Wednesday, June 2, 2010

tomato cages are ugly

Stainless steel tomato spirals used in the
2009 edible landscape
Does anyone out there agree? I can think of few things that detract from the beauty of a garden more than tomato cages. And it really doesn't help much to buy ones that are painted green. Come on, you can't fool me with green paint. Last year I tried some nifty stainless steel tomato spirals, which I'll admit were very cool. But they only really worked for small-fruited and thin-stemmed varieties. Bulkier varieties just took the slender spirals down with them and required additional staking later in the season. This year I am determined to devise a sturdy, functional, and fabulous looking method of supporting tomatoes in the Edible Landscape. I'm not looking to buy the latest gadget. Rather, I want to construct something of natural materials or use found objects. So, faithful readers, I need your help. Post a comment with your suggestions, or if you have photos send them by email and I'll post them (since I can't figure out a way for you to post them right here). Just click on my profile pic to find my email address.

Please act fast and send your ideas, the tomatoes are growing quickly!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

edible landscape taking shape

View down the length of the
2010 edible landscape
The 2010 season is off to a good start. With the early warmth we've had, all the plants are doing well! But first, a look around the new edible landscape. This year's area is long and narrow with a windy path on the front edge. I know I promised small scale, but the space just kept growing as I worked on it. However, the space is divided up by stone paths, a patio, and rock walls, so walking through the garden you'll get a great sense of what you could do if you only had one of these little areas to work with. We also have a little shade in the edible landscape this year! Yes, I consider that a good thing because it more accurately resembles a real home landscape. Edible plants generally prefer lots of sun, but there are some great options for edibles in partial shade, and I've got those under a lovely ginkgo tree that shades the garden till about noon (I'd prefer if it shaded them in the afternoon, but we work with what we have). In this area you'll find a few different lettuces, chard, pak choy...are you sensing a theme here? Leafy greens...partial shade...ah hah!

Here's a look at this year's edible landscape just as it's getting started. The stone paths are new as is the patio. Soon you'll see photos of the completed patio with containers filled with beautiful and delicious edibles. Stop by soon!
One of the sunniest spots in the edible landscape.

A view of the Honeycrisp tree, bean/cuke trellises
and the ginkgo tree.