If you’d like to learn to grow food alongside your flowers in your garden, all-in-one-garden just might be the book for you.
My own all-in-one-garden
I’ve always like variety in the garden. I like to tuck any little plant into every corner of the yard. For example, in order to put a little nitrogen into my soil, I decided to plant some bush Lima beans in our new herb garden in the front yard. Lima bean grow really fast and I hoped they’d provide some quick green in our new, and rather sparse, garden.
I decided which legume to use by which variety I still had stuck in my apron pocket after a day of planting the veggie beds. I’ve never been a fan of dithering. (It took me all of ten minutes to pick out my wedding bands.)
Both my neighbors thought it was funny – just another crazy Tessa thing. (Have I mentioned that I have awesome neighbors?!) I thought it was funny that early this spring my one neighbor stopped by to ask which variety of Lima bean I grew so that she could grow some, too. My husband said my “missionary work” of planting food everywhere we can was bearing fruit in the neighborhood.
To keep track of all your ideas for food integration into the garden, you might need The Garden Notebook below:
The truth is, I’m happy for everyone to see that I love planting edibles with herbs. And ornamental plants with annuals, corn, sunflowers with…you get the idea. Some might call that out of the box garden design but I ask, “What box? Who said there was a box when it comes to gardening?!” Gardening style is as individual as clothing style and I believe in being eclectic, bold, beautiful and on the slightly messy side. But that’s me.
You’re style might be totally different and I’m glad – variety is truly the spice of life! Either way, edibles and ornamentals can and should be comfortable hanging out with each other. There’s no place in my yard for elitist annuals with their frilly noses stuck up in the air. Nor do I tolerate to many bossy mints, muscling their perennial selves all over the yard. I like everyone to get along nicely with each other in the garden. With a large variety of plants the garden can provide pollinator forage, food and medicine for my family and something lovely to look at all year round.
And another great book you might want to check out, read this.
Book Review all-in-one-garden
Books like all-in-one-garden (what’s with the trend of lower case letters?!), by Graham Rice make me happy to read! I’m glad to be seeing more and more titles like this one. The tag line for the book is “Grow vegetables, fruit, herbs and flowers in the same space”. Oorah. The more food we can grow alongside our flowers, the better, I say.
Mr. Rice has design ideas for borders, small gardens, large gardens, deck gardens, seasonal gardens and raised beds. Each section has his top plant picks for whatever gardening situation he’s describing. For example, his top picks for autumn flower and foliage partners for food plants range from asters to violas.
There’s the requisite cultural information for each plant and plant combination. As well as special concerns of care and feeding. The last half of the book details many plants and their needs.
The graphics are very nice, too, which makes for a nice reading experience. Rice’s suggested designs are fun and varied. Every taste should find something they like.
No recipes in all-in-one-garden, but it does have a lot of information of edible plants, of course. As well as a section on herbs and edible flowers. He even mentions Tulbaghia, which I’ve never seen in a regular ol’ garden book before!
Overall, all-in-one-garden is a fun read to inspire you and me to garden with boldness and confidence! Grow what you want, change it up, make it a reflection of your style. And remember, just because they’re in the front yard (unless your CCRs or HOA prevent it), doesn’t mean your plants can’t be beautiful AND useful!
For tips on learning how to garden and homestead in an HOA, be sure to check out that section in our book, The Do It Yourself Homestead. Click below to learn more: