The amount of money the average American is willing to spend on their yard is astonishing. The National Gardening Association reports that Americans spend 29-$45 billion dollars each year just on landscaping their yards. That’s a lot of money just to give a home curb appeal! If you crave a nice looking landscape, you should consider stocking yours with edible plants. This would make your landscaping costs a smart investment and it would add another dimension to your personal preparedness plans. Having quick access to edible plants could be an important key to your survival if the SHTF and contemporary food supplies are no longer effective. Let’s take a look at 10 edible plants that provide beautiful landscaping options.
Instead of planting shrubs, plant blueberry bushes instead. After a few years, the blueberry bushes grow tall enough that they’ll create a natural privacy barrier between you and your neighbors, and each summer, you’ll have a nice crop of berries you can use for making pies and smoothies. Since blueberries grow best in acidic soils, you will probably have to add some lime or sulfur to your ground before you plant your new blueberry bushes. Once you have a nice annual harvest, you can start freezing the extra berries or better yet, dehydrate them for a quick survival-friendly snack.
The Sarvis tree can grow up to 25 feet tall and produces an edible fruit that looks similar to a blueberry. The berries taste great when added to baked goods such as muffins. Although it’s not used in many landscaping projects, a good landscaper will look at your lawn and figure out a way that the sarvis tree can be used in a very attractive manner. With a little pruning and shaping, the Sarvis tree can be both ornamental and a good source of food.
There are several different types of passionflowers that grow in the United States. These beautiful plants can be used to add a splash of color to your landscape. The best variety is the Maypop (Purple Passionflower). Not only will the passionflower brighten your landscape, but you can also use it to create a juice that researchers have found can be used to treat both insomnia and anxiety. The juice has been as effective as some prescription drugs, and you can use it without worrying about the side effects connected to pharmaceuticals.
If you haven’t already incorporated rhubarb into your landscape, do it this year. The big leafy plants grow quickly and provide great groundcover. A single plant can live for 15 years or more, even in Northern areas that experience bitter cold winters. You can use the stalk of the rhubarb for pies, jams, and even in baked goods. Don’t worry if you have more rhubarb than you can use. It freezes well and you can give the extra to friends, neighbors, and family. They’ll love it as much as you do!
The Kousa Dogwood is a versatile plant that provides a nice tasty fruit. You can eat it raw or use it to make jam. This particular variation of the dogwood tree is a smart landscaping choice. It’s more disease resistant that the traditional flowering dogwood trees that people normally choose.
Cornelian Cherry Tree
This misnamed tree is actually a member of the dogwood family. It’s a great tree to have in your front yard. It’s very attractive and in you can use the fruit to make a fantastic jam. In Europe, people use the fruit to add flavor to vodka.
Most people have never heard of sunchokes before, which is a shame because they are a great! The fruit can be used like potatoes, but they store carbohydrates instead of starch, making them a great choice for anyone who has diabetes and can’t eat potatoes since the starch interferes with their insulin levels. Sunchokes produce very pretty yellow flowers. They are an aggressive plant, so you need to use care when planting them so that they don’t take over your landscape.
If you’re sensitive to glucose and you want an attractive landscape, you can’t go wrong with Amaranth. There are several different varieties of amaranth so you can use it to create a diverse landscape. This plant is edible and often used as a gluten free grain, and the plant also serves as an instant food you can use raw for salads or to feed livestock.
Bamboo is a prepper’s dream plant. It’s easy to grow, produces tender shoots that can be used as food, and if allowed to grow, can be used to create furniture, fences, and cabinetry. You do have to be careful when incorporating bamboo into your landscape since it can be invasive. You also have to watch that it doesn’t develop ergot, which is a fungus that can cause severe hallucinations and even death if consumed.
For hundreds of years, people have been relying on currants as both a food source and a decorative shrub, and there’s no reason you can’t do the same. You can use the berries from the currants in your landscape to make wine and jams. Before incorporating currants into your landscaping project, check with your local cooperative extension office and learn which species of currants are legal in your region. Some have been banned because they’re carriers for diseases that negatively impact the timber industry.
These are just 10 plants that make good options for an edible landscape. What are some other plants you’ve incorporated in your yard?