Plant in blocks of color
The idea of bringing edible and ornamental gardening together certainly isn’t a new concept. The French have been doing it in their potagers (vegetable gardens) for centuries, providing beauty and bounty in the form of flowers, vegetables, fruits, and herbs that enrich their gardens and tables throughout the seasons. One of the easiest ways to dazzle the eye in this setting is to throw flowering ornamentals into the mix and play with color.
When choosing a mix of plants, I go for options that offer a wide range of colors and textures. I love to cover the ground with colorful edibles that are also ornamental, like blue-green cabbage, purple basil, and golden sage. Planting organization is the most practical way to approach edibles, so I plant these colorful selections in blocks to create a beautiful, quiltlike tapestry.
Instead of pretty plants in one bed and edibles in another, mix them together for eye-catching plantings.
Photo/Illustration: David Cavagnaro