George Clerk/istockphoto


The problem with gardening is that it takes a lot of work. There is some digging involved and some bending over. You might also have to oversee some crow-scaring. There may even come a time when you have to make labels for the different plants. That could take all day if you get slightly distracted.

If you've gone lackadaisically green, then you might find that regular gardening is too much work. You have to keep those plants alive, find non-chemical ways of dealing with weeds and insects, save water and generally care about things.

But what if I told you that there was a way to create a garden with little fuss and it would provide you with a few nourishing, local treats? Would you be interested? Well, there is. It's called a weed garden, and it is a great way to good local food. Plus, your neighbors will hate it!

A weed garden does take some work but not an excessive amount. Weeds, for the most part, will kill the other plants that get into their territory. They are also well-adapted to surviving against the odds. If you space off your gardening chores for a few days, your weed garden still be there, lousy with weeds as you intended.

How to Grow a Weed Garden

Paraphrased from the University of Vermont:

Weeds thrive in sunny locations. Prepare your patch of land as you would a regular garden.

Keep your weed patch away from the property line and all plants that are valuable to you.

Create a one-foot border of fallow ground around your weed patch. Stones should be placed around the edge of the weed garden. The stones should go a feet deep into the ground to prevent the weed's root system from getting out and should stick out of the ground by two inches. Make sure the stone are abutted up against each other as to not let the tiniest of root through.

To keep your weed population in check, cut them by half after they flower. Then mulch desirable weeds. Or weed your weed garden.

Desirable Weeds

Desirable weeds are the ones you can harvest and use. Here's a list from You Grow Girl!

- Amaranth

- Chickweed

- Lambsquarter

- Mallow

- Purslane

- Burdock

- Garlic

- Queen Anne's Lace

- Dandelions

- Sheep Sorrel

- Stinging Nettle

- Yellow Dock

For a List of Recipes and Uses, Check out You Grow Girl!