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garden design
Published March 2, 2023 by Nicole Burke

Our Top 10 Favorite Kitchen Garden Designs

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garden location
garden design
garden inspiration
garden layout
raised kitchen garden
kitchen garden
Our Top 10 Favorite Gardenary Garden Designs

Raised-Bed Kitchen Garden Design Inspiration

Have you ever seen a raised bed kitchen garden and instantly thought, Wow!?

If so, maybe it was because of the beautiful, lush plants growing there, climbing toward the sky on a trellis or draping elegantly over the side of the bed.

Maybe it was the harmony between the materials for the raised beds, the gravel walkways, and the trellis.

Maybe it came down to the way the garden perfectly mirrored the style of the home.

Whatever the reason, I'm willing to bet that none of those aspects of the kitchen garden would have impressed you if the overall design weren't just right.

When I first started working as a garden consultant, I thought that garden design was just figuring out the best spot to place a wooden box. Now, I know that there are dozens of ways to plot out your kitchen garden space, including our six most classic and tested layout options.

Here are our ten absolute favorite garden designs from Gardenary and Rooted Garden ever. In each of these kitchen gardens, the design elements combine to create a flawless fusion of both form and function.

Our favorite border gardens

L-shaped border garden

Modern L-Shaped Border Garden

This border garden maximizes growing space while also maintaining a large area of the backyard for outdoor seating and activities. Border gardens are our most popular layouts, mostly because they can fit naturally into almost any space and can make the most of previously underutilized space.

This garden runs along a fence and outdoor patio, but you can also position a border garden next to a house, driveway, or perimeter of your property.

Shop these pillar obelisk trellises

These powder-coated metal trellises are perfect for vining plants like tomatoes, cucumbers, pole beans, and peas.

side yard raised garden bed

Space-Saving Side Yard Raised Garden

There's nothing particularly standout about this garden space. It features three simple cedar raised beds and trellises made of cattle panels. What we love about it is how it makes the most of a small side yard that would otherwise serve little purpose.

Herbs and leafy greens grow along the wall that receives less sun, while fruiting plants grow along the fence, the side that receives more natural light.

So many of us have an awkward strip like this in our backyards. Or we have an apartment balcony that we think doesn't get enough sun for a garden. This kitchen garden proves that you can work with what you got to create a beautiful and productive space.

Pre-order my new book

My second book (out April 18, 2023) delves into my system for growing your gardening skills with your plants. Match the type of plants you grow to your current resources: your sunlight, your tending time, and your space. I'll teach you how it's possible to have some type of garden no matter where you live.

Our favorite twin gardens

raised corten beds shaped like half-moons

Unique Raised Half-Moon Beds

You might recognize this kitchen garden from my book, Kitchen Garden Revival. I love the beauty of these Corten raised beds and the lush edible jungle growing within them so much that I featured them throughout the book.

The two arch trellises marry the raised beds and give plenty of vertical space for vining vegetables (like warm season cucumbers and tomatoes and cool season beans and peas) to grow. The material of the custom half-moon shaped beds (Corten steel) pulls all the warm richness from the fence to create a welcoming space filled with beautiful swiss chard and kale. 

Discover why we love Corten steel for kitchen gardens.

Beautiful Twin Gardens

Elegant Twin Gardens

This garden takes full advantage of a sunny space along the driveway and near a side-access door from the kitchen—perfect for quick leaf and fruit harvests as you're prepping a meal. The location also allows the family to see their beautiful space each time they leave and return home.

The twin raised beds are powder coated for versatility and durability, and the gray hue coordinates with the exterior trim details of the home. The thin profile of a metal bed is ideal for narrow garden spaces or for gardeners who prefer a more modern look.

Shop Gardenary trellises

Our favorite garden trio

Stone Garden Trio

Tranquil Stone Garden Trio

My mother, an interior decorator, swears by arranging things in threes, and I have definitely come to agree with her on this one.

This garden features three stone beds and three black, powder-coated metal obelisk trellises in each bed. The longevity of stone gardens surpasses any other type of material and is truly an investment in your home and its hardscaping.

