I really want to plant along the fenceline of my dog's run but I am having trouble finding any decent recommendations. I know that this is one of the most in tune communities on such things, so I thought I'd see if anyone had a metaphorical bone to toss me here.
I would prefer something that will eventually yield edibles, but That is a secondary concern to simply having something a bit more controlled than the mess that usually pops up over summer.
I am in West Indiana, Zone 6a, on a suburban lot. the dog's fenceline faces South. (runs horizontally E-W)
Have you tested the actual pH? You that will tell you a lot about what goes next. Also, is there anything growing there now? If you can identify any plants in the spot you want to plant in, it can give you some indication of what the soil condition is without testing it.
As to acid-loving food producers, I doubt you'd want to plant potatoes, as they would get in direct contact with the dog urine, but blueberries require really acidic soil. I would suggest trying a blueberry guild, and mulch the ground with rameal wood chips (woodchips from branches less than 3" in diameter have less hard-to-break-down lignin, and more nutrient resources already in plant food form). In the event that your soil isn't acidic enough (don't laugh, it's possible), I like to collect christmas trees when people put them out at curbside. In my situation (I have dogs too) the scent of them masks any fresh urine scent, and the biological environment encourages rapid break-down.
Also, you might have a lot of nitrogen due to all the urine (likely, in fact). Nettles like nitrogen, and are also edible, though I'd make sure that you isolate the plants themselves from the "stream" if you intend to eat them.
Let us know how it goes.
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
-Robert A. Heinlein
Location: Terre Haute, IN
posted 7 years ago
There is a Sumac species that has been coming up every year fairly strongly along the fence line. Yes, I do know that they produce fruit, but they will be too large for the area, and I have some issues w keeping the kids out of the very stain-y berries.
I have considered blueberries. Nettles are a great suggestion, thanks for that.
I will be purchasing a new soil tester very soon, so I will provide more comprehensive ph info when I can.