Kitchen Garden

The traditional kitchen garden, also known as a potager (in French, jardin potager) or in Scotland a kailyard,[1] is a space separate from the rest of the residential garden – the ornamental plants and lawn areas. Most vegetable gardens are still miniature versions of old family farm plots, but the kitchen garden is different not only in its history, but also its design.

The kitchen garden may serve as the central feature of an ornamental, all-season fruits, but it is often also a structured garden space with a design based on repetitive geometric patterns.

The kitchen garden has year-round visual appeal and can incorporate permanent annuals.

Potager garden

A potager is a edible and non-edible) and herbs are planted with the vegetables to enhance the garden’s beauty. The goal is to make the function of providing food aesthetically pleasing.

Plants are chosen as much for their functionality as for their color and form. Many are trained to grow upward. A well-designed potager can provide food, as well as cut flowers and herbs for the home with very little maintenance. Potagers can disguise their function of providing for a home in a wide array of forms—from the carefree style of the knot garden.

Vegetable garden

A vegetable garden (also known as a vegetable patch or vegetable plot) is a garden that exists to grow vegetables and other plants useful for human consumption, in contrast to a victory garden” which provided food and thus freed resources for the war effort.

With worsening economic conditions and increased interest in organic and sustainable living, many people are turning to vegetable gardening as a supplement to their family’s Organic horticulture, or organic gardening, has become increasingly popular for the modern home gardener.

There are many types of vegetable gardens. The potager, a garden in which vegetables, herbs and flowers are grown together, has become more popular than the more traditional rows or blocks.

Herb garden

The herb garden is often a separate space in the garden, devoted to growing a specific group of plants known as knot garden.

Herb gardens may be purely functional or they may include a blend of functional and ornamental plants. The herbs are usually used to flavour food in physic garden), among others.

A kitchen garden can be created by planting different herbs in pots or containers, with the added benefit of mobility. Although not all herbs thrive in pots or containers, some herbs do better than others. Mint is an example of a herb that is advisable to keep in a container or it will take over the whole garden.[2]

Some popular culinary herbs in temperate climates are to a large extent still the same as in the medieval period.

Herbs often have multiple uses. For example, mint may be used for cooking, tea, and pest control. Examples of herbs and their uses (not intended to be complete):

  • Annual culinary herbs: summer savory
  • Perennial culinary herbs: tarragon
  • Herbs used for potpourri: lemon verbena
  • Herbs used for tea: hibiscus
  • Herbs used for other purposes: feverfew for pest control in the garden.

Witches’ garden

A witches’ garden is an herb garden specifically designed and used for the cultivation of herbs, for culinary, medicinal and/or spiritual purposes. Herbal baths, the making of incense, tied in bundles for rituals or prayers, or placed in charms are just some of the ways herbs can be used for spiritual purposes.

Herb gardens developed from the general gardens of the monks and nuns acquired this medical knowledge and grew the necessary herbs in specialized gardens. Later, according to certain views, some monks and nuns, in fear of losing their power over the common people, called wise women and healers “witches” and “evil” for the same healing powers which had earned them respect and honor in earlier centuries.

Typical plants found within a witches’ garden are: mother nature and become one with the Earth.



  1. ^ Scots “kailyaird” or “kailyard”, means a small cabbage patch (see kale) or kitchen garden, usually adjacent to a cottage.–Cuddon, J. A. (1977) A Dictionary of Literary Terms. London: André Deutsch; p. 343.
  2. ^ “Mint and the Home Vegetable Garden”. Retrieved 2012-05-19.

Further reading

  • Bartley, Jennifer R. (2006). Designing the New Kitchen Garden: An American Potager Handbook. Portland: Timber Press. ISBN 978-0-88192-772-6.
  • Davies, Jennifer (1987). The Victorian Kitchen Garden. London: BBC Books. ISBN 978-0-563-20442-8.
  • M. D. (1901) “Formation of the Fruit and Kitchen Garden”, in: Thompson, Robert The Gardener’s Assistant; new edition, revised … under the direction and general editorship of William Watson. Vol. IV, pp. 1-32. London: Gresham Publishing Company.
  • Shewell-Cooper, W. E. (1947) The A.B.C. of Vegetable Gardening London: English Universities Press (first published 1937).
  • Wilson, C. A. (ed.) (1998). The Country House Kitchen Garden 1600-1950: How Produce Was Grown and How it Was Used. Sutton Publishing. ISBN 978-0-7509-1423-9.

External links

  • Kitchen Gardeners International: A nonprofit group promoting kitchen gardens worldwide
  • Walled Kitchen Gardens Network
  • Kitchen Gardens, Science Tracer Bullet, Library of Congress
  • The History of Kitchen Gardens in America, Cornell University, Mann Library
  • Herb Society of America
  • National Herb Garden, United States National Arboretum
  • Medicinal Herb Garden, University of Washington, USA
  • Woodblocx Raised Bed & Planter Gardening Kits
  • Vegetable Gardens
  • Herbalist Guide

This article uses material from the Wikipedia article Kitchen Garden, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

Be Sociable, Share!