Edible landscaping is a great way to grow your own food while maintaining a beautiful space. There will be a wide variety of plants you may wish to grow on your plot of land, and you will likely make choices by finding a balance of what looks beautiful and what brings the kind of produce you are hoping for at the end.
Including perennial vegetables in your edible landscape is a wise move because it will bring returns for your labor each and every year that your landscape is maintained. So how does one go about incorporating them, and what do you need to know about the process?
The Benefits of Perennial Vegetables
There are many reasons to add perennial vegetables to your edible landscaping plans. One great reason is their ability to build healthy soil, due to the fact that they need not be tilled. They also have the ability to fertilize themselves and neighboring plants by causing nitrogen to be fixed in the soil.
Perennial vegetables tend to be low maintenance plants, and have the ability to resist pests and severe weather. Even if you only have a few of these vegetables in your landscape, you will be glad you chose them.
Find Out Which Vegetables are Perennial
There are several vegetables that are perennial. Perennial means that the plant dies back to the ground each fall and grows again in the spring. Therefore, these plants will be those that you dont need to purchase every year, saving yourself money and time.
Some of the most popular perennial vegetables are asparagus and rhubarb. Artichoke, wild leeks and certain onions are also perennial vegetables that add flavor to any table. Kale, with its beautiful deep green hue, is often grown as an annual, but is actually a perennial vegetable.
Decide What Vegetables You Will Use
Unless you are planning on giving away your produce, choose vegetables that you love and will use when they are fully grown. It makes no sense to grow a large section of asparagus if you can’t stand the taste of it. And no matter how beautiful rhubarb may look when growing, there is no point incorporating it if you will not use it later. Choose perennial vegetables that you enjoy consuming.
Decide How to Incorporate Them into Your Landscape
Now that you have decided on your choice of perennial vegetables, you will want to make decisions on where you will place them, and what amount you will have. It may depend on whether you are incorporating them into an already designed landscape, or if you are starting the entire landscape from scratch. Make a drawing on a sheet of paper, and design your plan for where you want each plant to be.
Take into consideration which benefits you are looking for. For example, if you wish for another plant to utilize your perennial vegetables fertilizing capabilities, then plant them close together. If you have a corner that is difficult to get to and you need a low maintenance plant there, then one of your perennial vegetables may fare better than another choice.
Perennial vegetables are a great way to bring beauty to your edible landscape. When you include them, you are giving your garden an extra chance at success. Pick your favorites, make some plans, and you will thank yourself for it both now and in the future, year after year.