Gardening in the front yard

I’ve admired the front yard of a house on the 1500 block of 8th St where raised beds bring forth lettuce and something that looks like bok choy. Currently the beds are covered in opaque plastic. That’s probably to protect seedlings, while providing light and warmth.
I haven’t gone the way of raised beds yet. I tested my soil last year and so far it’s biggest problem is that there is too much fertilizer, more than likely from my over use of compost. The soil has been amended and isn’t very clay-like anymore so there isn’t a need, I think, to raise the beds. However, due to a planned paint project a number of front yard plants will be in pots.
Despite being sick and woo-woo in the head from the cold medicine I’m taking, I filled some pots this weekend. Despite being less than charmed with Swiss Chard, I’m growing it again, but mainly for looks. Swiss Chard can be pretty growing in the yard. Prettier than arugula, which though tasty, is just green and leafy. The arugula is staying, but I am going to try growing it in pots this year.