Make a Potager-style Garden

If you do not have the space for a vegetable plot, would rather not give up any of your flower garden for growing vegetables, but still like the idea of home grown produce, you may like to think about planting a Potager style garden. This is a very old, French way of gardening in which ornamental fruit, vegetables, herbs and flowers all mingle together.

A Potager can be an informal mix of these, a bit like a cottage garden or it can be laid out in a more formal way in squares or as a knot garden edged with Lavender or clipped buxus. It is simple gardening and very easy to do. It doesn’t take a lot of extra planning to tuck some Lettuce or Chard here and there among your flowers, or to interplant Marigolds and Basil with Tomatoes.

It is the planting which is important, with attractive vegetables such as Swiss Chard Bright Lights, Runner BeansFrench BeansCarrotsLettuce, cut and come again Salad LeavesBeetroot and Spring Onions to name but a few, mixed with Herbs like TarragonFennelSage and Thyme.

Intermingled with these are usually grown MarigoldsNasturtiumsSweet Peas and Cornflower, which in turn will encourage bees to pollinate Runner BeansPeas and fruit such as Strawberries and Currants (all these flowering plants have edible flowers)! If you want make a permanent potager, a framework of more permanent planting can be provided by Rosemary or Lavender. Fruit trees such as ApplePearCherry or Apricots can be fan-trained and grown against a warm wall or fence to take up less space.