Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Front-Yard Vegetable Gardens in Portland, OR

On the very warm afternoon of July 4, 2011, while staying at the Kennedy School, I took a walk in the neighbourhood looking for front-yard vegetable gardens. I came across many; these NE Portlanders have few compunctions about being creative in their front yards. My first stop was the well-kept Kennedy Community Garden, part of the original school grounds, but it was locked.
Now, on to the private gardens, many of which use boulevard land.
I liked the diagonal placement of these raised beds.Note the handy irrigation system for these blueberry bushes.
There were several types of trellises for vertical gardening.
For tomatoes--
Or simply use the house--
This gardener is just starting out with a new raised bed and has already eliminated the grass--
"Growing" Christmas lights on the arch in this front yard used expansively for vegetables--
Raised beds are everywhere. These people have at least 3--
This garden has used re-purposed lumber to build a grouping of 4 raised beds, each with 2 levels, a very clever and pleasing design.
Like Vancouver, Portland can have some cool weather, so the tomatoes in this hoop house may do quite well.I call this a "horse tank", but there's probably a better name--Are they forgetting to mow? I think they're growing these little plots of white and purple clover on purpose.
Portland does an interesting thing with its sidewalk dates, giving both the original date and the date of the newest sidewalk. Many of the houses were old; others were post World War II. Although Portland is a city where many people want to live, the economy is different from Vancouver's, and I didn't see any demolitions.


Oregon Coast Gardener said...

I used to live near the Kennedy School, in the early 90s. The woman who owned our house is an energetic gardener, ahead of her time... growing lots of food and herbs in the "parking strip" out front. Think her vision shocked and inspired many folks in Irvington.

Melody said...

Ive always wanted to do this, and will have the time next summer, but what about potential vandalism?

Janice Kreider said...

Vandalism could be a problem, but I don't hear of much going on. Community gardens might be more susceptible because there are so many vegetables concentrated in one area. A point to consider is how many people walk by your home. I have 3 blueberry bushes within handy reach of the sidewalk, and I doubt any berries have been picked; if some do, I am open to that.