An intriguing garden idea: Create a garden you can walk through, while giving the plants ample room to grow. By alternating a foot of growing area and a foot square “stepping stone”, arranged like a checker board. Indeed, even the roots should be able to grow underneath the brown “stones” – or cement squares, hexagons or circles. These would not only give you room to stand within your garden, but would also provide places (perhaps boxes?) for vermiculture, “trough composting”, a small pail under one could store your tools? While on the surface it may not look like the best use of space, the blocks would effectively block out weeds, allow for root growth underneath, while vining plants could easily crawl anywhere, and “training” them would be a breeze.
The only downside would be if you were unfortunate enough to have the perfect climate for slugs: they would be hiding under half of your garden, unless you put copper plates down, and at the price of copper, this doesn’t sound like a financially sound solution.
At the end of the season, simply move the squares over the top of the previous year’s bed, add amendments and compost to next years squares.