Taste of Italy Ravioli Garden

Attention, pasta lovers: It's time to breathe new life into a classic dish with help from your garden.

Ravioli don't grow on trees … but the best-tasting homemade ravioli ingredients do grow in gardens! Transport your taste buds to Italy—and go beyond the usual mozzarella and ground beef—by growing a Ravioli Garden full of fresh veggie and herb ingredients, perfect for layering between sheets of homemade pasta.

These instructions are for planting in a 4' x 6' raised bed, but you can adjust for a smaller bed by following the spacing guidelines. Whatever the size, be sure to fill it with premium-quality soil designed for raised beds, like Miracle-Gro® Raised Bed Soil. If you don't have lots of space, use containers to grow a mini Ravioli Garden with your favorite plants.

What You'll Need

  • The following herb and veggie starter plants, like these choices from Bonnie Plants:
    • 1 tomato plant (choose an early-producing variety like Celebrity or Tidy Rose)
    • 1 zucchini plant
    • 8 onion slips (like Georgia Sweet or Sweet Red)
    • 1 lemon balm plant
    • 1 sweet basil plant
    • 1 sweet mint plant
    • 2 spinach plants
  • Trowel
  • Watering can or hose
  • 1 cage-style plant support
  • 1 10"-12" clay pot with drainage hole

Plant Your Ravioli Garden

Use this planting plan as your guide to what goes, and grows, where in your Ravioli Garden. Pay special attention to the distance between plants: Your garden may look small and sparse now, but it will be bursting—above and below ground—in just a few weeks.

Area 1: Plant your tomato plant about 12” from the corner of the bed. Surround it with a wire cage now for support—it will need it to help hold up its heavy fruit.

Area 2: Plant your onion slips 6” apart in two rows, about 24” long.

Area 3:  Plant the sweet mint in the clay pot, filled with Miracle-Gro® Potting Mix, then bury it up to its rim in the corner of the raised bed. (The pot will keep the mint from spreading.) Moving toward the back of the bed, plant your lemon balm plant about 24” from the submerged pot and 6”-8” from the side of the bed. As they grow, both plants will spread and overflow the bed at the side and corner.

Area 4: Plant your zucchini plant about 18” in from the far corner of the bed, behind your onions, where it will have lots of room to grow. Don’t be surprised when it crawls its way up, down, and even over the edge of the bed!

Area 5: Put your sweet basil and spinach plants in the remaining space, behind the lemon balm and about 6” from the side of the bed. Moving toward the back of the bed, plant the sweet basil about 18” away from the lemon balm, leave about 12”, then plant your spinach plants about 12” apart.

Give your new plants a thorough watering, then tend to them while they grow. Be sure to feed them with Miracle-Gro® Water Soluble All Purpose Plant Food every one to two weeks. You’ll replenish nutrients in the soil while you water—no extra work needed.

Mix & Match Your Ravioli Flavors

Chop, slice, or dice your fresh-grown ingredients, and you’re just minutes away from garden-fresh, handmade ravioli! Prepare them however you wish—fresh, sautéed, caramelized, or grilled— then add to soft cheeses, mashed potatoes, ground sausage, and more. You can follow your favorite recipe or invent new combinations of veggie and herb flavors to suit whatever you’re craving, like:

  • Goat cheese, ricotta, and mint
  • Spinach, ricotta, and a splash of white wine
  • Ground turkey, diced zucchini, garlic, and Parmesan
  • Caramelized onions, portobello mushrooms, and Romano

Tuck spoonfuls of your mixture inside sheets of fresh pasta, seal, and boil until al denté (still firm, but tender). Then top with butter, olive oil, or your favorite sauce—you can even make your own pomodoro or marinara with your home-grown tomatoes and basil. Garnish with a few sprigs of fresh herbs for pasta perfection