Participating in the grow-your-own movement is important to both reduce your food miles and control what makes it onto your family’s table. If you’ve hesitated to take part because installing and caring for a traditional vegetable garden doesn’t seem to suit your life or your sense of style, Kitchen Garden Revival is here to show you there’s a better, more beautiful way to grow food.
Instead of row after row of cabbage and pepper plants plunked into a patch of dirt in the middle of the yard, kitchen gardens are attractive, highly tailored food gardens consisting of easy-to-maintain raised planting beds laid out in an organized geometric pattern. Offering both four seasons of ornamental interest and plenty of fresh, homegrown fruits, vegetables, and herbs, kitchen gardens are the way to grow your own food in a fashionable, modern, and practical way.
Kitchen gardens were once popular features of the European and early American landscape, but they fell out of favor when our agrarian roots were displaced by industrialization. With this accessible and inspirational guide, Nicole aims to return the kitchen garden to its rightful place just outside of every backdoor.
Learn the art of kitchen gardening as you discover:
- What characteristics all kitchen gardens have in common
- How to design and install gorgeous kitchen garden beds using metal, wood, or stone
- Why raised beds mean reduced maintenance
- What crops are best for your kitchen garden
- A planting, tending, and harvesting plan developed by a pro
- Season-by-season growing guides
It's time to join the Kitchen Garden Revival and start growing your own delicious, organic food.
From the Publisher
What’s a Kitchen Garden and Why It’s Time for a Revival
Kitchen Garden: A garden where vegetables, fruits, and herbs are grown for everyday use in the kitchen
“So, what exactly is a kitchen garden? Is it a garden inside the kitchen?” (I get this question a lot).
Called kailyards in Scotland and known as potagers in France (sounds fancy, right?), a kitchen garden is a place closely connected with your kitchen and everyday life. It’s a distinct area of your home and landscape where vegetables, fruits, and herbs are grown for culinary use.
A kitchen garden can be as small as a collection of garden boxes on the patio or deck or it can be as large as a formal stone garden that covers hundreds of square feet. No matter the size, the purpose is the same: a garden that’s tended regularly and used frequently in everyday meals.
It’s not a vegetable patch or homestead. It’s much smaller and doesn’t require nearly the amount of work those do. Unlike a farm, which is cleared all at once, planted all at once, and harvested (you guessed it) all at once, a kitchen garden is tended regularly.
Why a Kitchen Garden revival?
Kitchen gardens, though we may have forgotten the term, aren’t a new concept. They’ve been a thing for thousands of years. But somewhere along our way of progress, we lost the kitchen garden. With the input of technology and industry, our food systems have changed dramatically over the last century. And while not all the change has been bad, the kitchen garden is something that should’ve stayed.
To create whole and happy lives, for the beauty in our homes, for the benefit of our community and for the good of the world, it’s time for a kitchen garden revival. A revival is a magical thing. Perhaps this book will be that seed. (Fingers crossed!) But I’ll need you to bring the rain and the sunshine.
HOW TO TAKE THE NEXT STEP IN THE KITCHEN GARDEN REVIVAL
Ready to grow your self even more? This revival can’t happen without you!
If you’ve never grown a thing before, don’t forget the Gardenary (gardenary.com) step-by step plan.
There are loads of resources in addition to the journal to help you start growing herbs or salad greens right away. Grab yours at gardenary.com/book
Once you’ve begun to enjoy herbs and greens from containers or small planters, you’ll feel the nudge to go bigger. It’s time to install a full kitchen garden (even if it’s just one raised bed), add trellises or supports, and start growing roots and fruits.
Already growing or can’t stop talking about your garden experiences? We’d love to have you on the Gardenary platform as a Kitchen Garden Business or a Gardenary coach. Don’t forget: My mission isn’t just to bring back the kitchen garden but also to make gardening a viable profession.
So, if you’ve fallen in love with gardening and want to share that passion by coaching and helping others, Gardenary is the place for you. And bonus—you’ve already completed step one in the application process by reading this book!
As always, share your kitchen garden moments—the wins and the struggles—using #mykitchengardenrevival anywhere you post on the web. I’ll be looking for you!
QUICK TIPS FOR EASY HARVESTS
Woody Herbs (Lamiaceae Family)
Begin with locally grown plants
Harvest outside and lower leaves regularly within 2 weeks of planting
Lettuce & Greens (Asteraceae Family)
Begin with seeds
Thin if necessary
Harvest outside and lower leaves frequently within 4 weeks of planting
Root Crops (Umbellifer, Brassica, and Amaranth Families)
Begin with seeds
Thin if necessary
Harvest a few at a time within 45 to 90 days after planting
Fruit Crops (Solanaceae and Cucurbit Families)
Begin with seeds or locally grown plants
Fertilize weekly or bi-weekly
Protect, if necessary
Harvest 60 to 100 days after planting
START PLANTS FROM SEED
Add water to the potting soil mix and mix in thoroughly.
Fill the cells to the top with moistened soil mix.
Using a dibber, make the planting hole to the proper depth.
Place the seeds at the proper depth in each hole.