If you have ever grown a vegetable garden in your background, then you have probably realized that it can get down right ugly, possibly even an eye sore. Normally vegetable gardens are for practical use and not used so much for aesthetics. Well, I say you can buck the trend. Just because it is a vegetable garden doesn’t mean it can’t be as gorgeous as it is functional.
Most vegetable gardeners tend to use their artistic skills for flower beds and general landscaping around the home. Why couldn’t a vegetable gardener use that same creativity in their vegetable garden? No one has said that you can’t add form and function.
I find that beautifying my vegetable garden is almost mandatory, since most of my backyard is taken up by growing my favorite vegetables. Here are some tips on how you can make your vegetable garden as beautiful as it is productive.
Take Time for Proper Vegetable Garden Planning
By taking the time to plan out your vegetable garden you can organize the garden space. Figure out how much garden space you have, where everything will be planted, and so on. Plant tall or vining plants towards the back of the garden. Plant herbs along the front or sides of the garden to add appeal and aroma to the garden. Use creative ways to use your garden space. If you are interested in more information about garden planning, see my Create a Garden Plan post.
Use Trellises and Supports for Vining Plants
If you let cucumbers, some beans, pumpkins, watermelons, etc. run all over creation then it will make the garden look cluttered (unless you have a lot of garden space). Using trellises or other supports helps keep these plants well organized. Not to mention it helps to keep the plants healthier. My sister lets her pickling cucumbers run along a chain link fence that sits behind her garden. It is a two-prong attack – the cucumbers stay off the ground and it makes the gaudy chain link fence not such an eye sore.
Use Stepping Stones On Any Paths To and Around Your Vegetable Garden
I was beginning to wear out the grass where I walked around the garden. One day, I was at a landscaping center and noticed they had their flat stepping stones on sale, so I bought about twenty of them. I put them about sixteen inches apart on the “path” I was making. It made a huge improvement in the look of the area and made getting to the garden a joy.
You can use whatever type of stepping stone you like. You can buy the fancy stepping stones or just use pieces of slate. I would not use something that is too drastic because you may have to pull them back up when it is time to till the garden the next season.
Plant Inexpensive Flowers Around Your Vegetable Garden
Every year I visit my local Lowe’s or Home Depot and pick up a few flats of marigolds and petunias, or whatever else they may have that’s relatively inexpensive. I use these flowers to spruce up the borders of my vegetable garden. Marigolds are even more useful as they are a deterrent for some insect pests. I love something that has doubles effects!
Before purchasing any flowers that you may plant near vegetables, please check to make sure they are compatible with the vegetables. You want to make your garden look nice, but the main point of the vegetable garden is to grow vegetables. We don’t want to sacrifice our beloved veggies for appearance.
Mulch Your Vegetable Garden
Use mulch to give your garden bed a little more character. Using some good mulch in your garden bed is much more appealing than bare soil. In addition, the mulch is very good for retaining moisture and heat in the soil. Another double whammy!
Add Ornaments To Your Vegetable Garden
No, I’m not talking about the little things you stick on Christmas trees. I’m talking about yard ornaments. Place a nice old fashioned sun dial or bird bath in the center of the garden. I saw a garden a while back with a nice looking scarecrow in it. It added a nice touch to the garden.
Sometimes you can visit garden centers or pottery places and find some very nice items to add visual interest to the vegetable garden.
Add a Sitting Spot Near Your Vegetable Garden
Place a bench, chair, stool, or hammock near your garden so that you have a comfortable spot to gaze at the magnificent spectacle you have grown.
It is absolute paradise to kick back in a comfortable spot, with a cold glass of ice tea, on a summer’s evening and partake in the accomplishments of your hard work in the garden.
There are unlimited possibilities for creating a vegetable garden, not only well-producing, but also a beautiful part of your backyard. With some hard work, a little planning, and creativity you can make your vegetable garden the envy of the neighborhood. In most cases all of these beatification methods can be do-it-yourself, so they are very cheap for the budget-minded vegetable gardener.