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Basil-an edible ornamental

redrubinbasilweb


Framed, Vintage Pressed flower page

Make a copy of a page from an old horticultural dictionary.  Use a card stock parchment paper. Center the glass from the frame and cut around it with an craft knife.

Make a copy of a page from an old horticultural dictionary. Use card stock,  parchment paper. Center the glass from the frame and cut around it with a craft knife.

Place pressed lavender across the page. Position it so that it fits into the frame and also across the wording.

Place pressed lavender across the page. Position it so that it fits into the frame and across the wording.

Center the frame and adjust the pressed flower if necessary to fit the frame as well as the wording on the page. Glue the pressed flower in place.

Center the frame and adjust the pressed flower if necessary to fit the frame as well as the wording on the page. Glue the pressed flower in place.

Place glass and frame and secure the back of the frame into place.

Place glass and frame and secure the back of the frame into place.

100_8150Notes on pressed flowers. The flowers must be completely dried.


Spice for the Impatient Gardener

My gardener’s heart knows that to every seed there is a season before it fruits.
But there are times when I crave a fresh dose of greens and can’t want to wait for a harvest from the garden.
Sprouts  are fresh spice for any time of year. They are low in fat, filled with vitamins, minerals, protein and are ready to eat in about a week.
I grab a big pinch of them and eat them as a snack. You can also toss them in scrambled eggs, use in place of lettuce on sandwiches, add to salads and wraps, and garnish the top of hot soup just before serving.
 sproutsSprouting seeds-
Alfalfa is the most common, but there are many that add unique flavors and textures. 
Broccoli: a nice radish-like bite of flavor.
Chia: a bit of a tang, but much like alfalfa sprouts in texture and flavor.
Clover: similar in flavor to alfalfa sprouts.
Fenugreek: a mild curry-like flavor, exotic flavor,
yummy in chicken wraps.
Lentils: a bit of peppery flavor
Mung Bean: the texture is nice a crispy. Pea-like flavor.
Radish: much like the flavor of the vegetable, it will spice up any dish.
Sunflower: a nutty flavor, yummy on a hot cup of tomato soup! 
 
How-to:
Use a clean glass canning jar with a sprout screen as the lid.
Clean, and rinse jar to clean well.
Add  about 1 1/2 teaspoons of seeds to the jar
sproutjoyPlace a fine mesh screen on top of jar and tighten metal ring to hold in place.
Partially fill the jar with warm (not hot) water and swirl around to clean seeds; pour out water. Refill with warm water and soak overnight.
After overnight soak, pour out water and place jar at a slight angle (a counter top dish drainer works well for this) to allow remaining water to run out.  Turn jar to spread seed over the inside of the jar. Rinse sprouts daily, up to 2 or 3 times, with cool fresh water-allowing the jar to rest tilted to drain out excess water. Turn jar to spread seeds on the inside of the jar.  As they get larger,  thicken and green up, place sprouts  in indirect light. Repeat  rinsing until the sprouts are lush and ready to eat,  rinse well and drain before placing in the refrigerator. Keep finished sprouts refrigerated and use within a week.
Remember:
-Rinse often
-Don’t over seed, give them room to breathe.
-Keep moist,-not wet.
-Sprout at room temperature- keep fresh ready-to-eat ones  in the fridge.
-Sprout with joy!
 
Resources for seeds and supplies:
http://www.mountainroseherbs.com
www.sproutpeople.org
http://www.botanicalinterests.com

 


Wordless Wednesday


Un-Weedin’ the Garden

Image

Nana: “We weeded the garden today”

Alexis: “No Nana, we un-weeded the garden today.”

I stand corrected! That is exactly what we did…pulled weeds. Once again, the joy of gardening through my 5-year-old granddaughters point of view.

Now for some other thoughts on un-weeding your garden! Read “In  Defense of Weeds”,

After the click…Compost mulches and more…oh my!