I love how a central citrus tree completes this tranquil space.

Learn more about this peaceful stone garden trio.

Our favorite keyhole garden

keyhole garden design

Clever Keyhole Garden

Keyhole gardens maximize production capabilities by utilizing all available space for growing and tending.

The traditional keyhole garden is actually round with one section removed for access to the bed and a compost pile in the center. We've taken the liberty of making some modifications for an updated and inviting urban vegetable garden. 

This keyhole garden is one of our warmest and most inviting with its steel beds and endless edges, perfect for easy tending and harvesting. 

Our favorite four-garden classics

cedar four-garden classic

French Four-Garden Classic

This kitchen garden, which mirrors the timeless and relaxed French countryside architecture of the home, is located on the corner in a neighborhood that's busy with walkers and constant activity. As people pass by, they often peer through the fence to see what's growing in this beautiful and productive space. A garden like this is a conversation starter and, we hope, inspiration for other gardeners looking to improve their growing capabilities.

Explore this four-garden classic further.

cedar raised bed four-garden classic

Timeless Four-Garden Classic

A four-garden classic is my favorite layout. Like four walls to a room, there's something about standing inside four raised garden beds that feels like an escape from the ordinary. This garden uses the timeless simplicity of untreated cedar boards and two modern arch trellises to tie the space together with the soft tones of the brick home.

Shop Gardenary raised bed kits

Our favorite formal potagers

stucco and stained wood raised bed formal potager

Stunning Stucco and Stained Wood Formal Potager

Never has a garden felt more like it was always a part of the home's architecture than with this stucco raised bed garden design. With more than 250 square feet of raised bed space, this is one of our largest designs yet.

This garden is what I call a formal potager. Even though potager just means kitchen garden in French, I use the word to describe spaces that go beyond a few raised beds. We’re talking spaces that include additional features like fountains, fruit trees, and seating areas.

Like the other formal potagers I’ve designed with Rooted Garden, this garden space includes four L-shaped beds around a central focal point, which, in this case, is the gorgeous ceramic fountain. The effect that's created makes you feel as though you're standing inside a special enclosure.

Read more about this stucco raised bed garden design or explore other formal potagers designed by Rooted Garden.

corten formal potager

Down-to-Earth Corten Formal Potager

Formal potagers include garden beds with unique angles and curves, and the raised beds work together to create an outdoor room, a getaway at home, something akin to your own edible oasis. In this space, the four L-shaped beds allow the gardener to approach the beds both from the outside and the inside of each corner of the garden, where there’s always something to pick and enjoy.

If you’re looking for a raised garden material so durable it'll last for decades but take up the least amount of space, steel garden beds, with their thin edges and small footprint, are the perfect fit. Corten steel provides a unique blend of formal yet earthy to this incredible garden space.

raised bed garden design

Design Your Dream Garden with Gardenary

Choosing the best layout for your own home kitchen garden—one that maximizes your growing space and suits your landscape and home—can be both thrilling and intimidating at the same time.

Work with a Gardenary-trained professional designer to have your kitchen garden expertly planned, designed, and built with confidence. Your designer will guide you through every step of the way—including selecting the best location and style for your garden—so that you end up with a beautiful and productive hardscaping piece in your outdoor space.

Our experienced designers are ready to help you today. Get started with your designer.

If you're more of a DIY'er, start a free trial of Gardenary 365 to watch our brand new online garden design course, Build Your Dream Garden. In this course, I walk you through how to determine the best location for your garden, how to decide on design elements, how to source your materials, and so much more.

Introducing Gardenary 365's Newest Online Course

Design Your Dream Garden

In this course you'll learn how to put your thoughts and dreams onto paper, look at your space and find the ideal location, create a layout that allows you to walk into your space and enjoy your garden, lay out your garden design so you maximize production, find resources and source materials, build and install raised beds, and create the best soil and irrigation system. By the end of this course, your dream garden will be out of your head and in your backyard.

Our Top 10 Favorite Kitchen Garden Designs