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Video: Creating A Garden Bed Of Spicy Plants And Salads
2023 Author: Sebastian Paterson | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 11:24
How I created a decorative vegetable bed
I had a dream: to create a decorative vegetable garden on my site, on which vegetables, and spicy herbs, and salads, and flowers would grow.
But my husband did not take this venture seriously, considering it another whim. But this year, a miracle happened: my husband gave me the ridge on which the watermelons grew last year. I was happy to have the opportunity to realize my project, which had been nurtured for three years.
And so I started to implement it. I really wanted this idea to give results and not to be disappointed at the end of the season, so I tried to think through everything to the smallest detail.
First, I decided on the assortment of plants, and then I had to thoroughly think about how to group them so that the proximity of different cultures was favorable, so that they did not suppress each other. I had to study their biological properties. The choice of plants also depended on their decorative effect. When I finished their selection, the name of the garden came by itself - kitchen. True, judging by the name, the kitchen ridge should be located closer to the kitchen. The ridge allotted to me was at a considerable distance from it. But this did not change the essence of the ridge.
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Spicy herbs and salads became the basis of the ridge. My favorite basil became the "soloist" among the herbs. I have been working on its varieties for several years. I added salads to the basil, here I tried to take into account not only their usefulness, but also the color and decorativeness of its leaves.
The ridge also needed verticals to give it flavor. In this role, I played sweet corn.
I began to think: what would look beautiful against the background of these verticals. And the choice fell on the Swiss chard beet, and I decided to plant two varieties: with both red and green leaves. And in the center between them I decided to sow cucumber grass. This choice turned out to be very successful. In the past cool summer, four chard plants formed spectacular bushes and became an object that attracts attention to this ridge. The red chard was especially beautiful.
And this is what the final assortment of crops on the ridge was: parsley, dill, coriander, marjoram and savory. Pak choy cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli also hit it. The plantings of nasturtium and perilla fit well into this ridge. The latter, with its luxurious violet-red leaves, very enlivened and supplemented light green salads and vegetables in the garden.
The kitchen bed turned out to be quite large: its size is 6 m in length and 1.5 m in width. It was located from north to south in a sunny place. It was high - it was raised 50 cm above the ground. Good drainage was laid at its base.
The soil for the plants did not have to be specially prepared, they got it after the watermelons, and we always lay good nutrition for this culture. In addition, the previous fall, after removing the watermelons, we sowed it with rye. Under the snow, the ridge went green, and in the spring the rye was 30 cm high. True, in the spring we put the green mass of rye from this bed in another warm ridge.
There were almost no weeds on the future kitchen bed, so preparing it for planting did not require much labor. They loosened the top layer of the soil a little - and the ridge is ready. Thus, an almost perfect start was provided for the plants planned for planting: a sunny spot in a garden bed with fertile soil, loose as fluff. And the plants themselves were pre-sown for seedlings, which guaranteed a more rapid onset of the decorative effect of the beds.
The first inhabitant of it was sweet corn, which we planted in early June along the entire length of the ridge from the eastern side. Corn of the Creamy Nectar variety was sown for seedlings in early May in separate half-liter cups of sour cream, and by early June its seedlings were ready for planting in open ground.
But, as it turned out, we rushed with this operation, because from June 7 to June 8, there was a severe frost in our area. And although the plantings were covered with covering material, in the morning there was almost nothing left of the plants on the surface of the ridge. I tried to treat each of them with a stimulant "Ribav-extra", watered the corn, or rather, what was left of it, at the root with this drug.
Several days passed, the processing did not give any result, so I decided to replace corn with beans. And in the interval between it, she sowed seeds of climbing fiery red beans of the Winner variety. I decided that these beans are an annual liana, and in the future they will form a decorative fence for me here.
The spring frosts have passed, strong healthy seedlings have grown. It was a warm, windless evening in mid-June, and I began to create my own kitchen bed. Everything turned out to be a very exciting business, because it was already a creative work: I, as an artist, created a decorative picture with the help of colorful plants. And my canvas was the garden. I was provided with an approach to her from all sides, and since she was high, I hardly had to bend over.
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With such a mixed and compacted planting of crops, a lot had to be taken into account: both the fact that some of them could occupy a significant area by the end of the season, and the peculiarities of their root system. Therefore, for chard, which has deep roots, I planted salads, the roots of which are close to the soil surface. This was necessary so that during the growing season the plants did not compete with each other for water and nutrients. In addition, chard bushes grow strongly over the season, but salads growing nearby will gradually go to the kitchen.
