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Home > Feature Articles > Landscaping

Edible Landscaping for Beauty and Function

Edible landscaping brings multi-purpose to green spaces. Food can be for humans or wildlife...

Find green business solutions
carrot organic food The National Gardening Association offers a newsletter for food gardening enthusiasts, but the applications sometimes apply to commercial landscaping. After all, the benefits of greenscaping know no commercial/residential borders!

By planning "Multi-function" into your landscaping, you can serve the aesthetic and cooling needs of the commercial landdacape at the same time that other needs of our community are served. Plants can be good for wildlife habitat, or herbs for the company snack bar/cafeterial, or even greens for salads. Employees might even like to take home a sack of tomatoes or lemons occasionally to spice up their famly dinners.

Arable land is a very precious commodity in urban areas and if your company has unpolluted land that would serve as quality gardening crops, consider the mixed blessing (in the best sense of the term) of mixed aesthetic and edible landscaping.

Some edible landscaping plants include:

  • Kale: this old fashioned vegetable is enjoying a revival because it is loaded with nutrients, is easy to grow, and provides a beautiful fountain of gray green foliage. Kale is loaded with calcium, iron and vitamins.
  • American cranberry bush features bright red berries in later summer, which people and birds love to eat.
  • Rose hips are produced in abundance on rosa rugosa plants. This shrub makes a great barrier plant and can tolerate growing near salt water.
Edible plants can be shrubs for foundation plantings or as hedges.

Rosemary can be grown as a natural fence with a second purpose.

If you need a hedge formidable enought to keep wildlife and humans out of an area, some edible shrubs have thorns that thwart trespassers. Barrier shrubs that also offer edible benefits include brambles, gooseberry, natal plum and Rugosa rose.

For more ideas, check our SOURCE: Edible Landscaping offers an online Edible Landscaping Primer

  • Planning Your Landscape 101
  • Growing Berry Shrubs
  • Edible Trees
  • Growing Edible Flowers in Your Garden
  • Vegetable Garden Design
  • Edible Resource Guide
  • Soil Common Sense
  • Herb Gardening Basics 101

And of course...use IPM to Eliminate Pesticides!

Edible landscaping is a great excuse to replace pesticides and fertilizers with organic approaches such as composting, mulching and integrated pest management! Each step toward natural systems leads us to a better world in which to thrive!

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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