By Lizzi Brosseau
How to Make Your Yard Do More for You
Do you wish your landscape had more interest and variety? Are you looking for ways to turn your “bland”-scape into something that stands out, is rewarding to work on, and even… delicious? Foodscaping might be a great option for you!
Foodscaping is growing in popularity because of its “grow food, not lawn” ethos. Homeowners are turning to foodscapes to grow their own food, add more interest to their landscape, spend more time enjoying their yard, AND lower their water and grocery bills!
In this post, we’ll be talking about Foodscaping Utah, a local non-profit in Ogden, Utah. They empower homeowners to makeover their yards by growing their own food instead of lawn.
Denise Little and her sons in front of their partial foodscape.
What Is Foodscaping, Exactly?
You might have heard the term "foodscaping," but aren't exactly sure what it means. It's actually pretty simple! It means that you choose to plant veggies, herbs, and fruits in your yard instead of more traditional things, like grass and ornamental plants. Foodscaping follows a similar ethos to “grow food, not lawn” movement.
Depending on what you use your yard for, a foodscape can replace just part, or all, of your lawn with garden and flower beds. If you have kids who love running through the grass, then a partial foodscape of a side-yard might be best for you. But if you love to save money on the food you buy, maybe a full foodscape will help you cut some trips to the grocery store!
Foodscaping is really a win-win situation. If you foodscape, that means you can also EAT the plants that are growing in your yard, instead of just looking at them. This makes your yard much more productive, and tasty. When you grow your own food you will be surprised by how much more flavorful and fresh homegrown vegetables and fruit taste.
Another benefit of growing food instead of lawn? You'll likely use less water. For example, Foodscaping Utah founders, John and Holly Trimble, had a 25% water savings after installing their full foodscape. Edibles like veggies and herbs cover less “ground” than lawn does. As we learned in our Localscaping blog post, installing drip irrigation — which saves more water than overhead sprinklers — is optimal for individual plants, but not for a lawn. That makes foodscaping a great option for those looking to save on their water bill.
Learn more about Localscaping: https://www.kued.org/modern-gardener/stories/localscapes-landscaping-for-where-you-live
However, foodscaping may not be for everyone. Having a wide-open lawn has its uses, and maintaining a garden might not be feasible for some homeowners. But if you think you have a portion of your yard that isn’t being used and needs a facelift, foodscaping is a great option!
Denise Little's side yard, which they converted to a foodscape in 2018.
Building Community Through Foodscaping
Another benefit of foodscaping is that it provides more opportunities to get to know your neighbors. If you are outside more often, you'll see your neighbors more! Growing that connection to their neighborhood was one of the first benefits that Foodscaping Utah founders, John and Holly Trimble, mentioned to us in our research for this video. Foodscaping their yard created a conversation piece for the neighborhood. Everyone wanted to know why and how they did it.
In fact, their neighbors were so interested in their foodscape, they asked John and Holly to help them foodscape a portion of their yard in 2018. Watch the video below to see more from John and Holly, and other homeowners who have foodscaped!