Before: This architectural Tudor was not living up to it's potential!
After: Edible front yard knot garden, neat and delicious!
I think more people would trade in their front yard lawn for a beautiful and bountiful edible garden if the edible garden were neat looking.
No one wants to come home to a living "misto salad" where wayward zucchini vines tangle and topple over tomato plants!
A "knot garden" design is a great way to add structure to an edible garden and keep plants in their place.
Knot gardens were popular in Victorian times where hedges were clipped in interesting shapes to create artistic and intricate patterned garden beds.
Take a look at what Michael Glassman and I designed for homeowner, Susan Yackley who longed to replace her lawn with a gourmet garden!
The first step was to remove lawn, shape the garden beds and create a gravel walkway and sitting area.
We annexed the parkway to carry the knot garden design to the curb.
We edged with pavers to punctuate the straight lines of the herb hedges and filled the beds with other culinary plants.
The pavers will serve as a visual guide for keeping the hedges in their place.
The parkway plants can be shared with neighbors.
We planted two espaliered apple trees and constructed this lightweight fence to support them.
This created a "living screen" that marks the boundary between Susan and her neighbors house.
The knot garden is taking shape.
We installed drip irrigation and used risers to elevate the spray nozzles.
We added a bench to the gravel sitting area.
Notice how the pattern on the bench brings out the diamond paned windows!
We added some design details and focal points.
An entry arbor planted with pink jasmine and Hardenbergia
A matching pair of "living salad bowls" flank the arched entry and serve as focal points in the garden beds.
The edible knot garden is complete!
The homeowner was very emotional when she saw the completed work.
She worked along side us for two days and earned the right to enjoy the "fruits of her labor."
Curious how it all ended up?
Watch this short video clip of the reveal.
Here is a list of some of the edibles Susan gets to enjoy and you can see photos of all the plants on my web site.
|Eugenia myrtifolia (three-tier topiary)||White flowers, edible "cherries"|
|Apple "Beverly Hills" for espalier||Small fruit, early ripening date|
|Knot Garden Hedges|
|Rosmarinus officianales "Tuscan Blue"||Use for cooking, medicinal tea to increase energy and improve memory|
|Myrtus compacta variegata||Evergreen dwarf form. Fragrant for flower arrangement|
|Teucrium chamaedrys||Attracts bees for pollinating your garden, lavender/pink flowers. Fragrant|
|Leptospermum scoparium "Gaiety Girl" (small accent trees)||Evergreen with flowers, early New Z
ealand settlers soaked leaves to make tea substitute.
|Leptospermum scoparium (shrub form)|
|Lavandula stoechas "Quasti"||Fragrant ,dark purple flowers, attracts butterflies.|
|Lavandula multifida||Fragrant, grey-green foliage, deep blue flowers. Dry for potpourri, flavor water.|
|Salvia greggii "Lipstick"||Aromatic folliage, attracts hummingbirds, use in cooking and sore throat gargle.|
|Armeria maritima "Cottontail" white||Profuse white blooms extends all year in mild climates.|
|Chamomille nobile||Essential oil for relaxing. Tea made from dried flowers|
|Thymus (Creeping Elfin Thyme)||Used for seasoning, pot pourri|
|Mentha r. (Corsican Mint)||Can be invasive. Use as aromatic filler between stepping stones|
|Strawberry "Sequoia"||Large dark red fruit, sweet tasting, long fruiting season, good in most zones|
|Jasminum polyanthum (Pink Jasmine)||Fragrant, evergreen, pink flowers late winter/early spring|
|Hardenbergia (Lilac vine)||Evergreen, lilac blooms late winter/early spring. Nice alternative to wisteria|
|Garden Police "Urn Salad Bowl" Collection|
|White flowering cabbage||Foliage is edible raw or cooked|
|Mustard "Osaka purple"|
|Swiss Chard "Brite Lites"|
|Nastursium "Tip Top Alaska"||Flowers, edible add to salad|
|Knot Garden Herbs|
|Italian Basil||Culinary herb, fresh or dry|
|Italian Parsley||Culinary herb, in cold areas, plant in spring after last frost|
|Greek Oregano||Culinary herb, use as ground cover, hanging baskets|
If you want to read a very detailed account of this edible front yard makeover, read this blog post!