Veg and Flower Bed

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RosieMay

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Veg and Flower Bed
« on: January 15, 2011, 18:24 »
I had a very overgrown flower border which I dug out, saved some plants in pots and dug over.  It's laid bare all winter and now I quite like the idea of growing a mixture of veg, herbs and flowers altogether.  I'm reading Alys Fowlers Edible Garden book at the moment and getting some ideas.  Just wondering if any of you do this and have any advice or comments on doing so?  Does it work?  Is it worth a try in view of the fact we are seriously watching the at the moment and it would be much cheaper to do this growing veg from seed rather than re-filling the bed with expensive perrenials!

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Trillium

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2011, 18:39 »
Alys' idea is very similar to Geoff Hamilton's Ornamental Kitchen Garden idea (google for more info). And yes, it does work very well. Some folk just don't want either or, and prefer to mix flowers and veg. Some fear passers by will steal veg from a front garden so hiding among flowers helps. These gardens can be any size and include whatever you want or can fit in. Trellised veg are very popular in limited spaces.

The key to edible gardens is that you're more intensively planting them, and as one crop comes out, you need to scratch in more compost, blood, fish & bonemeal before planting the next veg. Dinosaur kale, aka Tuscan kale, is very tasty as well as ornamental so there are a lot of positives for edible gardens. l

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purplebean

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #2 on: January 15, 2011, 21:16 »
This is one of my beds from a couple of years ago, as well as the flowers it has kale, courgette, strawberries, swede, celeriac and a few other things


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compostqueen

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #3 on: January 15, 2011, 21:23 »
I like to see some flowers in with my veg be it at home or on the allotment.  Red cabbages look gorgeous with calendula and frilly red kales look at home in any bedding scheme

A good book on the subject, available from the library, is Joy Larkcom's Creative Vegetable Gardening  :)

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arugula

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2011, 10:04 »
I have a bed which is permanent home to some of my perennial herbs such as thyme and sage. In summer it is filled out with annual herbs, colourful flowers such as Cosmos and salads.

It looks really cheerful. :)
"They say a snow year's a good year" -- Rutherford.

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Thrift

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2011, 10:11 »
Lovely pic purplebean. I think I'll try that!

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RosieMay

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2011, 11:15 »
Definitely going to try this.  Your garden looks lovely PurpleBean.  Thanks for the photos.  Guess the trick is to grow veg that will be in situ for a while, such as courgettes, strawberries, cabbages rather than lots of things you will pull up and have to keep replacing. 

Thanks  :)

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Jono

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    • Real Men Sow - a cheery allotment blog.
Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2011, 13:22 »
I love the colour of that kale. What variety is it?

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tallulah

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2011, 14:46 »
This is one of my beds from a couple of years ago, as well as the flowers it has kale, courgette, strawberries, swede, celeriac and a few other things



That look superb!  Are the flowers cosmos, or rock rose? Or neither?!

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Trillium

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2011, 15:05 »
I'm guessing Redbor Scotch kale.

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Yorkie

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2011, 17:56 »
And the flowers look like cosmos to me

An inspiring piccie, PB :D
I try to take one day at a time, but sometimes several days all attack me at once...

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purplebean

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2011, 21:26 »
The flowers are cosmos, I grew them from seed and they just kept on growing and flowering.

The kale came from a packet that said Calabrese and had a picture of calabrese but the inner foil pack said Redbor, so when I sowed I thought I would prpbably get kale and I did. It grew right though the winter and was delicious.

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compostqueen

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2011, 22:25 »
The Redbor kale looks lovely with Musselburgh leeks, which take on a lilac tinge as they mature and they look a picture in the evening sunshine. 

I love to grow like this on my plot let alone in the garden  :)

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tallulah

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #13 on: January 17, 2011, 23:07 »
I agree compostqueen - its so beautiful to look at, the mix of veg and flowers.  In fact, PB, this photo is inspiring me to re-organise the rockery - I love the look of the rock anyway, with things like rock rose etc - but maybe I'll mix the planting more.  Also, my garden isn't huge, and I let my allotment go last year, so I'm limited as to where I can put my veg.

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RosieMay

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Re: Veg and Flower Bed
« Reply #14 on: January 18, 2011, 14:09 »
I was surprised when I was out looking at Veg seed this morning, how many packets actually say 'looks good in the veg garden or the flower border'  :)  Think this will inspire me to grow some different things this year, like purple beans.



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