Monday, May 18, 2009

Last Year's Garden - mostly herbs

There was a frost threat last night that led to me putting flower pots on a bunch of things but that does not make for pretty pitures and it was a bit cold so I have decided today to look at some photos from last year. I posted pictures of things that are great in container gardens, even if they aren't in my pictures.

I really, really like chervil. It is lacy, pretty fancy and hard to get in groceries. It is one of the Frenchie fine herbs. I have also found it to be tougher than many say it is. I have seen seedlings survive uh... incredibly cold weather, now I can't say what the bottom was, 5 or 10 degrees fahrenheit? I dunno, but I recall that the chervil in this picture came from a bunch that survived that. These guys are in a pot and this year I have them in my salad bowl.

I think it is best to start them from seed rather that seedlings but if it is late and there are only plants available, go with them. Chances are, especially if they end up in a hot spot that they will flower and go to seed sooner than you'd like. Let them. The flowers are cute. Use some as garnishes but let a few go to seed and you'll be set with more chervil by fall.
I love chamomile. I started last year with one pot. In most pots there is not just one, but many chamomile plants. I broke them up into many small bunches and planted them all over my garden. The result has been, even though I was fairly vigilant about harvesting is that I have chamomile everywhere.

This is not a bad thing. If I don't want it somewhere, when I remove it, it complies and does not come back. I hear that chamomile is one of the most agreeable plants that there is and that plants growing close to it actually grow better. I don't know if this is true, but outside of having less space, I haven't noticed any of my plants suffering in chamomile's company. The flowers also attract many beneficial insects.

So if you have limited space, try some German chamomile. It's relaxing just to look at it.
Mint is something that I only grow in pots. I love the stuff. It's great for tea and certain popular mixed drinks. I also like to spruce up any cold drink with a sprig.

I keep it in pots because if you plant it in the ground it will once established take over everything. If I had a small bed surrounded by concrete I might let it take ove, but I don't, so in a pot it stays. My pot is however large enough to grow a tomato so you might understand that I love mint. I suppose peppermint is my favorite but I also like corsican, a tiny leafed variety, in the upper left of this picture, that could be risked in a bed. Another noninvasive variety is pineapple with it kinda pretty too.
I used to have a gumby but somebody stole it. My front yard gets lots of foot traffic and the scale is such that small toys like gumby are good lawn ornaments. A giant gnome would look stupid. Todd gave me some weird soldiers to ornament my yard. I guess I oughta plant them.

Gumpy is admiring an Alaskan nasturtium. These are better sown as seeds because they are fussy about being transplanted but if you are careful, they'll be alright. I transplant all sorts of things that they say shouldn't be. You just need to be gentle and vigilant. I guess I tend to check up on my babies as often as I can til they settle in.

This is one reason why having one of those mister pump things is a good thing. There's no better way to spot water a fragile transplant. They also are good for chasing cats away and giving yourself a cooling off on hot days.

Nasturtiums are completely edible. They taste like cress, very peppery. The flowers add some color to salads, or are nice as a garnish while the leaves with their werid shape are pretty cool too. I am partial to alsaka's variegated look.
On a different topic... It seems dumb, but since I started forwarding this blog to twitter I got 2 more subscribers, er followers, and this is after maybe a week. I don't have an iphone, though I play with Todd's every morning before he brings me my coffee in bed, yes I am spoiled, but anyway I'll just keep twitting.
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