Fresh Start

Transform small spaces into a garden brimming with vegetables and herbs

Written by Diane Morey S'ltton

Tropical Gardens Tiny Spaces

mall on space doesn't have to mean sparse on trcsh, tasty vegetables and herbs. With some inventive gardening, even a skimpy site can yield an abundant harvest. Start by planting herbs and vegetables in containers. Grow salad greens in window boxes. Save soil space by growing sprawling varieties on teepees and trellises. Give trailers a placc to flourish on balcony railings.

Intensify the harvest by building soil-enriched raised beds. Intcrplant fast growers with slowpokes. Integrate vegetables into borders: the showier, the better. Select patio, pixie, tiny, baby or dwarf varieties.

Finding space for your favorite veggies is easy. Best of all, small gardens take less time to weed, water and fertilize than large gardens, leaving more rime to relish the harvest.

Backyard Bounty

OPPOSITE: Compost-enriched soil in sunny, raised beds sustains a garden-fest of vegetables. Here, 'Precovllle Petit Pols' pea's diminutive vines hobnob with 'Rouge d'Etampes Cinderella' pumpkin's sprawling heirloom stems and 'Dlabio' Brussels sprout's 2-foot-tall, sprout-filled stalks. 'Bintje' Dutch potato buries Its golden spuds in the garden's rich loam. Quick-growing 'De Milan Rouge1 turnip and 'Green Zebra1 tomatoes number among the garden's other selections.

Merveille Quatre Saisons Images

Salad Bowl ABOVE: Willow fencing frames a salad mix consisting of red-blushed Indigo' radicchio, petite 'Très Fine Maraîchère Frisée1 endive, 'Cardinale' loose-leaf lettuce and 'Merveille des Quatre Saisons,' an easy-to-grow butterhead lettuce variety. 'Precoville Petit Pois' pea's delicate vines spill from the raised bed. In small sites, plant lettuce, parsley, radish or other frilly, low-growing salad fixings in a pot or alongside a sidewalk.

Recipe Ready LEFT 'Ronde de Nice,1 a French heirloom zucchini squash, yields round fruits on bush-type plants. Harvest the bright green bails as babies or pick them for slicing or stuffing at their 4-inch-diameter maturity. The large yellow blooms attract bees and butterflies. Conserve space in small gardens by selecting bush-type squash instead of trailing varieties.

season's bounty

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Herbal Welcome r IGH Have flavor-filled herbs at your fingertips by planting them near the door. Here, mint, rosemary and marjoram thrive in a narrow space between a house and walkway. Johnny-jump-up's and nasturtium's colorful blooms are showy and edible.

Movable Feast ABOVE: Growing veggies and herbs in containers multiplies garden space. Arrange the pots along a wall, cluster them on a terrace or display them on sunny steps. This container garden boasts tomato, banana pepper, thyme, sage, bastl, rosemary, nasturtium and Johnny-jump-up. Select containers with good drainage.

Space Saver BELOW: Gain garden space with window boxes. Plant directly in a soil-filled box or use the receptacle to showcase herb-filled containers. Here, purple sage (.Salvia officinalis 'Purpurascens') flanks golden sage (S.o. 'Aurea'). Other savory container herbs include thyme, oregano and mint.

Start Fresh Flowering PlantArrange And Space Tomatoes Garden

Keeping Plants Healthy

Sustain vegetables and herbs by meeting their needs for sun, water and nutrients.

  • Select a sunny site. Most veggies need 6 hours or more of sun each day.
  • Enrich soil with composted organic matter. Feed container-grown plants with liquid fertilizer,
  • Regular deep watering enables veggies to bloom and produce, Conserve water by using soaker hoses or drip irrigation
  • Avoid rootbound plants by selecting containers large enough to accommodate root development.
  • Eliminate competition by keeping veggie gardens and containers free of weeds
  • Routinely remove any damaging insects from plants to keep them healthy.

Side Yard Sensation

Containers, latticework and raised beds support vegetables, herbs, strawberries, fruit trees and flowers to transform this narrow passageway into a beautiful and bountiful garden.

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Herbal Essence

Infuse your hand-picked dishes with flavor from your garden

Written by Shelley Woison

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