Landscape Planning

It is almost the New Year and in spite of whatever the weather may be it is a great time to plan your landscape. 
Planning ahead can help prevent those situations where you bought a plant because you saw it and just have to have it but then don't know where to put it.  Hopefully it will survive  until you find and prepare a spot. 

Make a list of what you think you would like to grow.  Since this blog is about edible landscaping hopefully you have several edible plants on your list.  Trees, shrubs, and perennials can all be edible plants instead of just the typical barberry, potentilla, aspen, or whatever is often grown in your area.  Fruit trees, berry bushes, edible flowers, herbs, and other fruiting and edible foliage plants can be substituted.
Also, make a list of the vegetables, herbs, and other annual plants you would like to grow.  I would recommend beginning with those things you typically eat.  Later you can add what you would like to try.

Next, observe your property and note the sun and/or shade in various parts of your yard.  Consider that when trees are leafed out the sun or shade may be different.  Also, are some areas drier or more damp than others?  Are the some areas that are near downspouts so receive more water? 

Do you know what climate zone you are in?  You can find that information from your local extension service or check the Old Farmer's Almanac site.
The climate zone will help you determine whether the plants you choose will grow outdoors in your area.  If not you may still be able to grow them indoors.

Gift Ideas

Have you thought about giving (or requesting) an edible landscaping related gift for Christmas?
You may give something the receiver would love but had never thought about or didn't know where to get.
Some ideas are gift certificates, plants, seeds, or supplies from a local garden center or an internet based company - maybe one that carries or specializes in edible landscape plants.
Find a local garden center or nursery.
Some of my favorite online companies -
Logees  
Raintree
Richters

Plants that could be grown indoors now include bay tree, scented geraniums, lemongrass, lemon or other citrus fruits, pomegranate, and avocado (if you start it yourself it is not likely to fruit)

You could also give organic gardening supplies, garden tools, books, garden decor, and other garden related gifts.

Some great edible landscaping books.

Rose Scented Geranium (Pelargonium)

Roast Stuffed Pumpkin for Thanksgiving

I have not tried this recipe but it sounds interesting whether or not you are vegetarian.
A Vegetarian Thanksgiving

Cranberry Sauce recipe

Want to try a great cranberry sauce recipe this Thanksgiving or anytime?  Whether you usually like cranberry sauce or not check out this recipe.  Cranberries can be grown in your edible landscape although they will require more work if you don't have acidic soil.
Cranberry Sauce recipe from The World's Healthiest Foods
I substitute one pear for the pineapple.

Rhubarb

Rhubarb - people seem to love it or hate it.   I enjoy rhubarb crisp, pie, jam, quick bread, cookies, and other desserts.  Rhubarb can be combined with strawberries or pie cherries in pie and jam.  Rhubarb/cherry pie I think is just as good as rhubarb/strawberry pie.  I would think rhubarb fruit leather would be tasty although I have never tried it.  Be sure to never eat the leaves since they are toxic.  Harvest by pulling on a stalk instead of cutting.  Then remove the leaves and compost them.  Rhubarb can be frozen or dried for later use.

Rhubarb is not just for growing out in your garden patch.  I have seen it grown as an ornamental by the front entrance and as a border in front of shrubs in an apartment complex. I have read that if properly fertilized you will not get flower stalks.  During the short time I have tried this it has worked.  I fertilize with straight compost placed around the base of the plants.   If you do get flower stalks cut or break them off right away.

Rhubarb is usually found in the spring in nurseries or by mailorder/internet.  You may also know someone who has a plant which needs dividing so they may be happy to give you a start.  Plant your rhubarb at the depth it was in the pot or in the ground.  I grow mine in 2 x 2 Square Foot Garden boxes.  If growing straight in the ground amend your soil with compost first.  Do not harvest rhubarb the first  year.  The second year you may harvest a few stalks. From then on you may harvest quite a bit being sure to leave several leaves and stalks to keep the plant strong.
Hardiness zone 5 - 9 or 2 - 9 depending who you ask.  It grows very well in various areas of Anchorage, Alaska
Rhubarb recipes
More rhubarb recipes

Blogs

If you haven't already please check out my herb gardening blog: Herb Gardening
I also have a general gardening/landscaping blog on my website: Garden Inspire blog

Lemon Trees


I have no experience growing lemons outdoors but I have grown lemons indoors in pots for several years. One Meyer lemon I have had for over 12 years. In fact when moving from Utah to Alaska I pruned it back to fit in a Priority Mail box for my sister to hold until I arrived. I did the same when moving out of Alaska three years later. I then purchased a second Meyer lemon as well as a navel orange, pink grapefruit, and key lime. Citrus trees are attractive houseplants with lovely scented flowers and delicious fruit.

My first lemon was purchased from a local nursery. My second was purchased from a big box store. My last citrus was purchased online. So, it is not that difficult to find citrus plants. As with other plants do some research and shop around for the variety you want at a good price. Check the condition of the plant if purchasing in person. If buying by mailorder/internet purchase from a reputable company.

My lemon trees were transplanted into a larger pot right away using a good quality potting soil. In the summer I move them outdoors in a full sun to partial shade spot. It is important to help your plants adjust to a change in sunlight. If your plant is in full sun indoors it may be able to handle full sun outdoors. To be safe slowly acclimate it to the amount of sunlight it will be receiving outdoors by placing it in a bit more sun each day or moving it into the amount it will be receiving for short periods each day. After about one week or so it should be adjusted and can be placed in its summer location. Reverse the process when moving it back indoors. Also, spray with horticultural oil before moving back indoors to help prevent pest problems.
Lemon recipes 

Meyer Lemon Tree


Indoor lemon, grapefruit, lime, orange, pineapple,  plus herbs including pineapple sage, bay, and lemon verbena

Plants in My Edible Landscape - Indoors and Out

Perennials currently planted in my landscape include:
Strawberries, gooseberries, sweet cherries, bush cherries, tart cherries, peaches, apples, blueberries, elderberries, oregon grape, juniper berries, rhubarb, grapes, serviceberry, chokecherry, sand cherry, ferns, camas, rosehips, raspberries, blackberries, currants, aronia, mountain ash, hawthorne, asparagus, miners lettuce, sunchokes, saffron, Egyptian onions, high bush cranberries, blue honeysuckle, society garlic, kinnickkinnick, and several perennial herbs.

A few were existing plants but most of these were planted by me so I would have a variety ripening over a period of time. I had not grown bush cherries before and although only one foot tall I harvested a handful of tasty tart cherries. 

Indoors I grow a navel orange, pink grapefruit, key lime, lemongrass, lemon verbena, pineapple sage, pineapple, bay, scented geranium, and two Meyer lemon trees.
I look forward to adding more edibles to my yard and to my indoor environment.

In this blog I will alternate information about what I currently grow and what I am not yet growing.  I hope to teach others about edible landscape and learn more myself. 

I have gardened in Colorado, Utah, and Alaska.  Currently I garden and landscape in Bountiful, Utah so what  you can grow in  your landscape maybe somewhat different.  I think you will still benefit by reading my blog and learning about growing edibles in your yard and/or home.
What edibles have you added to your landscape?


What Is Edible Landscaping


Edible landscaping involves growing edible plants in the landscape but not necessarily in the traditional sense where they are planted in a garden spot. Fruits, vegetables, and herbs including some less familiar types can contribute to an attractive landscape and also provide sources of food. Edible plants can be used as groundcovers, shrubs, trees, perennials, annuals, vines. Some edibles can successfully be grown as houseplants. This is especially nice if you live in a climate where certain plants will not survive outdoors or if you do not have a garden spot.  

Red Currants
Purple Sage