral bells, Canadian ginger and assorted annuals, while my herbs reside within my butterfly-friendly garden. What a concept! I can eat and enjoy my garden in the same space!
This modern version of blended gardens has many key advantages:
- gardens composed of plants both beautiful and productive make good sense: “Common Sense and Sustainability”
- eat and have fun with your garden all in one space
- makes good use of small urban spaces
- eat foods free of pesticides
- diverse gardens are more resistant to pests and supports our pollinators
- supports your creative style
- allows you to share your bounty and support your local food pantry like our Plant A Row Saratoga County initiative!
Blended Gardens are a great way to keep garden practices “sensible and sustainable”. To design a blended garden simply apply the basic concepts you would to any new garden area. The location must be right: right plant right place. This year I was able to extend by lettuce crop by selecting an existing perennial bed that gets morning sun and afternoon shade. It has reduced late season burn out. Make sure your soil is nutrient rich and well draining. Know your edible growing habits. Do you need support for upright? Will the variety flourish in a container? I prefer to use ornamental garden trellises versus traditional farmer staking in my blended gardens to keep the aesthetic flow going. Most importantly, grow what you like and will actually use for your family. Enjoy the edibles produced in your blended garden while enjoying the beauty of your garden.
As always….applying common sense and sustainability to garden practices. Want to learn more about blended gardens? Garden Goddess SS will be expanding upon this introduction at the 2nd Annual Dig Into Gardening Day at Longfellows Hotel and Conference Center April 28th 2018. So mark your calendar! Need some coaching to get you started? The Garden Goddess schedules onsite coaching so contact her for appointment availability.