Other weedy stuff:

Rocked by design, rainbow chip gravel as mulch

Natural weed and feed. Chickens love dandelions, weed your garden, feed your chickens

A little moo in your do! www.moo-doo.com/moodoo

Top dress planting beds 3 inches deep with this nourishing compost for happy soil and suppressed weeds. Sounds like good therapy to me!

 

 

 

 

 

Nothing fishy about this…just another great compost to try:

Oly Mountain fish compost 

Dig into spring!


Re-defining Andante

It is so very close to flower show time. The Pacific Northwest is buzzing as the calendar flips to February. The buzz in my head started many months ago. I received a phone call from Mark the Pond Guy (www.markthepondguy.com) and he said he was involved in putting together one of the big display gardens this year. Would I like to hear more? Hmmm, out of curiosity, I said sure I’ll come to a meeting. I usually skip a year between garden shows to catch my breath from the monumental task of building one of the gardens. So I sat in a planning meeting with Mark,his wife Cindy and friend,  Joan Bogan.  Their enthusiasm was infectious. I do love designing these gardens. So, I was caught up in a whirlwind of music notes, plants, stone, rocks, koi, water and a grand piano. Quite a combination don’t you think? So we converge on the convention center to build this whirlwind of ideas. Mark describes the feeling this week of preparation like a kid anticipating Christmas day. Me too! Along the way I have learned a few things as well. Like what andante is, how wonderful the sound of a piano is when played by someone so passionate about music, how rock can weigh tons or weigh nothing, how hard it is to have mileage and very busy schedules between team members. Yet there is this thing called passion that we all have, and it is to share a garden that you could envision yourself in.  We are re-defining andante.

Redefining Andante’  ( ăn-dăn-‘tē)

Andante allows passage through music that changes the tempo. The listener can catch their breath.

How does andante feel in a garden?

The hectic race and crescendo of life is far beyond this space. Welcome to a small, tranquil garden that invites you to slow the pace and be inspired to compose and create. The sound and movement of water spills from a tumble of building ruins that weaves through a garden in harmony with foliage and color that relaxes and soothes. Original music inspired by this garden, written by one of the creators, will be performed throughout the show.

Put that visual in your head and then come to the show to see it full-scale. Grand piano and all…


Last minute gift Idea: Wrap up Tea Time

Wrap up Tea Time


Purchase pre-packaged or make your own blends if you have dried herbs harvested from the summer garden.

Create a unique card to hold tea bags. Try this easy one sheet (scrapbook paper 12 x 12) folded accordion card,

how-to’s are here:

http://scrapbooking.about.com/od/3dembellishments/ss/onesheetminibook.htm

Gift Package with a tea cup, shortbread cookies, a jar of honey, and a personal sentiment,  plus inspirations that slow the pace and relax with a cup of tea,  like a good book.

 

 

 

 

Create unique blends to give

Herbal Tea Recipe Blends:
Experiment with flavors you like, try not to add more than three ingredients at a time.
Sweet, Minty and Soothing
1 cup dried lavender buds
1 cup dried spearmint
½ cup dried German chamomile blossoms
A Tangy Touch Of Citrus
1 cup dried pineapple sage
1 cup rosehips, lightly crushed
½ cup dried lemon balm 
A Floral Blend
½ cup rose petals
½ cup lavender buds
1 cup lemon verbena

Herbs Mixed With Indian or China Teas:

Create flavorful blends from purchased bulk teas. Mix a single herb with bulk tea such as Darjeeling, green or Earl Gray to create unique blends.  The homegrown herb will enhance the tea with flavor and fragrance. Begin by mixing the tea 4 parts to 1 part of dried herb.


Combinations to try:

English lavender buds with Earl Gray

Spearmint with green tea

Bee balm with Darjeeling

Package hand-blended loose teas in small glassine bags.Seal and label with the flavor and instructions on how to brew.To use: 1 teaspoon of loose herbs per cup of hot water.

Copy this tea label or make your own. This beautiful frame was found at http://www.graphicsfairy.blogspot.com


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