My front yard is like our spare room. It’s the last place I bother to worry about, as far as appearance goes. We’re mostly in our back yard anyway, and our front yard is too shady to grow anything so I’ve almost given up on it. Until now, the front window box has mostly functioned as a neighbourhood kitty litter. When we first moved in, I planted greenery and some flowers in the box, but because it gets almost no sunlight and the overhang prevents rain water from reaching the bed, it was a miserable failure.
Then my friend, Shanon, suggested I plant something edible and shade tolerant, like salad greens, assuming (correctly) I would be more interested in watering something I could eat, rather than just look at.
She was right, I watered them faithfully but I was still worried the plants wouldn’t thrive; not for lack of moisture, but lack of light. They are shaded by the house and the surrounding evergreens almost the entire day.
To my surprise, and delight, it turns out that swiss chard, cilantro, arugula and lettuce all do just fine in cold weather, under a shady overhang. (The thermometer has been dipping below zero for quite some time now.)
Now the next challenge is getting the chard and arugula down my sweet children’s throats.
The kids didn’t touch these. Once Susanna found out it was arugula, instead of lettuce, they didn’t stand a chance. Also, twenty seven seconds after I took the above photo a smoothie splattered all over our floor and walls, a glass broke, and tempers flared… (‘lest you think our day was one grand hors d’oeuvre party.)
Anyway, it is nice to go into the colder weather with some token food production and recent memory of growth.
Be well, and good luck finding your own local end-of-season greens!