Yes, we are here!

At MOTHER EARTH LIVING and MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we have been educating folks about the benefits of self-reliance for 50 years. That includes researching and sourcing the best books and products to help individuals master the skills they need in times like these and beyond. Our online store is open and we are here to answer any questions you might have. Our customer service staff is available Monday through Friday from 8a.m.-5p.m. CDT. We can be reached at 1-800-456-6018 or by email. Stay safe!

Garden Spaces: Plant the Easiest Garden Ever

When life intrudes on your hobby, try this garden plan to ease the workload.

| August/September 2011

  • Illustration by Gayle Ford
  • Click on the IMAGE GALLERY, then NEXT for the planting key.
    Illustration by Gayle Ford

• Design Plans: Grow These Plants for the Easiest Garden Ever

Even if gardening is one of our favorite things to do, sometimes life sends us scrambling in other directions. We all know the feeling of being pulled from all sides, when we just don’t have the time or energy to tend the big garden of our fantasies. Perhaps it’s a new baby or grandchild, or recuperation from surgery, illness or injury, or a new and demanding job. There are many reasons why even the most avid gardeners among us occasionally yearn for a small, manageable, no-fuss garden bed.

If you find yourself in that position, take a tip from the growing numbers of backyard veggie growers who use 4-by-4 or 4-by-8-foot wooden box frames for tidy, little raised beds. Simple to put together, they are the easiest kind of garden beds imaginable to maintain, and there’s no reason you can’t borrow that concept for a small, neat perennial herb bed. The simple frame sets off the bountiful look of the herbs beautifully, and when you sit at the edge, every plant and weed is within reach.

The herb garden shown here is designed to be attractive even with very little time and effort from the gardener. After setting it up and filling it with a good soil, you can choose tough herbs that will pretty much take care of themselves but still provide plenty of flowers to make it colorful and cheerful. Herbs can showcase their carefree nature in a bed like this.

The Prep Work

For a little garden that won’t suck time and energy from you throughout the growing season, spend the time and money necessary to get it set up properly, which will pay you back for years.

Choose a spot in full sun, or at least six hours of sunlight a day. If it’s in an obvious place—close by or somewhere that you walk past and see every day—all the better. For example, a front-yard lawn would be a fine place for beds like this, which would cut down on the endless mowing, feeding and watering that most lawns require. Because you’re raising the bed, you can build it right on top of the grass, which will be smothered and gradually break down to feed the roots of the plants in the bed above it.

Subscribe today and save 58%

Get the latest on Healthy Living and Natural Beauty!

Mother Earth LivingRedefine beauty and embrace holistic living with Mother Earth Living by your side. Each issue  provides you with easy, hands-on ways to connect your life with the natural world -- from eating seasonally to culinary and medicinal uses of herbs; from aromatherapy and DIY cosmetics to yoga and beyond. Start your journey to holistic living today and you’ll discover all the best and latest information you want on choosing natural remedies and practicing preventive medicine; cooking with a nutritious and whole-food focus; creating a nontoxic home; and gardening for food, wellness and enjoyment. Subscribe to Mother Earth Living today to get inspired on the art of living wisely and living well.

Save Money & a Few Trees!

Pay now with a credit card and take advantage of our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. You’ll save an additional $5 and get six issues of Mother Earth Living for just $19.95! (Offer valid only in the U.S.)

Or, choose Bill Me and pay just $24.95.

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter


click me