My name is Kathleen Porter. I’m a wife, a mother to 6 great kids ages 14-4 whom I homeschool and an urban gardener. My hobbies include hiking as a family, visiting the “off the beaten path” gems of Idaho, soaking in hot springs, and hosting dinners with friends and family. My husband and I also enjoy going to the Big Island to enjoy the warm sun and marvel at the lush farms!

I started gardening in 2007 on our apartment patio with tomatoes, peppers, and even a passionfruit vine! We now own a home on a regular city lot in west Boise where we grow peaches, apricots, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, grapes, pears, apples, rhubarb and have 6 beds of all sizes to grow vegetables – all while leaving plenty of room for the kids to play. I believe that everyone can garden, no matter their living situation and I’d love to walk alongside you to maximize your spaces growing potential.

My Why

When we bought our home in 2016, I felt the desire to make our yard an edible landscape for our family, specifically for our six children.  I want our kids to be able to roam the yard and taste all the sweet and crunchy morsels that our yard provides!  

As a family, we often hike in the Boise foothills and while doing so, we stop along the trails to snack on the numerous currant bushes.  We also found old homesteads in the hills and pick the plums and apples that are still producing on those 100 year old trees.  We get weird looks because most people are taught that if there is a wild berry, and its not a blackberry, then its poisonous.  As I know that can be true, we take the time to identify the edibles and to teach our children.  My husband and I make sure that our children notice the world around them and they are rewarded with natural sweet treats because of it.

As a country,  I know that most people have lost the connection to where their food comes from.  It doesn’t have to come from the supermarket, it can come from your yard.  I also know that there is a movement to reclaim the green space of perfectly manicured lawn and instead create a beautiful, productive and diverse edible landscape! I agree with this and believe if you are watering your yard, then it should be giving something back to your family. 

Fast forward to now, I want to share my passion for this through my garden consulting/coaching, planning and maintenance business: Boise Backyard Gardens. 

I don’t claim to have it all figured out, but I know that everyone romanticizes about growing their own food to some degree but they don’t know where to start, they don’t have the confidence or they think that they don’t have the space.  I want to be able to help you figure out your space, draw up a plan, and help you get started on your journey.  I’m confident that everyone can grow something!  

Having a garden doesn’t mean that you need a huge dedicated “garden space.”  Using intensive planting and companion planting, you can have a diverse and productive garden in a very small space.  You can also plant edibles throughout your existing landscaping!  

If you have kids, a garden is a great way to teach them where food comes from.  They will love watching the process of seeds growing and I can almost bet that they will take a little nibble of lettuce leaves even if they aren’t “salad eaters”.  Our kids love seeing the first red strawberry or pulling up the first carrot of the season!