A Feast for the Eyes

Traditionally, when planning a vegetable garden, the focus has been primarily on function with aesthetics as an afterthought – a productive harvest has usually been more important than any visual appeal. This year, why not try a new approach? Thoughtfully combine beauty and performance to create an edible garden that will explode with a variety of color and an abundance of produce. It can truly be a feast for the eyes as well as the table!

Planning a Beautiful Vegetable Garden

Color, texture and form are characteristics we keep in mind when combining plants in the flower garden. We plan flowerbeds so that plants enhance each other, repeating colors and shapes for continuity and flow. We add a variety of texture and form for diversity and interest. Vegetables, herbs and fruits can be just as vibrant, exciting, diverse and easy to combine as annual and perennial flowering plants are.

To begin, provide structure. Placing a picket fence around your garden offers instant structure and visually sets it apart from the rest of the landscape. If you plan on planting along the outside of the perimeter, you will create the allure of a garden within a garden, with a hint of secret places. Place a straight pathway through the center, starting at the entrance. Divide the larger garden into smaller square planting beds using pathways to separate the beds. This will enhance the structure of, and provide easy access to, the garden beds as well as lead your eye through the garden. If desired, you can also used raised beds for this formal structure.

Next, focus on plant selection. Begin with a plant plan or layout. Initially, base your selections on what is pleasing to your individual tastes. Consider unusual varieties of vegetables and herbs that come in unique colors. Repeat colors, both horizontally and vertically, to add depth and dimension to the garden. Don’t forget to add brightly flowering annuals such as zinnias and marigolds to mingle amongst the edibles. Another consideration is edible flowers like nasturtium and calendula. Contrast colors for a striking, eye-catching effect. Keep in mind, also, texture and form. Bold textures add drama and are often combined with fine-foliaged plants for a softening contrast. Short, stout plants anchor the garden bed while tall, willowy plants raise the eye and lead you farther down the garden path. Take all these characteristics into account when planning and place plants in geometric patterns to create a quilt-like garden tapestry.

Finally, your spring edible garden will emerge invoking a feeling of calm, displaying a variety of cool greens, purples and blues found in peas, lettuce, cabbage and broccoli. Shortly after, the summer edible garden will be completely transformed at harvest time with an explosion of vibrant shades of red, purple, orange and yellow. With so many stunning options to combine, you can truly create a feast for the eyes that will be beautiful in every season!

Gussy Up the Veggie Garden

A vegetable garden is the ultimate in practical landscaping, and a thriving veggie patch can not only be a bountiful supplement to a grocery budget, but also an enjoyable hobby and great exercise as you sow seeds, nurture plants and take up your delicious harvest. One thing a vegetable garden does not need to be, however, is drab, and there are many fun ways to gussy up the veggie garden to show off your personal flair and gardening charisma.

Why Beautify a Vegetable Patch?

As more gardeners expand their cultivated plots into side yards and even front yards, keeping a vegetable garden attractive is essential. Not only can a lovely vegetable garden be attractive to the neighborhood, but it increases curb appeal for your home, raises awareness about the beauty of vegetables and allows you to take just as much pride in your garden’s appearance as you do in your harvest. Adding more personality to your vegetable garden is also a fun way to discover more gardening techniques and show off your more colorful side.

Fun Ways to Gussy Up the Veggie Garden

There are many different ways you can give your garden a more colorful personality, and we have everything you need to do so. While you may not want to use every technique in your garden depending on the veggies you grow and the space you have available, trying just one or two fun tactics can give your garden a great makeover.

  • Liven Up the Lines
    Instead of planting vegetables in straight rows, embrace the twists, turns and curves of your landscape with a curvy garden. You can create a pattern of colors and shapes, or use different edging options to delineate the sections of your garden in more visible ways.
  • Pretty Up Your Paths
    You don’t have to use plain dirt paths in your garden when there are colorful mulches, unique stepping stones and other options to create more interesting pathways. Try river rocks, multi-colored gravel, crushed shells, bricks or other options to define paths more beautifully.
  • Build a Beautiful Border
    Define your garden’s edge with a beautiful border. Decorative fences can be quaint, or you can plant flowers all around the garden for extra color. Use deer- and rabbit-resistant flowers such as poppies, marigolds, zinnia and verbena to help protect your garden at the same time.
  • Create Bursts of Color
    Add more color to your garden with whimsical touches such as colorful tomato cages or painted support stakes. You can also add a brilliant gazing ball, a fun seasonal decorative flag or other colorful accents to add instant vibrancy to your veggie garden.
  • Add an Amazing Arbor
    An arbor or pergola can be an amazing architectural accent in your garden. This structure can be functional as well when it provides a bit of protection for shade-loving veggies or includes a bench with hidden storage for your favorite garden tools, hoses or other equipment.
  • Verticalize Your Veggies
    Go up, up, up with your veggie garden space when you embrace vertical gardening. You can hang baskets from an arbor, trellis or poles, or create a green wall or other vertical gardening space that climbing plants will love, and you’ll see your harvest multiply.
  • Secret Spaces to Make You Smile
    Your vegetable garden doesn’t need to be nothing but growing space, and you can add a whimsical garden gnome, fairy garden setup or other secret space to the garden. You might even include a small bench or meditation fountain for extra enjoyment.
  • Welcome Beneficial Wildlife
    Bring helpful visitors to your veggie garden when you add a bee house, butterfly feeder, hummingbird feeder or bird bath to the garden. These helpful pollinators will appreciate the assistance and will repay your generosity as they increase the yield of all your veggies.
  • Select Stunning Seedlings
    The seedlings you add to your veggie patch can go a long way toward beautification when you choose plants with colorful foliage or unique produce. This also gives you a chance to experiment with new plants, and you might discover a new favorite vegetable along the way.
  • Fill In With Flowers
    Quickly add color and texture to your vegetable garden when you fill in short rows and corners with extra flowers. This is a great way to expand your garden and avoid thin or bare patches that detract from your garden’s beauty.
  • Make Magnificent Markers
    Marking plant rows and types keeps your garden organized, and you can do it with flair when you choose colorful or whimsical plant markers. Painted rocks, fun signs, cheerful flags and other options can denote your plants while adding beauty to your garden.
  • Class It Up With Containers
    A bright pot or planter box can be an attractive addition to your veggie patch, and will add extra color as well. This is a great way to add herbs, mints, berries or other fun plants to your garden. Elevate smaller pots with plant stands or pot feet to give more dimension to the garden.

With so many fun options to gussy up your veggie garden, your gardening patch can be just as beautiful as any carefully cultivated flowerbed or meticulously groomed lawn – and more delicious!

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