Gardening can be as complicated or as simple as you make it. For novice gardeners or people without the luxury of space A Simple Kitchen Garden offers a terrific way to eat the ultimately local food. Companion planting is an easy way to create a bed of vivacious beauty without the aide of chemicals.
My parents make an annual pilgrimage to California for "Snoopy's Senior World Hockey Tournament" in which my father participates. While visiting their favorite bookshop in Santa Rosa they picked up Rosalind Creasy's Book, "The Edible Italian Garden" for me. This visually stunning book, full of mouth watering recipes was my introduction to companion planting.
The flowers/herbs Borage and Nasturtium are magical for any garden layout as they assist in the growth of all sorts of fruits, vegetables and herbs, The leaves and flowers of both are edible. Nasturtium taste a bit peppery and their medium sized colorful flowers are ideal for stuffing with crab meat and goat cheese. Borage can be a bit invasive, but it's lovely cucumber flavored leaves are easily spotted and weeded out. The flowers of borage are delicate blue stars that lend themselves well to sugaring.
A couple simple ideas for companion planting in small spaces.
Beans, lettuces, stawberries and borage
Cucumbers, beets, peas and fragrant marigolds.
Squash, radishes, corn and sunflowers
Fresh Ideas for local Fruit and Veggies
Photo Credit: Rosalind Creasy