Garden edges and fences make wonderful areas to increase productivity.
The outside edges of your garden are often an in the ground barrier against grass or weeds invasion. This is called garden edging, and they tend to work well.
My garden edges are focused on vertical plants
Because we have to protect our garden from elk and deer, a 8 foot fence is around a lot of our perimeter. This fence line is perfect for an easy garden trellis that stays in the same place year-to-year.
I love using garden fences as another opportunity for harvests or flowers
We’ve grown the following plants on our garden edges up the fences:
- Pumpkins and winter squash
- Sweet peas for fragrant flowers
- Shell peas for a tasty snack
- Scarlet runner beans for a late season dry bean
- Grapes as a perennial fruit
I love to grow flowers on the edges too.
Below you can see lavender and grapes against the garden fence to make a productive use of garden edges
Climbing plants create shade for broccoli and lettuce
Although by the end of summer the lettuce below bolted, the broccoli and greens grown under partial shade lasted far longer in the garden before bolting. Below you can see squash vines intermingling with grapevines and sweet pea flowers.
Your garden edges are also great for perennial flowers
That way they’ll self-sow but stay on the edge line instead of the middle of your garden. Flowers like poppies, cornflowers or calendula are great for this.
The edges are also great for tall plants like sunflowers
Sunflowers or other tall plants like sunchokes, corn etc, can shade out other plants in your garden. If you grow them on the edges, they won’t reduce precious sunlight onto your other crops.
Have you grown plants up your garden fence line to make use of garden edges?
My name is Isis Loran, creator of the Family Food Garden. I’ve been gardening for over 10 years now and push the limits of our zone 5 climates. I love growing heirlooms & experimenting with hundreds of varieties, season extending, crunchy homesteading and permaculture.