Snow in the Garden — Again!?

snow-0905Unbelieveably enough, we received a second coating of snow in our Herbal Treasures garden this season, and this time it was about 3-inches!

Of course all of the school children were delighted, because in addition to it being deep enough to really have some fun with, the abundance of it resulted in school closings. 

To our delight, the snow remained for several days, so we could all enjoy it… I can never resist capturing Snow Days in our garden!

Anticipation for Spring!

tulip-blk-parrot

Around Thanksgiving a luscious assortment of bulbs arrived, that has all of us anticipating their appearance this spring!

It is a special Black-and-White collection of tulips and narcissus:

N. Misty Glen

N. Bridal Crown

N. Ice Wings

T. Pasionnale

T. Weisse Berliner

T. Silverstream

T. Black Parrot

T. Black Hero

Leucojum aestivum

This precious shipment was 10 pounds of 100 bulbs in total! With our fairly mild weather at the time of receiving them, we got them planted easily, scheduling planting segments around our appreciated rain showers.

While I can hardly wait to see the results of our planting efforts, I have to share with you I most look forward to seeing the Black Parrot Tulip!  If you click on the linked text or picture of this gorgeous tulip (above), you can read more about it.

Upon receipt and inspection, I must say they are the nicest bulbs I think I have ever planted in our Herbal Treasures’ Garden! They were much larger that the bulbs you might buy at many of the national garden centers and big box stores. I have purchased them at these outlets many times before, myself. While shipping of spring bulbs has ceased, you can peruse, anticipate, order and plant for summer — and fall, 2009!

This was a very special surprise gift from my friends at Brent and Becky’s Bulbs

Herbal Treasures Featured WordPress Blog

Gar Path  We received a cool surprise in our email today! 

Herbal Treasures’ blog was featured by WordPress — check it out

Fall is a Time of Renewal

Fall Apple Bskt  Although in the latter portion of the year, fall has always seemed to be a time of renewal to me. It is a time of starting anew — a new school year, a new project, completion of the summer’s many responsibilities and chores, or looking ahead to a busy, new fall schedule.

Fall also seems to be a festive time of the year to me. The weather generally cools a bit initially, the days turn golden, and the colorful leaves make for a bright, happy time to celebrate!

Fall brings with it many traditions we anticipate and share…

Two Family Favorite Fall Recipes:

***Hot Spiced Cider***

Warm 1 gallon of fresh apple cider in a large pot, over medium heat.  

Thinly slice 1 orange and 1 lemon, and add slices to the warming cider.

Add 6 broken cinnamon sticks and a handful of whole cloves in the pot.

Cover, reducing heat to low. Simmer, allowing flavors to blend about 20-30 minutes.

Serve in pretty mugs. (Aromatherapy in a mug — and in the kitchen!)

***Roasted Pumpkin Seeds***

Cut a lid out of your chosen pumpkin. Use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and stringy pulp.

Rinse the seeds, removing the strings and pulp from them. Soak them for about 30 minutes in 2 cups of water with 1 teaspoon of salt added.

Remove the seeds from the salty solution and let them dry on clean papertowels.

Spread a single layer of pumpkin seeds on an oiled baking sheet. Sprinkle them with garlic salt, onion salt and chili pepper — or your favorite blend!

Bake 10-15 minutes in a 350-degreeF oven, until the seeds begin to lightly brown. Stir the seeds occasionally throughout the baking time.

Garden Project: Bulb Forcing

Bulbs  Fall is a busy time for gardeners, with so many things to do — end of season chores including the lawn, transplanting some new additions for the next season (especially woody plants and spring bulbs, for drifts of color).

Now is the time to take cuttings of tender perennials, to propagate more plants over the winter, to get a jump on spring.

How about forcing some bulbs, for flowers you will enjoy later, indoors? They also make great holiday gifts.

Here’s a “how-to” guide

Saving Seeds

Seed Packets  Saving seeds from your garden is a great way to propagate next season’s garden!

A little effort now will help you jumpstart your garden for the next growing season.

Share some of the bounty of your seed harvest with others.

Expand your garden in a frugal manner, by exchanging seeds with other gardeners.

More information on Seed Saving

Tip: 

Store your seeds in small envelopes labled with plant name and date harvested.

For fun gifties, print out a precious seed packet to package up your treasures for giving.