Wednesday, March 31, 2010

April Garden Calendar

North or South, April brings real hope that the earth will be green again.

April is the month for sowing lettuces, radishes, scallion, Swiss chard, broad beans, peas, beets, carrots and kale. Most of these you will want to stagger the sow about every two weeks to make sure you have ongoing crops until the end of their growing time.

There will be some things still edible ad bouncing back from the winter garden, depending on where you are. We have greens of different kinds, tender and so good.
These will be pretty much over by the time its warm enough to plant the remainder of the garden, we will simply turn them back into the soil for fodder..nutrients.

Anyone growing currants or gooseberry's this is the time to spray whatever you use to control red spider mites, aphids, and sawfly.

If you don't have them through mother nature consider purchasing Ladybugs for your garden...they can eat millions of aphids in a single day. They are a totally good bug.

Happy gardening~watch out for the "big" bugs !

Bea Kunz

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Around The World In Blogs~

And what, you may ask -does this have to do with "Herb Gardening."

Maybe nothing, maybe more than we know...I'm certain of one fact, herbs are grown and used all over the world, in fact long before America was a thought, herbs were being utilized for great things.

The point of this post is to introduce you to a blogger I recently met from the Ukraine, she is Marina Demchuck, a most talented writer and story teller.

I know what a gift good story-telling is, I've been exposed to a few great ones and not just anyone can deliver. It is a gift, it can't be learned...maybe perfected to a point, but too much perfection will spoil the gift.

When I read Marina's writings I am transported to the Ukraine, I can, in my minds eye see the surroundings, hear the language, (that I don't understand), and feel a connection to a part of the world that holds some of my family history.

My hubby is of German/Austrian, French and Scottish descent, his great grandparents were Russian Jews, who escaped to America in the 1940's My genetic heritage is from England and Wales.

From time to time I come across people and information that click....this is one of those clicks.
I believe we can learn from and get a small glimpse of another side of our world and it's people through this delightful woman's blog.

Who would have thought 30 years ago that a simple click of a thing called a mouse- could transport one to the other side of the globe...we must not waste the option.

I would like to know from Marina what the most used herbs are in her country, village, or family.

I hope she visits here and becomes a part of our exchanges.

I'm educating myself on White sage and Golden seal....any thoughts...anyone ?

Bea Kunz

It's All In The Dirt~

According to a study conducted by the Ohio State University Department of Entomology, crops grown in soils enriched with natural fertilizers are much less likely to suffer insect pest damage than those grown in soils fed with synthetic fertilizers.

The research also shows that plats grown in chemically fertilized soils have mineral imbalances, providing an enriched diet for arthropod herbivores.

So, here we are at the beginning of the " make a decision" season.

How will you garden this year ? Do you compost ?
Do you grow in raised beds ?
Do you encourage good insect habitats in your garden?

I would love to hear from you on these thoughts.

We are growing two new herbs this year....White sage and Golden seal, the sage I'm not concerned about, the golden seal will be a challenge.

Will also be growing Lemongrass in the greenhouse, can't wait to see how these projects develop.

Spring is making her way to Tennessee.....a few warm, sunny days and a few cold, windy and rainy days...just can't seem to make up her mind.

All in good time~

Happy weekend~

Bea Kunz

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Weeds or Herbs??

On another network I belong to the discussion is underway about edible weeds...actually herbs, that most consider weeds.

Dandelions...the pretty yellow flower that many work very hard at eradicating is really an edible herb. The leaves, stem, root, and flower all have culinary and medicinal properties that have been in use for centuries.

The root makes the most beautiful red dye.
Leaves and flowers are delicious in salads or cooked like a green.

Sage Hill makes a yummy dandelion tea. As with most herbs the medicinal values are many.

Chickweed...Yes, chickens love it, in fact if you have chickens you will have to compete for the chickweed. A little Green leaf plant with tiny white flowers.
Can be eaten cooked or raw in salads or on a sandwich.

Milk Thistle...Makes a delicious tea, has many medicinal properties, used in the treatment of liver issues...a great cleansing value.

**WARNING**As with anything you eat from the land, make certain you are 100% sure of the identity and that chemical pesticides, etc., have not been applied to the land and/or plants.

