Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Growing Our Own Food

Current news items about the effect of climate change on food availability, the need to produce greater quantities of crops nearer to home, and the end of the “cheap food” era must surely mean an increase in many people wanting productive areas as part of an overall garden design. The integration of veggie patches with ornamental gardens (if we want to be posh about it, “potagers”) is nothing new, and can be an attractive idea – though some people are put off by thinking it’s a lot of work. I’ve done projects in the past using raised beds, which can reduce the work and overcome poor soil conditions, linked to the ornamental garden by, for example, a pergola walkway. I recently visited a company called Living Leaves, who have developed a complete system for producing veg, herb & salad crops – including neat raised beds, planting plans for all-year-round crops, plants delivered to your door at just the right time, plus monthly email guides. Integrating a system like this within an overall design can give a novice client confidence that they can grow wholesome, fresh food themselves – without it being too much work, and at less cost than buying from a supermarket.

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