Take a virtual tour of our edible landscape, where we mixed edibles into the landscape for a softer, gentler approach to edible gardening that can be approved of by neighbors.
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Edible landscaping is an art. It is a two-way balance of both enhancing a landscape with colorful edibles, and utilizing that same conventional landscape as camouflage for other edibles.
An Edible Landscape Tour in Pictures
It can be challenging to figure out what you’re seeing in a virtual tour of an edible landscape, however. So we’ll take a look at our edible landscape in the pictures below, where I’ve attempted to label everything for you.
Want to grow fruits, vegetables, and herbs in your front yard landscape without sacrificing curb appeal? Check out my mini guide, The Permaculture Inspired Edible Landscape.
Design comes with time and practice, trial and error. It has taken me some years to figure out which combinations I like. But you don’t need a lot of space to yield a lot of produce.
Any new path begins with the first step, however small! Today, just plant something edible (for you or the wildlife) and see what happens!
Here are some of my favorite books on edible landscaping:
- Edible Landscaping by Rosalind Creasy
- Edible Landscaping with a Permaculture Twist: How to Have your Yard and Eat it, Too by Michael Judd
- The Edible Front Yard: The Mow-Less, Grow-More Plan for a Beautiful, Bountiful Garden by Ivette Soler
- The Beautiful Edible Garden: Design a Stylish Outdoor Space Using Vegetables, Fruits, and Herbs by Leslie Bennett and Stefani Bitner
- Landscaping with Fruit by Lee Reich
- Gardening Like a Ninja: A Guide to Sneaking Delicious Edibles into your Landscape by Angela England
What edible landscaping combinations have you tried?
Alexis Watters says
Totally gorgeous! How mature is this landscape? I aspire to this level of pretty and useful in my own front yard. This is only our second spring here, though.
Thanks! We started developing our landscape in 2008, so it’s been 7 years. Beautiful landscapes take patience, you’ll get there 🙂
It’s really hard to read the text on most of your pictures. Higher contrast colors, or background boxes to provide contrast, would help considerably.
Very cool topic, though.
Thanks for the feedback. I agree the labeling could use an overhaul. With limited time constraints, I erred on the side of not letting perfect be the enemy of good 🙂
Looks so great, you must weed all the time! My gardens start out like this but you do a great job at the maintenance!!!
Thank you! I spend about 2 hours a week on maintenance. Half of that time is spent weeding, but I’ve found that planting more edible perennials and fewer edible annuals – especially in the front yard – has helped me maintain it easier.
Betsy Kunz says
I can read the text just fine. (I’m reading it on my desktop) I was curious, how productive are your fig bushes and your currants? How do you eat those? (fresh? dry them?) I like the idea of planting edible bushes but those are things that aren’t part of my normal diet although I’ve certainly heard of them and am not opposed to trying new things.
Figs and currants are both highly productive. Be sure to buy fig trees that are appropriate to your growing zone. Nurseries (local and online) can able to help. I like this page of fig recipes. Here are some of the ways I use currants.
mary dicerni says
I have a pile of rocks like you do in the front, and cannot keep the weeds out… Have a plastic now, but they now come around the edges… It looks cool… love your work.
Yes, weeds in the rocks. You know what I think would be cool? Sprinkling white alyssum seeds throughout the rocks. Maybe the white flowers would crowed out any weeds and prevent weed seeds from germinating. Somebody should try this and report back to the rest of us 🙂
I use a natural weed killer made of vinegar, epson salt and water to spray on my rock borders to keep the weeds at bay.
Beautiful and very inspiring. I be interested to see diagrams of your plantings to help understand how you fit things together, especially how you fit annuals amongst perennials.
I’m also curious how your plantings look, especially your yard out front, in the spring before they’re in their full glory. As a newbie, my stuff looks pretty sparse, and then there is the winter to spring transition.
As I have the desire to dig up my lawn more and more and add plants or shrubs or trees, I wonder how to handle the transition from lawn to my plantings to try to keep things looking somewhat neat. I’m kind of afraid I’ll create chaos. It looks like you cut the sod straight in places, which looks like it works great.
In the first few years of the edible front yard, we had a lot of chaos! It took us a while to figure out what was going to work and what wasn’t. Over time, I’ve transitioned my front yard to be almost exclusively perennial edibles (fruit) and flowers. That’s because I didn’t like having empty spaces in the off season or right after a harvest of vegetable crops.
Before my currant bushes were fully grown, I planted a hedgerow of broccoli in front of them. It looked like a real hedge! I hope to write more in the near future about all the tricks I learned in my front yard experiment. In the meantime, if you discover any tricks that work, please let me know 🙂
Jennifer Arrow says
What’s the purple flower (non-edible)? Not the echinacea, the spiky one?
It is called Blazing Star (Liatris). It’s a great one for attracting bees. It’s also deer resistant!
Wow, your garden is fantastic! I am so happy to have found your website. I love your choice of edibles and annuals and perennials. You have given me so many great ideas. Thank you! We are incorporating edibles in our garden this year. We have a deer problem here so it is a challenge to find plants they will leave alone in our front yard. The back is fenced . We are totally redoing our gardens to plant more edibles, beneficials and pollinator friendly plants. It is wonderful to see your garden , thanks again!
It is challenging to protect landscaping from deer in an aesthetic way. With some protection, the following garden veggies are said be deer resistant (depending on how hungry the local deer are):
Good luck with your garden projects. Thanks for stopping by 🙂
Nice looking garden. I really liked your 3 bin compost pile. I am currently eating tomatoes that were saved and cloned just before last year’s freeze. My question is what is going the 4th, round compost bin used for?
The round bins hold leaves from both our yard and the neighbors’ yards. When we add food scraps to the compost bin, we cover them with a few handfuls of leaves from the round bins (there is one on either side of the 3-bin system). Any leaves we don’t use by the end of the season can be used as mulch to make room for collecting more leaves. Here is a more detailed look at our compost system. Cheers!
Patricia Blackburn says
i had a beautiful bamboo living fence in my front yard with a bamboo door. it provided enough privacy so i could completely convert my front yard to a living garden. I planted mounds (perinnial and annual)…using mostly wood chips for the berry bushes ,lavender, rosemary, and more compost for the vegatables.
eventually i converted my carport to a living roof, and did the whole yard- it was very beautiful, and after planting as many semi dwarf and dwarf fruit trees as i could, i then got chickens (the next step). ..good luck on your journey to food freedom and a yard that actually has intention and works with nature!
That sounds beautiful. Thanks for sharing!
I’ve always loved your blog. I have been a full-time professional Permaculture Designer for over 7 years and I have just now started blogging about it. I have always strived to make Edible Landscaping and Permaculture beautiful, I feel this is something we have in common. Thanks for such great articles, it’s very inspiring as I start my blogging journey.
Take care and keep up the great work.
Jana, thanks for following along! I’m sure you’re doing great work in the world of edible/permaculture landscape design. Best of luck on your blogging journey 🙂
What a beautiful garden! What is the white flowered edging below the Echinacea and chard? I’m looking for something to edge my future edible front yard too!
The flower is sweet alyssum. Read more about Swiss chard and sweet alyssum.
Kevin Tunis says
In picture #1 what is the multi trunk tree in the center of the picture?
Isn’t it lovely? I wish I knew. The former owners planted it.