It's always fun to learn about wild edibles even if you choose not to add them to your diet...makes a very interesting project with children old enough to understand and practice the concept of not eating anything from the wild without asking permission first.

The photo here is a Trillium. Some information claims medicinal value from the root, but not advised from my view point...if i doubt, *DO NOT CONSUME*
These pretty little plants are on the endangered species list in many states.
When a petal or the flower is picked it ca take years for the plant to recoup.

My hubby and I were lucky enough to see a few of these in mountains of Western North Carolina, they are indeed beautiful. They are of the Lily family.

Spring is just around the garden gate...check out what's growing in your yard.

Bea Kunz
Happy Gardening

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I Know Spring Has Arrived When......

turnip greens, sustainable, healthy foods
The winter greens start to re-sprout and overnight are tall enough to pick.

These will be delicious until the weather starts to get really warm and then we will simply turn them under to compost and add nutrients to the soil and plant something else in the space.

One of most important things in your garden is to never allow the soil to be inactive...keep something growing all year...this is called cover-cropping during the winter....alfalfa, clover, and edible greens are a few good cover crops.

This weekend we will be cutting back the butterfly bushes, some grasses, and a few shrubs...things are beginning to show signs of budding, so can't wait any longer.
All the beds were pruned last week and they are already covered with green.

The new greenhouse will be here in a day or so, will share that project as it unfolds. I'm excited !

Happy Gardening~

Bea Kunz

Friday, March 12, 2010

Spring Equinox

Spring equinox is simply the official beginning of the spring season, the time when the Sun crosses the celestial equator and day and night are of equal length, marking the beginning of spring.
In the northern hemisphere this is around March 21, in the southern hemisphere around September 23.

For most of us it is simply the time when the weather starts to turn to a promise of warmer days and the volatile wrath of winter goes to rest.

A time to start planning for the gardening season, preparing beds, ordering seed, dreaming of the full blown results that will appear in the early summer. Beautiful flowers, aromatic herbs and fresh vegetables just for the picking.

A season to watch, admire, and learn about...the new butterfly in the butterfly bush, watch for the bees that are so crucial for pollination, and to wait for the first flock of wild turkey to appear for early morning foraging in the beds and under the trees.

Rabbits, toads, and a host of other wild critters that brave the challenge of fresh spring offerings will try to set up a home spot...some can stay and some have to move on....such is life in the world of the pecking order.

I am hoping your garden is as lively as mine with the spring arrival.

See you in the gardens~

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Herbs And Herbal News- A Good Share~

News Around Fayette County Georgia...My neighboring state and a grand place of beauty and talent...the women of Fayette are someone we should pay close attention to...and, maybe come away with some awesome insight.

~Cancer Wellness at Piedmont Fayette Hospital (PFH) is promoting health and well-being for breast cancer survivors with a cooking demonstration titled “Cooking with Herbs” on Thursday, March 4, from 2:15 to 3:15 p.m. in the Piedmont Fayette Hospital Dining Conference Room. Registration is required by calling 404-425-7944. ( read more )

Whether you will be planting them or buying them at the store, adding fresh herbs is a quick way to transform ordinary breast cancer fighting foods into extraordinary ones. Chef Hans Rueffert and dietitian Shayna Komar will educate you on simple ways to incorporate herbs into your every day meals.

“Cooking with Herbs” is part of the “Get a Move On” series – a combination of nutrition and exercise programs for breast cancer patients and survivors funded by a grant awarded to Piedmont Fayette Hospital from the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Greater Atlanta Affiliate.~read the rest of the story here..

This article was used with the permission of "Joyce Beverly," publisher of the "Fayette Woman" magazine, an awesome ongoing work with a charming and talented publisher.

From Bea Kunz, publisher of BeasBeatitudes~

Thank you Joyce for allowing us to share your information with our dedicated readers.

Spring is lurking somewhere around the garden gate, be prepared to welcome her with educational projects that will also feed your spirit and your body, as well as your mind.

Variety is the spice of life. I totally love and cherish each of you as a dedicated member of this blog....I also suggest spending time on "Fayette Woman" many, many delightful things to learn there and to bring home for test and trial.

Happy Gardening~