Foodscaping is becoming more of a “thing”–at least I hope that it is. I was probably a very early adopter, not because I am so very clever or such a trend setter, but because the best sun in my yard happened to also be where I was growing some wildlife plants. But I started foodscaping back in 1995.
This is my tiny vegetable garden. Along with the lettuces, there are 2 kinds of parsley, dill, lemon balm, chives, sage and lemon thyme. For flowers, I have the bidens I posted about last week, violets and alyssum. Still to come are marigolds, tomatoes and pole beans.
Still, I do not foodscape nearly to the extent–or with the same gorgeous results–as Brie Arthur, author of The Foodscape Revolution: Finding a Better Way to Make Space for Food and Beauty in Your Garden. When I tell you that the book is published by St. Lynn’s Press, you will know that it’s going to have that same comprehensive blend of chapters that not only tell the reader why a foodscape garden is a good idea, but also how to grow all sorts of vegetables (along with a chart for “hardscape” plants–perennials, trees and shrubs–for different regions of the country in case you are creating the garden from scratch and not just tucking edibles in among existing ornamentals).
Of course there are some of the author’s favorite recipes, and methods of preserving your harvest once your plants are ready. One of the sections I found most helpful, particularly if someone is a newer gardener, is the pages about how to know when to harvest your vegetables.
Arthur shows some projects she has planted that are absolutely lovely as well. And she even has a section on edibles in containers, if perhaps you are gardening on a balcony or don’t have a bit of land for planting.
What was most noticeable to me is how different her edibles are from mine. While I will occasionally grow corn, if I am going to take up that much space in my garden, I usually devote it to non-edibles for wildlife. I suppose I could split the difference and grow something like Aronia, for example.
She also doesn’t talk a lot about herbs, although she does grow them. Her containers have them and her plantings feature them and she does mention basil a few times. For me, herbs are probably 50% of what I grow, and I always grow more than what I need so that some can flower for the pollinators.
I don’t find this a weakness in the book; I just find it interesting. As I always say, if we all liked the same thing, we would have a very boring world!
As usual, St. Lynn’s kindly provided this review copy to me but all opinions expressed here are mine alone.