Would you like to grow your own fresh veggies at home in a plant garden layout which is attractive as well as productive? A potager kitchen garden is a vegetable garden in which there is a delightful mix of vegetables, herbs, flowers and maybe even a fruit tree or two. Get some ideas here for planning your own potager design.
The French kitchen garden, called the potager ( expounded pot-ah-zhay ) traditionally provided the ingredients for potage ( soup or plant broth ). In medieval times the monks and nuns used these kitchen gardens to provide flowers for the church and vegetables for the inhabitants of the abbey. Whereas the English cottage garden is a random, haphazard collection of flowers, veg and herbs growing together, these potagers were geometrical and ordered.
The potager garden could be small or large and is mostly made from square, oblong, circular or diamond-shaped garden beds prepared in a repeating geometrical pattern. The plants within the beds are also planted in groups or patterns. In a larger garden, the entire garden might be besieged by a clipped hedge with an arbor for a climbing vine ( e.g. Passion fruit ) to mark the entrance.
The concept is to have masses of color and interesting textures – colorful frilly lettuces to frame the paths, swiss chard with brightly coloured stems, curly blue-green kale, purple sprouting broccoli, red chicory, red-stemmed beetroot, feathery carrots ( their leaves that is ), runner beans on a tepee with beautiful red flowers and long green pods, French climbing beans with green, purple or yellow pods, feathery asparagus and colorful fruiting veg such as chili peppers, sweet peppers, tomatoes and eggplant.
Besides the flowers on the veg, you can plant eatable flowers, grow flowers for their companion planting properties or for cut flowers. Common companion flowers include marigold, nasturtium, chamomile and yarrow.