thread: (Partly) edible front yard

  1. #1
    BellyBelly Member

    Jan 2010

    (Partly) edible front yard

    I hate my front yard. I want to re-do it, but I'm not sure what to put in. I want something interesting, colour, different heights, needs to be good in full-sun and without huge amounts of attention (I can spare a little time, but not hours a week).

    My idea is to include a few edible things, but I don't want it to look like a veggie or herb patch. I'm thinking maybe some herbs as ground covers? Does anyone have any other ideas on how to incorporate edible plants in the front yard? Our back yard is tiny (and established in a way I actually like) so there is not much space for them out there.

    Also, if you have ideas for other plants for a front yard please let me know. If it helps, I'm in Adelaide.

  2. #2
    BellyBelly Member

    Mar 2006

    My parents had a screen of snow peas at one place we lived. Worked well.

  3. #3
    BellyBelly Life Subscriber

    Jun 2008
    In snuggle land

    You could plant lavender and rosemary at the back, add some thyme and oregano at the front as ground cover and plant medium sized herbs in the middle (like coriander, nasturtiums, sage). Thyme flowers come in a few different colours. I like adding alyssum as a ground cover. It spreads, self-seeds and smells like honey. It also attracts bees.

    I've planted veggies in the front as well. I like planting things in spirals. If you google spiral herb gardens, that can give you some ideas. Other plants that like sun include geraniums. They can take over, but respond well to pruning. Salvias do well too.

    in my front garden, I have roses, daisies, lavender, alyssum, chives, gazanias and various bulbs.
    i've also planted 4 apple trees on an espalier frame, and planted things like cabbage, but the veggies aren't doing very well. There are also salvias, geraniums, rosemary and garlic. Lettuce can look good as well as being edible. The geranium variety is supposed to keep mozzies away.

    just be aware that some herbs can take over. Rosemary can get quite woody. Basil and mint can go nuts. Sometimes they are better in pots.

    marigolds are supposed to attract snails and slugs and keep them away from the other plants. I still use bait of different kinds though.

  4. #4
    BellyBelly Member

    Feb 2006
    NSW Central Coast

    How about some hardy herbs like rosemary, thyme, mint, lavender.
    Some trees like lemons, olives or limes.
    You can eat flowers like pansy, certain roses, calendula, camomile, marigold, chrysanthemum.

  5. #5
    BellyBelly Member

    Nov 2008
    Perth, WA

    I second the rosemary. Lavender could work too. Nasturtium. What about some leafy greens like kale or rainbow chard as a border?

    Fruit trees? A passion fruit vine on a trellis/fence/arbour?

    I like the idea of pots for veges, as you can move them, change them and the pot itself can be a feature. Hanging baskets look cool too, or vertical planting on a wall or fence. We had an old rusty wheelbarrow that we planted parsley, chives, oregano and thyme in. Cherry tomatoes are easy, as is lettuce (I like the pick and go stuff). Ground covers like zucchini, melons, cue etc often look a bit messy. Beans and snow peas are easy grow too. Try Gardening Australia for ideas for which veges to plant for your area. Just remember that they'll need regular watering!

    Take a walk around your neighbourhood to see what others are growing that looks like its doing well. If you do not know the name, take a photo or sample to your nursery and they'll be happy to id it for you. I like really easy care stuff, like agapanthus, lyriope, agave etc I also love, love, love natives! They usually need a good pruning a couple of times a year, but will attract birds and butterflies. Depends on how much work you want to do