As a result, an assortment of plants appeared on the kitchen bed: two red and two green chard bushes; borage cucumber bush; Pak Choi cabbage of Prima and Swallow varieties; broccoli cabbage of the Tonus variety; cauliflower varieties Alrami; salads of varieties Northern Blush, Lollo Rossa, Emerald Lace, Ballet, New Year's, Delightful, Pearl Jam; basilicas of varieties Ginnovez, Troll, Tempter, Thai Queen, Clove aroma; Pervenets coriander, savory and garden marjoram. I also planted leafy parsley of the Rialto and Titan varieties, as well as the Mulatka perilla. This herb is also referred to as the "Korean spice herb." There was also a place on the ridge for two varieties of nasturtium - Alaska and King Theodore.
Both varieties of pak-choy cabbage, after planting in the ground, began to quickly form a raised rosette of leaves. We began to eat this cabbage as soon as it managed to grow ten leaves. Later they began to rip off whole rosettes. Its leaves and petioles are delicious. However, at the beginning of July, some of the plants went to the spit, and we removed them from the garden. This type of cabbage is good as an early summer and autumn crop. But the garden bed did not suffer from the decline of some plants, because the vacant space was occupied by neighboring crops.
Having suffered from the freeze, our sweet corn did not disappear at all. After treatment with a stimulant, she recovered and began to throw out her spectacular leaves, quickly build up vegetative mass. But since I hurried to sow beans between the corn, these plantings turned out to be thickened. It was a pity to throw away the beans, and we left them, allowing us to fight for our existence with our neighbors. I must say that she survived and gave a crop, of course, less than it should be. The beans bloomed tirelessly throughout the season and formed long 30 cm pods until the end of September. We also got sweet cobs from corn plantings, albeit late in time and not in the same amount as in previous years.
Cauliflower gave a good harvest. The Alrami variety turned out to be very early ripening, it has a beautiful, almost vertical rosette of leaves. The head of the cabbage was formed white, dense, weighing 300-400 grams. And these heads were tied very amicably. And their taste deserves the kindest words.
Broccoli also turned out to be early ripening, quickly formed heads, and when we cut off the top ones, another layer formed on the side branches. She also bore fruit in early September. We also got a very good harvest of parsley, basil, lettuce and Swiss chard from this ridge. All season we have been cutting fresh herbs from our kitchen bed to the table.
In short, we made sure that such decorative beds decorate the garden, creating a bright juicy spot on it, and the crops growing on them provide a continuous conveyor of vitamin greens, replacing each other.
No special care was required for the kitchen bed, since all the plants on it are unpretentious. And since the past summer was rainy, there was almost no need to water it. Despite the fact that the bed is high, we watered the plants on it only after planting the seedlings, and then once more over the summer.
While our vitamin crops were growing, all care consisted only in loosening the soil. Once a season I weeded out annual weeds in the garden. We do not have perennials on such warm beds, since we prepare them very carefully for planting and select all the roots of perennial weeds.
There were also problems. The frost created them for us, the period when the years of butterflies began and cabbage pests appeared was also dangerous. We fought with them with ash, dusting cabbage bushes with it. As a result, none of them suffered. It was evident that neighboring plants also helped us, frightening off pests with their spicy smell. And the cold rainy weather was probably compensated by the height of our ridge and the warm soil in it.
I want to say that not all plants felt comfortable in the garden. Nasturtium and three parsley bushes competed with each other. This discomfort continued until the nasturtium grew and covered competitors with its leaves. The bushes began to wither, completely weakened, and I had to remove them. And the nasturtium was glad that it had emerged victorious, it had grown even more in breadth. Then I learned that parsley and nasturtium are bad partners.
And in the fight for a place in the sun for coriander and parsley, parsley emerged victorious. The coriander began to slow down its growth, turn pale, wither. It was evident that the parsley did not like such a neighbor either. I removed the coriander bushes from the ridge. And parsley, having won its place, immediately began to intensively increase the rosette of leaves. This suggests that it is necessary to select neighbors more carefully. For example, basil does not like marjoram, although the marjoram itself does not experience a negative effect from such a neighborhood. Cucumber herb does not like parsley, but parsley is neutral about it.
And yet this ridge has become a decoration of our garden. Of course, it is still far from a true ornamental garden, while only an option has turned out. More precisely, a touch in writing this fascinating picture. This season there will be another project. I would like to make it more expressive and attractive. After analyzing what worked and what did not work, I will add more strokes of flowers to my "picture", maybe I will add some decorative elements, I will work with the form. And what the kitchen garden will look like in 2009 - time will tell.
I advise all readers to also try to create interesting compositions of decorative beds this season. Believe me, this is a very exciting experience.
I wish you all good luck and success!