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Gulf Coast Gardening: Edible Plants For Every Garden

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Discover the benefits of mixing in flowers and herbs with vegetables. Read how Cynthia "Meems" Glover adds peppers, okra and other edibles to her garden.

Harvest a bounty of food crops by interplanting them in your flowerbeds.
Integrate vegetables into the landscape.

Taste Your Landscape?
The resurgence of edible gardening in recent years has folks discovering the rewards of growing their own food. It's encouraging to see landscapes of lawn and flowers sharing space with beautiful food-producing plants.

If you don't have space to create a separate vegetable-and-herb garden, integrate edibles into the landscape. Pepper plants or okra look stunning growing alongside salvia in a flower border. Determine the growing requirements of the edibles you want to plant, and match sunlight and watering requirements with existing annuals or perennials.

Herbs such as dill draw pollinators such as bees and butterflies.

I discovered the benefits of mixing flowers and herbs with my vegetables. Now my edible garden is surrounded by perennials and ornamentals that draw pollinators and maintain color while the vegetables come in and out of production.

The outer edges of the garden curve gently to blend with the landscape. Rather than tidy rows of the same plant soldiered next to one another, I've mixed edbles and perennials to mimic a more natural setting.

Combine annuals, perennials, herbs and vegetables into patio containers.

Ornamental and Edible Ideas?
Here are three ways to add edibles to your landscape:

1. Plant in Containers. For those with limited space, plant edibles in containers on patios and porches. Easy-access container crops of tomatoes, lettuce, parsley, basil, oregano and even radishes will supply dinner menus with yummy, tasty additions.

Snap peas offer vertical coverage in the garden.

2. Grow Vertical. Erect a trellis in flowerbeds for climbing varieties such as pole beans or snap peas. Once you've enjoyed fresh-picked produce you'll be inspired to replant every season.

Bronze fennel adds fine foliage to gardens as well as offers food for butterfly larvae.

3. Add Leafy Textures. Tuck in beautiful bronze fennel amid glossy Agapanthus or wispy Gaura (Gaura lindheimeri) to give your perennial border added texture and foliage. Fennel is a host plant for black swallowtail butterfly larva (Papilio polyxenes asterius). What a fabulous added bonus!

What vegetables or herbs do you plan to grow this season? And where?