all you can eat from your own back­yard!

Better Homes and Gardens (Australia) - - Garden Walkaround -

o fresh, so con­ve­nient and so sat­is­fy­ing. That’s the na­ture of home­grown food. This gar­dener so en­joyed the plant­ing and grow­ing process, plus the pride of serv­ing food she’d grown her­self, she kept tak­ing more space in her back­yard. To­day, the gar­den pro­duces a range of fruit and veg, there are a few chooks for fresh eggs, and even a colony of na­tive bees who help to pol­li­nate the crops.

1 Ap­pear­ance mat­ters

in a fam­ily back­yard, so it’s laid out with lots of space, and all the ma­te­ri­als used are at­trac­tive and long last­ing.

This self-suf­fi­cient sub­ur­ban patch pro­duces a de­li­cious sup­ply of fresh fruit, ve­g­ies and eggs

2 Dec­o­ra­tive metal screens

are used as a de­sign el­e­ment and to di­vide gar­den beds. They can also be used to sup­port climb­ing plants and are handy for hang­ing bas­kets.

3 You can make raised beds

by us­ing re­cy­cled fruit harvest boxes, knock up your own us­ing hard­wood pal­ings or buy kits. Stand the boxes on bricks to ven­ti­late the un­der­sides.

4 Are pos­sums eat­ing all of your fruit?

Net­ting trees is the sim­plest way to keep your crop safe from hun­gry birds and other an­i­mals. Just make sure that you use wildlife-friendly net­ting.

5 Made from re­cy­cled

or re­claimed ma­te­ri­als, this shed has three rooms one for stor­age, one for tools and one for prop­a­ga­tion. The cladding of re­cy­cled wharf deck­ing gives it a won­der­fully aged look.

6 As fruit trees grow

they cast more and more shade, which can make grow­ing ve­g­ies harder as they need lots of sun. But there are dwarf trees that grow to a frac­tion of the bulk of their stan­dard cousins. Dwarf va­ri­eties pro­duce full-size fruit, are good crop­pers and can also be grown in big pots.

7 Want a worm farm?

Use an old bath­tub! Raise it up so you can place a bucket un­der the drain hole to col­lect the liq­uid gold that drips out. Well wa­tered down, it makes a won­der­ful free fer­tiliser. Al­ways keep the worm farm cov­ered with hes­sian or old car­pet and place it in a warm spot, but out of the blaz­ing hot sun.

8 Grow­ing ed­i­bles doesn’t mean sac­ri­fic­ing aes­thet­ics.

Here’s a com­bi­na­tion of fo­liage colours, shapes, sizes and tex­tures. From front are red-leaved sor­rel, curly pars­ley, vel­vety-leaved clary sage and the com­mon culi­nary herb, sage. All are ed­i­ble or medic­i­nal.

9 Three chick­ens are enough

for a fresh egg a day, but they do need a roomy, fox-proof coop even in the sub­urbs of ma­jor cities and most coun­cils have reg­u­la­tions so best check first.

Broc­coli Sil­ver­beet 3 2 Flow­er­ing plum Bok choy Cavolo nero 4

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