Even if you don't have garden space you can get a few homegrown foods by adding a few choice vegetable plants to the scheme of your flower bed. Just pick your favorite veggies in unusual varieties. Good greens are lettuce, mustard, turnips, spinach, kale - curly or flat, come in all shades of green, red, purple, yellow and black.
You can get cabbages in purple, red, bluish, as well as green. If you get the winter decorative cabbages they even come in pink!- and they're still edible. You can grow beans as a great vine with flowers that are purple or red.
You know, I have always planned when I used to have enough money to do this very thing. Until i got to the garden center and saw all of the full lovely colorful, fragrant flowers in my face there, back then, most often special bargains for that day only! You have inspired me to try to grow some of my own again from beans, and other veggie seeds I've saved, and get on with it rather than to put it off, especially now that we are low income. One tip I want to encourage others with is that snow peas are w i n t e r beans that grow so well in cold fall or spring weather, taste terrific, and are so very expensive to buy in stores.
Every single person needs to try it. I had the best luck on the south side of a north fence that runs east and west with about 6 hours of direct sun and 3 hours of indirect sun. I had to do nothing more than plant beneath a trellis I made with heavy twine, water occasionally on warm days, watch closely, gather quickly, and keep gathering, for meals in minutes, and for freezing! God bless you. : )
I am careful to group my vegies together so the treatment I give them or the flowers do not cross over. The ones getting the same treatments can be near each other. I find my cherry/grape tomatoes and peppers work very well with the lilies or other plants needing daily water and 'encouragement' foods. Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) with bone meal planted with the plants. Miracle grow goes everywhere. Buggy gardens contain aphids, etc need a dish soap treatment, hard to walk in and eat raw vegies sprayed with that.
There is a lot of information out there about "urban agriculture" right now. Google it to get ideas about different ways to grow edible crops in small spaces, in containers, on rooftops, balconies and patios. When I lived in an apartment, I always grew a cherry tomato plant that grew along the railing of the balcony, a bowl shaped planter full of lettuce and herbs in pots. A lot can be done in small spaces and seeds, soil and planters can be purchased at dollar stores. You can be creative with planters as long as there is a hole in the bottom for drainage.
Yes, in the permaculture class I took it was recommended 40 percent flowers in a vegetable garden because bees will be attracted by color and scent, and pollinate everything in the vicinity; pollination causes fruit to set on your veggie plant [fruit meant in general sense].
I always plant some veggies in my flower gardens and in my window boxes too. The tomatoes look like trailing vines from the street and the pepper plants add height to my window boxes. Herbs also grow great in window boxes.
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