Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Veggie or Kitchen Garden? There's a Difference!?!


I'm apparently the only person in the world who doesn't know that vegetable gardening comes in many forms. As I've delved deeper into the vegetable gardening world I have readily admitted that I'm an idiot. I know nothing. Absolutely nothing. And so as always I grabbed my trusty mouse and began my research. In a past life I might have been a researcher for the NY Times or something more devious like the IRS. Today however, I believe that I have turned my researching knack into an artform. For today, I have turned an idiot into a novice in the ways of vegetables.

As I began my research journey I started with Wikipedia's Vegetable Garden and then proceeded to Wikipedia's Kitchen Garden. I was struck with a new thought. "There's a difference?" Why had nobody told me?!? After hours of research I've determined that ultimately the difference is this: Veggie gardens grow veggies and some fruits like tomatoes. Kitchen gardens grow veggies, fruits, herbs, and flowers edible and decorative. Now that I know the difference I believe that I've been wanting a kitchen garden. Go figure!

However this discovery provided yet another "I never knew that" moment. (I know that's common with me.) It was as I moved from Wikipedia to more traditional garden sites that I read a wonderful 2 part article by P. Allen Smith aptly named Starting a Kitchen Garden. From this article I learned that there is a difference between raised garden beds and framed garden beds. Again, Why had nobody told me!?! The main difference: A raised garden bed does not need to have sides. It can be just mounded soil. Meanwhile, a framed garden bed needs (obviously) a frame around the soil such as wood, rock, bricks, etc. However, a framed garden bed must be bottomless. That sounds kinda dirty...P. Allen Smith explains it so much better.

With that useful information tucked inside my brain (probably never to be heard from again) I made my way to BHG's Eye-Catching Kitchen Garden. Aha! I'm already a member of this site so I am eligible to download the PDF file that gives me a detailed layout diagram, a list of plants for the garden as shown, and complete instructions for installing the garden. Finally (tears of joy streaming down my face) I've found Gardening for Dummies! I've been just praying for someone to tell me where, how and what to plant. It's a Halleluiah Moment! But it looks too good to be true. Can I really do this? Is it really possible?

If only there was a gardener out there who showed a real picture. Or better yet a slideshow! A real gardener showing that yes kitchen gardens are possible, are pretty, and can be a dream come true. Wait! I've found that Gardener. Terry L. Yockey of Northern Gardening (a site I'm sure most of you are fond of) has been gracious enough to provide a visual step by step through the construction of a beautiful and real kitchen garden. This slideshow (viewable only in Internet Explorer) gave me a feeling of "I CAN DO IT!"

When I joined my garden club 10 years ago I begged the ladies to help me to stop killing my plants. It's taken me 10 years to finally feel comfortable claiming to be a "gardener". I love my ever changing flower beds. And as a friend recently pointed out to me...I've become obsessed. So I've set myself a new goal. In 10 years, I hope to be just as comfortable with being a "kitchen gardener" as I am with perrenial flowers. Give me a few decades and I might even try hydroponics!

11 comments:

lilymarlene said...

You visited my blog (thankyou!) and suggested I do a title for each post. i had noticed that others do a title on theirs, but there is no facility on mine to do so. How do I do it?
Thanks....

Tina said...

Ummm...you forgot the herb catagory that must be included for those kitchen gardens...
~ducks~

GardenJoy4Me said...

Hi CJ !
I didn't know there was such a difference really either .. other than a potage garden .. which is something more of what I do in my back gardens .. interweaving herbs among the flowers etc .. French influence in our country, one of which I truly enoy !
It is so satisfying to find information that we can really use let alone understand !
Good Job !
Thanks for posting on it !
Joy of the frozen north .... sigh !

lilymarlene said...

Thanks for trying to help me with my blog....!
I know you won't believe this, but the only box on the top of my "compose" form is the "Font" one. At the bottom of the compose form is the box for Labels....and that is all.
I have hunted all over settings andtemplate for a way to get a title box ...to no avail

Anna--Flowergardengirl said...

It just tickles me to death to read how you put all that info together. I'm glad I didn't miss this post. You sure are ambitious if you are going to make such a beautiful kitchen garden---but that would be my style too. I want flowers also. Seems like a framed bed would be better than a raised one. Which one are you going to do?

Matron said...

There was a project last year at the RHS garden at Wisley in Surrey, they made a 10ft square garden and tried to plant it full up year round. You might google this and find out more, it was very successful.

Robin's Nesting Place said...

Yolanda Elizabet at Bliss has the most beautiful Potager/kitchen garden. She has done a masterful job incorporating everything you mentioned and she has lots of pictures on her blog. Also Robin/Bumblebee also has a lovely kitchen garden. Look them up on blotanical and check out their blogs.

robbinscabin said...

WOW! Thanks everyone for all the info. I'm starting to get a better grip on what I want...or so I think. I definetly will be doing a "framed" bed. Not sure if I'll use lumber or rock as an edging. We'll see. Thanks again. I'm going to love tracking down all these great sites.

Jim/ArtofGardening said...

You want a classic potager garden? Visit my post about Villandry! If you're considering a vegetable garden, this may just blow your mind.

Visit:
http://web.mac.com/charlierj/ArtOfGardening/Home/Entries/2008/1/28_Villandry_Gardens.html

palani said...

very nice.

Kitchen Garden

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