Tag Archives: rosemary

The Best Winter Herbs

Mini-Trees for Flavor

Second best to fresh-picked vegetables in winter, which are not within most gardener’s grasp with temperatures in the single digits, are fresh-picked herbs. Fresh-picked herbs — indoors — in winter are within the grasp of most gardeners, even non-gardeners.

Flowering and fruiting demand lots of light energy, but it is the leaves of most herbs that provide us with flavoring, so most herbs do fine in any reasonably bright window. The same goes for normal household temperatures and humidity.

So make space near your windows for herb plants!

Let’s look below ground now. Any potting mix suitable for houseplants will also be to the liking of herb plants. The mix should hold some moisture between waterings while at the same time drain well so that roots, which need to breathe, don’t suffocate. My own mix, made  from equal parts compost, perlite, peat moss, and soil, provides air and moisture as well …

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Blueberry Challenge and Aromas Good and Bad

Book Giveaway: AND THE WINNER IS: Andrea Jilling. Andrea, please contact me about mailing out the book. Everyone, stay tuned for more book giveaways in future weeks.

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Blueberry-growing used to be so boring. Each autumn I’d spread soybean meal beneath the plants as fertilizer and top it with 3 inches of leaves, wood shavings, or other mulch. Late each winter I’d prune. In late June, netting would go over the top of the plants and from then on, into September, I’d harvest oodles of blueberries.

Earlier this year I knew things could get interesting. Spotted wing drosophila (SWD), a new pest fond of many fruits, showed up last year in the area and an encore was predicted. And then, starting in early August, my harvested blueberries began to soften quickly and were soon swimming in their own juice. The culprit, SWD, was here, in numbers, with plenty of enticing berries …

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LECTURES, VEGGIES, & HERBS

My upcoming lecture schedule:

Feb 8-9, PASA (Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture, State College, PA): UNCOMMON FRUITS WITH MARKET POTENTIAL, BLUEBERRIES: RELIABLE & EASY TO GROW, HEALTHFUL, & DELICIOUS; PRUNING FRUIT TREES, SHRUBS, AND VINES

Feb 12, Planting Fields Arboretum (Oyster Bay, NY): FEARLESS PRUNING

Feb 16-17, NOFA-VT (Northeast Organic Farming Association, Burlington, VT): FRUIT GROWING SIMPLIFIED, NO-TILL VEGETABLES

Mar 2: Miami Valley (Dayton, OH) Garden Conference: WEEDLESS GARDENING

Mar 9: Philadelphia Flower Show: Fruit Growing Simplified

Mar 10: Philadelphia Orchard Project: LECTURE AND HANDS-ON WORKSHOP ON PRUNING FRUITS

Mar 16, Thetford, VT: FEARLESS PRUNING

April 6, Maine Garden Day (Lewiston, ME): FRUIT GROWING SIMPLIFIED, MULTI-DIMENSIONAL VEGETABLE GARDENING

April 10, Rosendale (NY) Library: BACKYARD COMPOSTING

April 20, Berkshire Botanical Garden (Stockbridge, MA), GROW FRUIT NATURALLY, BLUEBERRIES: RELIABLE & EASY TO GROW, HEALTHFUL, & DELICIOUS 

May 11, Margaret Roach’s Garden (Copake Falls, NY): BACKYARD FRUIT LECTURE, GRAFTING WORKSHOP

May 16, Brookside Gardens (Wheaton, MD): MY WEEDLESS GARDEN

June 1, The Cloisters (NYC): MEDIEVAL FRUITS A …

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