Artisan House, a combination market and restaurant/bar on the corner of 6th and Main Street, serves delicious, fresh food all day long, offering organic produce, artisanal wines and small-farm dairy products. The restaurant menu sports all the eye-catching entrees, sandwiches, soups, and fresh salads you could wish for. There were plans for a roof-top garden, but when that fell through, the owners asked Gardenerd to transform their patio into an edible experience for customers.
When we visited Artisan House, we observed that the patio didn’t get much sunlight, so we decided to focus mostly on growing herbs and greens, which can tolerate lower-light conditions. To supplement, we added vertical growing towers with full-spectrum lighting to grow crops that require more sunlight.
The patio is now surrounded by perennial and seasonal herbs in low planters. The herbs will be used in the kitchen as needed, and replaced seasonally to suit Chef Manny’s needs.
We added organic soil to each planter to keep the herbs healthy through the growing season. Rosemary, thyme and lemon thyme, cilantro, peppermint, spearmint, and both flat and curly parsley adorn the patio to encompass guests in a fragrant food experience.
The north side of the building had empty planters under each window that needed some attention. We installed California native plants including Coral Bells (heuchera) and Douglas Irises along with shade tolerant Snake Plant (sansevieria) for color and texture.
After the 6 1/2 hour installation, the place looked brand new. Passers-by stopped to ask what we were planting, and were very excited to have edibles featured so prominently at the restaurant. The new restaurant garden is a green oasis in the center of a concrete jungle.
Even if the garden doesn’t supply all of the restaurant’s produce, it will be able to keep the chef in fresh herbs year-round. For everything else, there is always wine.
Another victory for small space gardening. We hope this new garden is an inspiration for your own small space. Plant in every nook and cranny, make the most of your patio, go vertical, and grow something!