Garden Beauty

Gorgeous Summer Blooming Perennials

summer blooming perennials in the garden

Are you a vegetable gardener, a perennial gardener, or both? Did pursuing one lead to an interest in the other?

I often teach and travel with the Creative Vegetable Gardener, and it’s interesting to meet gardeners from all over the country and discover whether they grow just flowers, just vegetables, or flowers and vegetables. Each type of gardening has its own tricks and techniques, and what you learn in one doesn’t necessarily translate into the other.

But, if you grow perennials and vegetables, like I do, it can be fun to try to bring those two gardens together as much as possible in your landscape. One way I’ve done this is to create a perennial garden located between my front yard vegetable garden and the street.

This has multiple benefits: my vegetable garden can borrow some of the color from the perennial border during times of the year when it’s not terribly interesting (early spring), the perennial flowers draw scores of beneficial insects and pollinators into the front yard, which benefits my vegetables, and the perennial border puts a pretty face on the front of my property and serves as a buffer between my food and the street.

Your Garden Should Make You Feel Good

vegetable garden

In one of the classes I teach we start off with a garden visualization. We close our eyes and imagine ourselves sitting in our summer gardens.

(Come on, play along!)

It’s one of those crystal clear, blue sky days with no humidity and no mosquitoes (and no weeds?!). Just a perfect summer day.

When everyone has transported themselves into their gardens, I ask them the following questions:

What do you see?

What do you hear?

What do you smell?

How do you feel?

Then, I give them some time to reflect on and write down the images and sensations they experienced.

Adding Beauty to Your Garden with Flowers

front yard vegetable garden

A common complaint about vegetable gardens is that they’re not very attractive. I couldn’t disagree more! You can have a garden that produces a lot of food and is also a beautiful part of your home landscape.

The simplest thing you can do to elevate your garden from a place where you grow food to a garden that draws in and wows visitors and passersby on the street is to add flowers.

And the easiest place to add flowers is on the ends of your garden beds. (Don’t have garden beds? Here’s why you need them.)

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