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September Garden Harvest

September Garden Harvest

Well the late September garden is full of chiles as well as herbs to harvest and preserve... that's what I've been doing the past few days. And the annual flowers are blooming their hearts out--getting the last of the calendula flower heads and gathered the nasturtiums for a lovely, peppery vinegar. I also sowed some lettuce seeds, cold-weather spinach, cilantro,kale and radishes; I am not sure whether they will germinate and produce before the cold weather sets in, though I decided to take a chance. If they do germinate, I'll be covering them with floating row cover for sure.

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Last Day of Summer

Last Day of Summer

Today is the last day of summer and tomorrow heralds the autumnal equinox. The summer garden is definitely looking like fall is in the air. See what my zone 7 Maryland garden looks like and what I'm harvesting and preserving.

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DeBaggio Herb Farm and Nursery

DeBaggio Herb Farm and Nursery

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Last, though not least, I want to write about the last herb farm that we visited on our IHA field trip, DeBaggio Herb Farm and Nursery. Although they are closed for the season, they weeded their gardens and opened up for us to visit.

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Blooming Hill Lavender Farm

Blooming Hill Lavender Farm

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The IHA post-conference fieldtrip went to Virginia. One of the highlights of the tour was a visit to Blooming Hill Lavender Farm with an herbal lunch catered by Kim Labash, proprietress of Loudon Valley Herbs. Cyndi and Peter Rinek are collectors of many things besides lavender and you will enjoy the photos herein of their delightful farm in Philomont, Virginia.

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The Green Farmacy Garden

The Green Farmacy Garden

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The Green Farmacy Garden is Dr. Jim Duke's medicinal herb teaching garden (his book the Green Pharmacy published by Rodale in 1997 has sold over a million copies) used by the Maryland University of Integrative Health, located in Fulton, Maryland. Recently, the International Herb Association went on a field trip there--read all about it here!

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The Blooms in June

The Blooms in June

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Tomorrow is the summer solstice--the longest day of the year--and this date heralds the arrival of summer in full swing. We gardeners are diligently tending our pieces of earth, delighting in each bloom or growth spurt and anxiously awaiting the ripening of our summertime bounty.

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Salsa Verde with Wild Weeds

Salsa Verde with Wild Weeds

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I thought for sure that I had posted the recipe for making salsa verde with botanicals foraged from in and around the garden, however I can only find my traditional one posted, which contains garden grown herbs and greens. So here is the wild weed version for those of you who requested it.

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Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata)

Garlic Mustard (Alliaria petiolata)

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Yes, it is an invasive plant and garlic mustard grows all over the place--however if you have it, you might as well eat it. It is a nutritious leafy green that tastes like a garlic-flavored green and it is yours for the harvesting.

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Seeds and the Art of Hitchhiking

Seeds and the Art of Hitchhiking

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Reproduction may be science, but seeds have hitchhiking down to an art.

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Wild Bergamot or Purple Bee Balm   (Monarda fistulosa)

Wild Bergamot or Purple Bee Balm (Monarda fistulosa)

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Last blog, I wrote about the red-flowered bee balm (Monarda didyma) and promised that I would write about wild bee balm (Monarda fistulosa). So here it is--still green--though it will be covered with lavender blooms in the next month.

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Bee Balm (Monarda didyma)

Bee Balm (Monarda didyma)

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I've written about Monarda in past posts, when it was in bloom in my garden. However, you needn't wait until it is in bloom--right now it is about two feet tall and the leaves are not only gorgeous--they are delicious! Read on to see how to use beebalm for both food and drink.

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Finding Delight in a Cold and Soggy Spring

Finding Delight in a Cold and Soggy Spring

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Usually in Maryland as Memorial Day approaches, I have pretty much put in tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash and basil, temps are in the 70s and 80s and I'm wearing summer clothes. Not so this spring! It has been rainy and downright cold--my peppers and tomatoes are out there in a pout--and I'm wearing long sleeves, hoodie, socks and boots! What is spring like in your garden?

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Stinging Nettles

Stinging Nettles

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Last weekend, while botanizing along the White River in the Ozarks, we found many plants along the trail and came upon a large stand of healthy nettles. So armed with gloves, knives and pruners, we harvested a large amount of nettles which we brought home to cook down for a lovely mess a’ greens and we used the trimmings to make a nettle tincture.

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Green Garlic

Green Garlic

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Green Garlic is a gourmet delight. You can't really have it unless you grow it--or live near a garlic farmer who thins it in the spring or brings it to farmers' market. These delightful early garlics are delicious and easy to prepare and are well worth growing or seeking out.

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Cabbage en Escabeche

Cabbage en Escabeche

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I've been traveling around the country giving lectures on Capsicum, Herb of the Year 2016. When I do cooking demos, I often prepare one of my favorite and most delicious recipes: Cabbage en Escabeche. I have had many requests for the recipe so here it is.

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How to Plant for Pollinators

How to Plant for Pollinators

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Celebrate National Lawn Care Month by replacing some of your lawn with pollinator-friendly plants. Lawns are nice, but some of that space could be used to attract needy pollinators to your landscape.

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Spring Foraging: Wild Weeds, Herbal Harbingers and Enticing Ephemerals

Spring Foraging: Wild Weeds, Herbal Harbingers and Enticing Ephemerals

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AAhhh--it is that time of year again--spring is bustin' out all over and we gardeners are rejoicing with the first harvests of earth's offerings. Here are some photos of what I'm picking and what's for dinner; get inspired, get out there and forage, or at least graze!

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Best Garden Bush Bean Varieties

Best Garden Bush Bean Varieties

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I feel that I've done injustice to bush beans by not giving them credit where credit is due. I'd like to take some time today to share with you some of our favorite bush bean varieties.

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Totally Free Online Vegetable Garden Planners

Totally Free Online Vegetable Garden Planners

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As far as I can tell, we're all going to need a leg up. Here's where a cheat sheet comes in handy.

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Recipes featuring Pulses

Recipes featuring Pulses

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Having been a vegetarian for over 40 years, I have a large repertoire of recipes featuring legumes: beans, lentils, split peas, chickpeas, etc. I have written a number of recipes using them in various blogs over the years. Here is an unpublished favorite for Tortilla Pie and links to seven recipes with pulses.

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