Let’s Create an Asian-American Theme Garden
Asian cultures are closely related to nature and always try and capture its heart and spirit by incorporating it into daily life. Asians are known as the masters in the art of gardening in small courtyards. The Asian-American thematic garden is perfect for the ones who love relishing home-grown produce.
Asian-American Theme Gardens contain stir-fry type plants introduced to the United States by Asians.
Ugaoo tip: While using fresh greens as salad mixes, use leaves that exude mild flavors like the lettuce or endive. Use sharp or pungent leaves such as basil, coriander, parsley, and mustards only as an accent.
Steps to Planning a Theme Garden
- Determine the type of theme garden you would like. Here, we want an Asian American Garden.
- Determine the location and size of the garden. Choose an area that receives at least 6-hours of full sunlight daily and is close to a water source.
- Test your soil.
- Amend the soil accordingly. Use a tiller, work in a 3-inch layer of organic matter (peat moss, organic manure, rotted compost, etc.) to improve the soil structure.
- The shape of your garden can be a 4’x4’ square area or whatever fits into your landscape scheme!
Select plants from the list of recommended varieties:
Grow warm-season vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, and herbs.
Weed, water, fertilize and harvest on a weekly basis throughout the growing season.
Enjoy abundant of fresh vegetables and herbs.
Pak Choi: A traditional stir-fry veggie. Separate the leaves from stem and chop into 2-inch wide diagonal chunks. Tastes good when used raw in salads.
Red Mustard: Mix tender Red Mustard leaves with other salad greens or sprinkle flowers on sandwiches.
Snap Peas: Plant early in spring when temperatures are cold. Harvest daily.
‘Thai’ Basil: The herb exudes warm spicy flavor and is native of Africa and Asia. Pick leaves when young for best taste.
Mizspoona: Use this herb to add a spicy bite to salads or stir-fry dishes.
Others: Asian red kale, radish, mizuna, eggplant, coriander, fresh endive, and various lettuce varieties.
Reference: Agricultural Extension Service The University of Tennessee