Stefani Bittner, owner of Homestead Design Collective, talks with Hilary about how to create a beautiful and productive outdoor living space.
Photos from Stefani’s home garden:
SHOW NOTES + TERMS:
Key Design Elements:
Pick a focal point: Choose a permanent element such as a tree, arbor (the gorgeous metal arbor trellises in the header photo are from Terra Trellis) or pathway to anchor your site.
Create a gathering space - gardens are for living in!!
Provide structure to your site by incorporating perennial edibles and ornamentals, and evergreen ground covers.
Accessibility: It’s likely that your garden will be more successful if you can see it and access it easily.
Repetition: Repeating materials, colors, and textures throughout a landscape can help to integrate a variety of spaces.
Plants Discussed in This Episode:
Pineapple Guava, Feijoa sellowiana: Green skinned one-four inch oval fruit with yellow flesh. The pineapple guava fruit is sweet with the slight flavor of pineapple. Evergreen and hardy USDA Zones 8 - 10
Fuyu Persimmion: Self pollinating, so only one plant is needed to produce fruit, however, adding an additional Fuyu Persimmon Tree will drastically increase the size of your yield. Hardy in USDA Zones 7 - 10
Blueberry, Vaccinium x 'Sunshine Blue'
Evergreen Huckleberry, Vaccinium ovatum : Evergreen huckleberry is an adaptable, fruit bearing plant which grows well full sun to dappled shade. It will thrive in full shade, but may not flower or fruit. Provide plants with a well-drained or sandy soil. Once established it is drought tolerant, but flowering and fruiting is better with occasional watering during dry weather. Little pruning is needed to maintain a nice looking shrub. USDA Zones 7 to 9
Fig, Ficus carica: Figs are best grown in USDA Zones 8-10 in moist, well-drained soils in full sun to part shade.
Varieties we recommend:
‘Desert King’: Large green fruit with bright pink center. This versatile fig thrives in cool climates, producing a large early crop even in climates with milder summers. May set a second fall crop in warmer regions. The exceptionally large, green-skinned fruit has strawberry flesh of excellent quality
‘Brown Turkey’: Brownish purple fruit that ripen in late summer. In warmer climates this tree will produce two harvests, once in late spring and again in late summer. Highly adaptable, and often root hardy and prolific in zones 5 and 6 if planted in a sheltered location.
Yarrow, Achillea millefolium: Low maintenance flowering perennial. The flowers umbelliferous form attracts beneficial insects and are also well suited for both great fresh and dried bouquets.
Pathway, terracing and trellising inspiration from Stefani’s garden:
Books by Stefani Bittner:
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More about this weeks guest expert:
STEFANI BITTNER is the owner of Homestead Design Collective, a San Francisco Bay Area landscape design firm focused on creating beautiful gardens that provide harvest. Stefani is the co-author of The Beautiful Edible Garden and Harvest: Unexpected Projects Using 47 Extraordinary Garden Plants.
Her team offers a unique and sophisticated approach, using both organic farming and fine gardening skills, for people who want help creating aesthetically designed, organic edible gardens. Homestead provides design, installation, and full-service organic maintenance, harvesting, bee keeping, preserving, floristry, and composting services. Homestead is the design team behind the new Test Gardens for Sunset Magazine, the edible garden for Marin Art & Garden Center, and the community garden for Bay Meadows.
About the Host:
Hello, I’m Hilary Dahl. Outside of this podcast, my job is to help beginning and experienced growers create beautiful and productive gardens. I have the unique experience of working in on a wide range of projects, from small backyard garden plots to multi-acre vegetable farms. I also work in my own garden every day when I get home. This podcast is an opportunity to discuss seasonal garden topics and share the the joy of growing your own food.