Potager Garden

A potager garden is the French counterpart to the English kitchen garden and the American victory garden

(pronounce it like 'pot-a-sheh')

A potager garden should be designed to be both beautiful to look at, as well as productive, by planting useful plants, edible and cut flowers, herbs and vegetables.
By adding trellises, arbors and statuary, you can create an attractive outdoor room.

Themed potager gardens

Salsa Garden:
Plant tomatoes, chilies, cilantro, patio key lime tree, green onions
Salad Bar Garden:
Plant cherry tomatoes, bell peppers, lettuce, pineapple sage, nasturtium
Herb Garden (Healing Garden):
Plant parsley, garlic chives, oregano, thyme, rosemary, dill, fennel, Mex. Tarragon, mints, lemon grass
Potpourri Garden:
plant lavender, lemon verbena, roses, mints

Add edible flowers:
Plant borage, chives, johnny-jump-ups, nasturtium, pansy, rose, violet, sage, tarragon

Design a potager garden

A potager garden where herbs and flowers grow together is becoming more popular than the traditional row gardening.
Design on paper a carefree style of a cottage garden or formal as a knot garden of any size.
Think about combining plants that will create patterns of color, like a square of red leaf lettuce with a green basil plant in the middle.
Consider spread and height of each plant, so the beds don't get overgrown.

Tomatoes - 18" to 3'
Peppers - 12"
Lettuce - 6"
Eggplant - 8"
Celery - 8"Dwarf Nasturtium - 12"
Dwarf Zinnia - 12"
Basil – 8”
Parsley – 12”
Sage – 10”
Chives – 10”
Thyme – 6”
Oregano – 8”
Cilantro – 6”

What you need:

  •  Pick a well drained area, create raised beds with boards or brick. or use an old children's sandbox, or even large pots or planters on a balcony.

  • good composted soil for planting

  • Stepping stones for paths, trellis, obelisk and arbor

  • Fountain or birdbath

  • Starter plants and seeds

  • Your potager garden should receive at least 6 hours sunshine and be close to a watering source.

  • A small compost is certainly beneficial

Plant suggestions:

Climbing edibles
cucumbers, pole beans, Malabar spinach, tomatoes. Use a decorative Obelisk
mint, sweet potatoes, thyme, creeping rosemary
Border plants
bush beans, artichoke, chives, okra, basil, borage, parsley, pepper sage
Shrub sized plants
blueberry, citrus, guava, roses, ginger, lemon grass
On a wall train a fruiting tree in espalier fashion

Some Vegetables for Central Florida:

January, start from seeds:
Peas, mustard greens, carrots, radishes, calandula, nasturtium, nicotina, sweet pea, verbena
Keep tomatoes and other plants potted until danger of frost is past before planting in ground.
February, start from seeds:
Kale, spinach, lettuce, morning glory, rudbeckia, sunflower, zinnia, marigold
March, start from seeds:
Green beans, cucumber, eggplants
After danger of frost, plant tomatoes, peppers, onions, okra, basil, oregano, dill, parsley