Customer’s Cotton: Backyard Buffet


Backyard Eats  began when entrepreneur and engineer Chris Mattingly was faced with some vexing problems when he started his food gardening company in Philadelphia’s Chestnut Hill neighborhood.  How do you build a raised bed that is sturdy, long lasting, and completely toxin free?  How do you design a soil blend that retains moisture, drains well, and is teeming with beneficial microbes?  How do we keep the critters out but let the people in?

For the summer of 2015, he drove his hatchback around town, solving these classic gardener’s riddles by applying his soil engineering and carpentry experience, and relying on his training as a Master Gardener .

Now in his second year, Chris has retained all of his clients for regular maintenance, and is building new gardens for new clients, while training a crew of three budding gardeners.  Having answered the vexing questions of his very new industry, Chris is now teaching his crew how to do things the Backyard Eats way.

Backyard Eats is building a homegrown food movement by combining all aspects of food gardening into a simple and affordable service. They are determined to make food gardening easy, accessible, and delicious.

The beginnings of a garden

Similar to UberPrints, Backyard Eats lets you customize until you find the perfect match for your lifestyle. A quick look at the garden design website, and you will see that a lot of planning and expertise goes into every backyard bed.


Mattingly also wants to make sure that Backyard Eats spreads the sustainability, gardening and growing knowledge to the community not just Backyard Eats customers. He and his team teach as volunteers at the  local public school in northwest Philly where they have built raised beds on the concrete schoolyard.

A raised bed and produce seedlings

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