Few questions-new home

catsgurleygirl(7)November 19, 2013

Hello Everyone,
My husband and I are moving and I was wondering if I could get a few questions answered about our new backyard. We really want a vegetable garden, but I do want it to be aesthetically pleasing and to fit in with the backyard (we did the community vegetable gardens for a few years, so I am familiar with gardening and I know that all gardens start to look pitiful towards the end of the season, I am just talking about design). We also have a stone retaining wall and I was wondering if it would be worth it to plant anything up there or if it's best just to leave that space alone (or if anyone has any really cool ideas for on the wall or in front of it, etc). The house is on a corner lot-however it is on a dead end, so we were going to petition the city to move the fence out on the side yard as far as we can to the sidewalk to reclaim that area. If we are successful, we will get an extra 10 ft deep (at least). The back yard slopes up to the fence in one section, and I am wondering if it would be worth it to try to garden it as is (maybe do squash or something like that) or would it be much better to try and do some terracing, there is a wooded area behind that section and I don�t even know how much sun something would get there (the house faces west). Anyway, I appreciate you taking the time! Btw, the two pics I included to try to give a sense of what I am talking about. The second picture, while elementary looking was the best I could come up with-the red "S" denotes where the slope is, the green rectangle denotes where we are thinking about doing the veg garden, the yellow line denotes the property boundary and the pink arrow shows where we want to move the shed. Thanks!


P.S. Sorry for the multiple repy postings, I havent figured out how to put multiple pics on one post.

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Another view:

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:07AM
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Another sho showing the retaining wall (there is 2 to 3 ft of space between the wall and fence:

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:10AM
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Another view of the wall (also trampoline isn't ours and will be gone):

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:12AM
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View from standing on wall:

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:14AM
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Last shot showing the slope of the yard:

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:16AM
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Oh and that is a french drain in the bottom second third of the pic. Don't know if thats an issue at all.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:24AM
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Where will you get water for the vegetable garden?

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 2:00PM
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The house has a spigot (at least one) in the back, so we can run a hose.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 4:09PM
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There is no reason you can't place a garden where you propose. It could wrap around the yard in an "L" shape if you need to expand it later, but it will not be practical to have a veggie garden on the slope ... that should remain as landscaped space, though you could do more with it than just lawn. It could be very small trees with groundcover below, for example.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 7:47AM
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Great set of photos!

Veggies require sun for a good chunk of the day to do well, so your first job will be to see how much sun the area gets during the season you will be growing veggies.

If you google parterre garden you will get some nice images of how beds can be set up to look pleasing, and this type of raised bed is well suited to gardening in my zone, though I am not sure about zone 10. Tower Hill Botanic Garden has an attractive veggie garden that uses repeated structures (tripods, tomatoes supports, etc.) in consistent materials, as well as thought to how the colors and shapes of the plants look together.

Avoid the french drain. You don't want to do anything to disrupt its function.

Assuming it gets enough sun, you could put one terraced or raised bed across the middle of the slope and grow something large like squash, pumpkins, or indeterminate tomatoes there without have to worry about them shading or overwhelming the other plants. Or you could plant perennials crops such as rhubarb, asparagus or small fruiting trees or shrubs. Just don't plant on the slope as is since water will just run off, and don't plant near your retaining wall since you don't want to disrupt its integrity.

    Bookmark   December 17, 2013 at 11:10AM
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