|Wando Garden Pea|
I’ve gardened for years, my first garden actually a vegetable garden. But after that it was lots of indoor plants as that was all I had room for in apartments and the like. Then my husband and I bought our first place and we beautified it with flowers, vines, shrubs and trees. Our next house had a big yard -big enough for flowers and vegetables -but then we had our little kids to consider. We wanted them to run and play and not worry about disturbing anything. Then came a pool, which was wonderful, but left, at least in my mind, little space for anything other than a few flowers.
Now on two acres, there is plenty of room for whatever. But I’ve decided to keep the edibles in an area I call “The Garden.” Simply because my approach to the rest of the place is that after I get something started it is on its own. I can’t water or cover plants all over two acres, it’s just too much work. Keeping my vegetables in one place helps me tend them properly. I can water them regularly and watch out for all the perils that can become them.
Just because I choose to group all my vegetables together doesn’t mean they can’t hold their own in any ornamental garden. What I’ve found, to my surprise, is how lovely and showy many of them can be. Eggplants are, I will admit, a little boring as they are leafing out, but when they set fruit they steal the show just as much as any flower. My Asian Mustard Greens where absolutely gorgeous, big and bold green fans brushed with deep purple.
Now, this spring it is my green peas. Does it surprise me that they look just like the Sweet Peas we used to grow in Southern California? They don’t have the myriad of colors, just a simple white bloom. But they are lovely and the bonus is that when the bloom fades you have this adorable, delicious pea pod. And we all know how attractive and photogenic they are.
So this trend of putting edibles in the landscape is one that I hope grows (literally), especially for urban and suburban gardeners. If you want to give your neighbors somthin’ to talk about put an artichoke or eggplant or some english peas in your front yard.