A pizza garden is a fun way to entertain children while teaching them the importance of growing food and the garden-to-table philosophy. Most kids love pizza, so engaging them in selecting, planting and caring for the ingredients is educational as well as fun. Planting your garden in a pizza-shaped layout cranks up the fun factor even more. If pizza isn’t your thing, you and your family can choose from any number of themed planting ideas or even create your own.
Plant Species to Include in Your Pizza Garden
The usual suspects for pizza-making include tomatoes, onions, peppers and herbs. Traditional Italian herbs include oregano, basil and parsley. If you prefer other veggies or herbs, add those or switch them out for some you aren’t wild about. Mix Roma tomatoes with golden jubilee, cherry or dwarf varieties, or even heirloom species. Use sweet bell peppers and mix in some hotter varieties for a more caliente pizza. Many of your pizza plantings can be started from seed, which means you can begin before the warm growing season officially arrives.
Add a Fun Layout and Follow Your Progress
Although you can plant your pizza garden in any location (including raised beds and containers), some gardeners like to create even more family fun by laying out the garden in a pizza shape. Mark out a 6- or 7-foot-diameter circle and divide it into six “slices” using decorative stones, strips of wood trim or plastic edging. Place the tomato plants in one wedge, the basil in the next and so on. Have the kids take pictures of the progress and a final photo of the newly finished garden. As it takes hold and begins to grow, have them document the progress. Later, they can create a flip book or time-lapse video of their creation.
Other Themed Garden Ideas
If pizza isn’t a favorite at your house, you can try other themes. Fresh salsa is healthy and fun to make, using homegrown tomatoes, cilantro, onions and jalapenos. Make it salsa verde by planting tomatillos instead of tomatoes, or up the spice level by using a more intense type of chili. If healthy Mediterranean cuisine is more to your liking, use Roma tomatoes and eggplant. Add fragrant Mediterranean herbs like sage, thyme, Greek oregano and lavender. You can even extend the theme throughout your yard with ornamental plants like the skyrocket juniper, which boasts low water use and cold weather hardiness, and the fuzzy lamb’s ear ground cover, also perfect for the northern Utah climate.
Millcreek Gardens can help you get started with your themed garden. Serving Salt Lake City and the surrounding communities since 1955, their experienced customer service team can answer any questions and help you select the perfect plants to make your pizza garden a tasty success.