One way to make your garden economical is to create your very own vegetable patch – and you can beautify this space with raised beds and trellis. This means you not only get to enjoy the taste and textures of delicious, organic, home grown fruit and vegetables, but your garden will look fantastic all year round.
With a rise in the popularity of TV shows such as Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s Escape to River Cottage, recent years have seen a drive towards healthy eating, with more people showing an interest in growing their own vegetables. In addition to this, recent news items have raised questions about what goes into our food, causing some people to make greater efforts to become more self-sufficient.
As spring sees the arrival of the growing season, now is the ideal time to take a good look at your garden and consider how to create the perfect vegetable patch. Vegetable gardens have come a long way since the haphazard plots hidden behind a shed or garage, or at the bottom of the lawn. Instead, with raised beds and trellis you can transform a vegetable patch into a wonderful focal point.
To make your vegetable garden extra special, you don’t have to stick to traditional home grown fruit and vegetables, such as carrots, lettuce, potatoes or strawberries. Instead, why not choose more colourful and decorative varieties such as chillies, peppers, asparagus and globe artichoke? As long as you’re providing the right environment for your produce to thrive, only your imagination is the limit!
If you want to put this year’s bad weather spell behind you and make the most of your garden this season, here’s some ideas on how to make your vegetable patch look pretty. While some of these suggestions work for larger gardens, we also feature some inspiring ideas for smaller gardens.
Raised Beds – click here to view our range of sleepers and trellis.
Tiered Vegetable Patch
A vegetable patch doesn’t have to be solely functional; it can be attractive too, and there are many ways to create this look. One idea is to use sleepers to create a terraced garden with several raised beds and each tier could represent a separate section such as fruit in one part, exotic vegetables in another, and so on. At the back of your garden (up against the fencing) you may want to use trellis for your climbing plants. Just make sure that the produce you choose to grow is planted in the right conditions, as this will ensure that your vegetables will thrive.
One example of what to grow on a tiered garden is globe artichokes; these are ornamental and make a fantastic garden display. The seeds should be sown in March or April and they can also be bought as pot grown plants; globe artichokes work well in pretty much any good garden soil.
Ornate Vegetable Patch
With vegetable patches, you can be as decorative or as inventive as you like. Ornate vegetable patches can be hidden behind archways or behind walls so that you create your very own secret garden! You could take ideas from gardens of historic buildings, or stately homes, or draw up your own plans and put them into action. Regardless of what type of vegetable patch you are creating, it is always a good idea to add trellising as this will create a fantastic focal point.
Courgettes look beautiful when grown up garden trellis as they produce wonderful yellow flowers. They are easy to grow and can be sown late May or early June. A top tip is to harvest them when they are about 5 inches, as this will give them a lengthier cropping period.
Basic Vegetable Patch
If you would like to create a low maintenance vegetable patch, vegetable gardens look just as good with one, rather than several raised beds. If you are creating a raised bed with railway sleepers yourself, make sure that the vegetable patch is at a comfortable height as this allows for easy maintenance.
A great choice for a low maintenance vegetable patch is rhubarb as it’s a very hardy perennial and its colourful stems look fantastic on a raised bed. A top tip is to cover the ground with a mulch of composted manure.
Vegetable Patch for Small Gardens
No matter how tiny your garden is, you can still have a vegetable patch. In fact, even if you live in a flat, without access to a garden, even the smallest apartments will allow for an indoor or outdoor window box for herbs or vegetables.
If you have a courtyard garden, you could either grow vegetables in pots or, if the courtyard consists of a mainly paved area with soil borders, you can still plant vegetables in these borders. A top tip is to use trellising in these areas so you can plant climbing plants as this will create a stunning feature!
Runner beans are a good choice for a small garden and are easy to grow. The seeds can be sown late May or early June and a top tip is to create two rows to grow up trellising as the plants will be easier to support. Another idea is to create an upside down cone out of bamboo canes for the runner beans to grow up – as this will make an interesting garden feature.
Trellis – click here to view our range of sleepers and trellising.