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Edible Landscaping: Where Money Grows on Trellises

by Gabby Hyman, All About Lawns Columnist

Traditional gardens are usually planted in neat rows on a large plot of land, often right in the middle of a big backyard. But if you hate the backbreaking labor of putting in a garden every year, consider the increasingly-popular option: edible landscaping.

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Edible landscaping simply means placing fruits, vegetables, and herbs in places where you might normally place daisies and mums. You might be surprised to learn how traditional garden plants can make the most stunning borders, or how those long melon vines can jazz up a trellis with their showy flowers.

Want a few more ideas? Read on!

  • Strawberries are a beautiful plant from start to finish. Their white flowers pop in the springtime, and after the harvest, their leaves will become a deep russet--perfect to usher in the autumn. Plant them as ground cover where needed, or use them as an edging plant.
  • Tired of the same old shrubs? Plant bluberries or currants. They make the perfect edible hedge.
  • Grapevines love to climb. Training them to grow over an arbor makes for a beautiful addition to your landscaping, and harvesting the fruit will be a breeze.
  • Need something for that shady spot? Cabbage, cauliflower, spinach, beets, turnips, radishes, and some kinds of beans do very well in an area with a bit less sunlight.
  • Put some vibrant color in the mix with yellow sweet peppers or hot red pepper plants. Remember that most vegetable plants will flower out before the fruit matures, and the colors can be brilliant.
  • Pole beans can grow like crazy along fencerows, and their heart-shaped leaves are lovely.
  • Don't forget the herbs! Chives are beautiful when they show off their pink flowers. Lavender will give a burst of breathtaking color to your landscape design. For a nice surprise, plant thyme along your footpaths--it offers up a beautiful scent when the leaves are crushed under your foot.
  • Liven up your landscaping even more with small container gardens. Tomatoes work well for this, as do dwarf fruit trees.

How Does Your Garden Grow?

With careful planning of your landscape garden, you will have fresh fruits and vegetables throughout the growing season, in addition to the beautiful show the plants provide from spring to fall. Invest in a trellis and arbor, and visit your garden supply store to get fresh seeds. Your landscape garden will be the envy of the neighbors!

About the Author
Gabby Hyman has created online strategies and written content for Fortune 500 companies including eToys, GoTo.com, Siebel Systems, Microsoft Encarta, Avaya, and Nissan UK.

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