Living in the suburbs, even with renting garden plots from the park district, we aren't able to grow enough food to feed our family completely, though we do plant quite a bit and freeze and can our produce as well. And of course, the place in the yard that gets the most sun happens to be the front of the house. So even though I'd like to take advantage of that area, I do need to try and limit it to decorative vegetable plants if possible - sweet potatoes that can double as decorative ground cover, and others that I can plant among the perennials and bushes. And perennial veggies that do double duty would be ideal, like asparagus once I get the whole area prepared. I've also grown basil in among my deck planters.
Our soil does have quite a bit of lime, so I'd have to constantly be amending it in order to grow blueberry bushes, though I'd like to give it a try. When planting bushes or trees in landscape, I've tried to limit it to plants that will give something back, either to me or the wildlife in my yard, rather than just be decorative, since space limits the amounts I can plant.
Not sure what type of place your mother is moving to or how much room she will have for beds. Raised beds are very decorative, and do make it easier to weed, plant, and pick than beds at ground level. Helps to cut down on weeds and grass roots invading the beds, and you can sit on the edges instead of having to stoop down. Many veggies can be grown in planters as well, either by themselves or planted among decorative plants, again making it easier to tend to. Both planters and raised beds also help if there hasn't been much rain, as the surrounding soil doesn't act like a sponge and draw the water away from your garden like in a regular bed.
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