Who Needs Flowers Anyway?

Most people create beautiful landscaping in their front yards. Curving flower beds, lined with stones or rocks or edging. We did that, too.

But we live in North Texas. Have you experienced a typical summer in North Texas? It’s HOT.
Year after year, we would buy several flats of flowers and make the flowerbeds all pretty in the spring. Then by the end of June, the flowers start to look haggard. By August, the several days of intense 100+ degree heat will have fried the plants to a crisp.

What did we have to show for all the hard planting work?
Not much. Mostly a bunches of dried up, scraggly plants in the flower beds that have to be cleaned up. Bleh.

What could we do to have pretty flower beds, but not toss a lot of money out in the compost trash when it all died?

Plant a garden!

One of the side gardens with four different kinds of lettuce in front of the broc.

One of the side gardens with four different kinds of lettuce in front of the broc.

Winter vegetables are very pretty and love the cold. If you’re in a climate that doesn’t have frozen ground in the winter and you want to garden, why not plant a garden in the front flower beds?  One of the garden experts at our local feed store told me once that he doesn’t plant anything in his front yard unless it’s edible. He doesn’t have much of a backyard, so he takes advantage of what he does have.

This is the second year that we’ve planted broccoli–more than 40 plants across the entire length of the beds. They have lettuce and carrots and spinach to keep them company–although those aren’t growing as I expected. *pouts*

Would you plant your vegetable garden in your front flower beds?  What would you plant? I’d love to hear your gardening plans or experiences!

13 thoughts on “Who Needs Flowers Anyway?

  1. darcyflynn

    Diana, I love it! So inspirational. You make me want to plant, which byw, I’m going to do today! I bought two blueberry bushes yesterday and hubby’s going to plant them in my garden today. Its our 40th wedding anniversay:) that’s my honey do list! Anyway, not planting vegetables, those will come later.
    I live on a farm so my vegetable garden is in the back, by my garden shed ( formally my chicken house).
    I planted broccoli years ago and they were covered in green worms. How do you treat yours organically?

    1. Diana Beebe Post author

      Joy, congratulations on 40 years! ♡
      Let know how the blueberries grow. I don’t have room for berries (someday!).

      For the broccoli, we just pull the green caterpillars. If they are really bad, I use BT Worm Killer. It sounds bad, but it targets those kinds of worms and nothing else.

  2. jolenenavarro

    Great idea. I live in the Texas Hill Country, between the heat and deer it is a struggle. I stick to natives and herbs. Lantana, Verbena and Silvia being my main go too.

    1. Diana Beebe Post author

      I don’t have to deal with deer, but I’ve heard you can use tomato plants to discourage them from gardens. The heat is harder to combat. 😉

      1. darcyflynn

        In Tennessee, I’ve watched the dear eat my cucumbers, but I get so many it doesn’t really matter. I always thought they were eating my tomatoes, too. Something sure is!
        I finally installed a light to come on when they approach. I’ve plugged in a radio to the light fixture so there’s noise to scare them as well. LoL
        Some days I think it’d be easier to just go to whole foods for my veggies!

        1. Diana Beebe Post author

          LOL! That is an ingenious way scare them off. 🙂 It may be easier to run to the market, but I bet the veggies wouldn’t taste as good. (I’m so spoiled now!)

  3. Rebecca Enzor

    That’s so pretty! We have a nice garden out back, but the same heat issues prevent us from planting many flowers in the front. I found that Sweet Williams (dianthus) does well in the heat, as long as you water them enough: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dianthus_barbatus

    We’ve also had luck with a wildflower mix from American Meadows, but they grow like, well, wildflowers and take over the bed 😉

    1. Diana Beebe Post author

      Good choices for flowers! I love dianthus and the varieties they have. LOL about the wild flowers.

      If you want to get crazy and plant veggies this summer, try different bush beans. Purple hull peas are really pretty and are tastier than green beans.

    1. Diana Beebe Post author

      You should! Radishes are really easy. Carrots are, too, but take patience. 🙂 Check with a local gardening center for plants that work best for your growing zone. Have fun with it.


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