My name is Ryan Harvey, and I have been gardening with my wife, Kristen, and our Yorkie, Emmett, in Austin, Texas, zone 8b, for eight years. We focus primarily on edibles, perennials, native plants, and enjoying garden and wildlife views. It all started with a garden bed amidst dying grass, already dead soil, and invasive bamboo that threatened to take over our house. Years later, we have more than 100 trees, multiple vegetable beds, and countless native and adapted perennials on our one-sixth acre lot. Pathways connect the various outdoor rooms that we have built around our property, each of which has a seating area that we enjoy. National Wildlife Federation– Certified residence. Sharing our garden with others is one of our greatest joys, and we spend as much time in it as possible.
Birds, insects and other animals, including our banana-loving dogs, provide us with more than enough entertainment. Since most of our fruit bearing trees and shrubs are young, we are excited to begin harvesting this bounty in the years to come, of course sharing it with our outdoor wildlife friends.
A large, fragrant flower of Datura inoxia (zones 9–10 or as an annual) is supported by the magenta flowers of rock rose (Pavonia lasiopetalazones 7-9).
A gingko tree (Gingko BilobaZones 5-9) is dressed in gold for fall.
A monarch butterfly drinking nectar from a zinnia (Xenia Elegance ‘Will Rogers’, Annual).
The garden teems with life, providing beauty and food for its human and non-human inhabitants.
One of the Inhuman residents is Emmett, who is a huge fan of Kale.
Paths meander through garden beds, with thick mulch covering everything to conserve water and suppress weeds.
An unusual type of banana, Moses ‘Truly Tiny’ (Zones 8-11) is an extremely small version of the classic Cavendish banana you’re used to buying at the grocery store. The small size means it can be grown to produce fruit even in climates where you need it to overwinter indoors.
This delicious-looking salad was harvested entirely from garden, edible passionflowers (Passiflora incarnataZones 6-10) blooms that make it beautiful as well as delicious.
It is a lush and productive garden space.
If you want to see more from this garden, check out Ryan and Kristen’s Instagram: @theharveygarden
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