Edible landscaping, or foodscaping, is the practice of incorporating both edible and ornamental design when planting your property.
Implementing edible landscaping will maximize your food production in your space while maintaining the curb appeal. Most neighbors don't want to go home to look at farm rows on their neighbors front lawn, so sterile monoculture turf has somehow become the standard for landscape design.
Years ago in high society in the UK, having excess land and just putting grass, or what became known as lawn, was seen as a status symbol to show they didn't need to use their property to grow food like their less wealthy neighbors. This may seem outlandish, but this has been passed in many cultures today. These typically ornamental and non native plants are put next to the most useless and needy crop we grow in the U.S. today, grass! Almost 50,000 miles are devoted to growing grass in the states today.
That is more than land used to grow corn, wheat, or soy. It is estimated that Americans spend $30 billion on lawn care every year!
Now imagine what we could grow for that much money. By comparison, the money spent maintaining an edible landscape would pale in comparison. Many edible landscape designs try to use plants adapted to the area where they are being grown, or solely native plants altogether. Native plants tend to use less water and resources because they are acclimated to grow in these areas for much longer than we have been here. They play a special role in their local ecosystem. They attract native animals and beneficial pollinators and you are helping to restore a native habitat while obtaining numerous benefits of your own at the same time. It is quite practical to include these plants since they are usually a lower cost and have multiple benefits.
We live in an urban environment, so people are more conscious of not only having a beautiful landscape, but having a landscape that they can interact with. In many ways, it’s similar to the local food movement which has been growing in this past decade.
While there is an upfront cost for the garden, which varies depending on size and type of plants involved, most people won’t need to replant their edibles every year. Ultimately you save money, time, and the planet at the same time. So ask yourself, what would it look like to have a farmer’s market in your own backyard?
To get ideas on how to implement edible landscaping on your property, contact Zane Redman for a free virtual consultation: