Growing Herbs

Hollyhock

Alcea rosea With its old world charm, this flower brings delight to any garden. Large flowers are borne on tall stalks, and eventhough it is classified as a biennial or short lived perennial, daughter plants spring up easily from spent mother plants and it also…

Lesser Calamint

Nepetha calaminta This beautifully fragrant plant with its semi glossy leaves on multibranched stems and white to light lilac flowers has historically been used as medicine, and for flavouring foods. DO not use when pregnant.

Seed Saving – Basil

Seed Saving – Basil

Ah. End of summer. Time to harvest the basil… and the basil seeds!   To many people basil is THE one herb to have in the kitchen garden. And it is also the one plant most often requested from the nursery at the start of Spring. With…

Gardening in February

Gardening in February

Notoriously the hottest summer month, and also one of the driest months, February can be challenging in the garden. Besides the weather, it is also a time of plants maturing, with many annual and biennial herbs going to flower and seed. This bolting may make the garden…

Seed Saving – Umbelliferous plants (think Parsley, Fennel & Dill)

Seed Saving – Umbelliferous plants (think Parsley, Fennel & Dill)

A great many of my umbelliferous plants are going to flower now and seed now, making it a perfect time to save seeds for new plantings. You probably have some umbelliferae in your garden too! It is a big word, for a big family, but it basically…

Seed Saving – Lettuce Seeds

Seed Saving – Lettuce Seeds

Many people see the tall upright stalks of bolting lettuce as unattractive and unruly in a garden, and with the lettuce leaves becoming tougher and more bitter as the plant goes to seed, it is generally a sign to pull them out and make space…

Seed Saving – Tomato Seeds

Seed Saving – Tomato Seeds

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes! It is probably the one must-grow plant for almost every vegetable gardener. And growing tomatoes is tremendously rewarding – not only do you get an abundant supply of vine fresh tomatoes, but you can also preserve your summer crop bounty to enjoy deep into…

Seed Saving – Sunflower Seeds

Seed Saving – Sunflower Seeds

Quintessential to a perfect vegetable and herb garden (I think!) are the beautiful large bright yellow heads of sunflowers!             Besides their happy looks, they are quite useful too, sunflowers – >attract a host of beneficial insects such as bumblebees, bees and…

Thyme selections

Thyme selections

A recent discussion that ran on a Facebook page, and an article I wrote on growing footpath herbs, prompted me to do a post on the different Thymes we have at MeadowSweet. I do so love this common culinary (and medicinal herb), and am slowly but surely…

Gardening in January

Gardening in January

Ah! The midsummer garden… If all went well with your planning and planting, you will be reaping the rewards continually now. Harvest daily all your ripening crops of tomatoes, chillies, bell peppers, cucumbers, beans, peas, zucchini, globe artichokes, and eggplant. Timely picking of fruit and…