When you have a lawn with traditional landscaping, it can seem like a waste of green space to simply grow decorative hedges and flowers. Edible landscaping is the integration of food plants with ornamental or decorative landscaping elements. With the often colorful and aesthetically-pleasing appearance that fruits and vegetables provide, edible landscaping is a perfect mixture of beauty and utility.
Why Edible Landscaping Is Beneficial
This practice not only creates a lovely, natural design for your home’s exterior, but it also provides you with food. You can save money on fruits and vegetables at the store, and by growing them yourself you won’t be facing any unknown pesticides or chemicals. With edible landscaping, you’ll also be making your home worth more. Any type of landscaping can create a 15% improvement on a home’s return on investment. As you are utilizing your outdoor space well, edible landscaping is environmentally friendly. To anyone looking to buy your home, this smart eco-centric landscaping will be sure to impress. The average home in 2016 was sold within four weeks of being listed, but attractive and inventive edible landscaping could make it sell even more quickly when the time comes.
What You Can Plant In Edible Landscaping
The design in edible landscaping is an important factor, but you also need to plant fruits and vegetables that won’t be immediately eaten by any wild animals. Unless you have a fence that can protect your landscaping from hungry critters, consider these plant foods that are generally unattractive to wildlife.
Bean pods are typically safe from any munching creatures as they find the leaves of the plant much more attractive. To keep the whole plant safe, you can grow pole varieties in flower borders. Encircle the plant bottoms with chicken wire, and your beans will grow vertically, making a nice height variation for your landscape.
With their vibrant purple hue, eggplants make an excellent addition to your edible landscape. Better yet, most animals avoid eggplants. It could be because they are scratchy and thorny or because they are tempted by other plants. Flea beetles tend to target eggplant leaves, but you can lessen their damage by interspersing them among scented flowers.
While annual and biennial herbs, such as basil, cilantro, and parsley, are very appealing to animals, perennial herbs do not have the same effect. These woodier herbs include thyme, rosemary, mint, sage, oregano, and lavender.
How You Can Jump Into Edible Landscaping
You may be ready to plant every vegetable you can think of in your yard, but hold on just a moment. Experts in edible landscaping recommend starting small, with a 100 square foot plot at most. Start the plot in an area that receives at least six hours of full sun daily and that drains well. Your starting landscape will need plenty of shade too. As your landscape grows, make sure to intersperse some non-edible plants in as well. Many edible landscapes end up growing more food than necessary, and you wouldn’t want to have more waste than you started with.
For those with a green thumb and a knack for design, edible landscaping makes for a very rewarding investment. Start yours today and make sure to have fun with it!