Wordless Wednesday: Herbs

Parsley
Lemon Verbena
Mint
Sage

Basil
Flat Leaf Parsely
Lavender
And the Rose … Herb of the Year!

Bloom Thyme Friday: Minty Fresh

I have heard it said that once you start growing mint, it’s difficult to stop. There are a couple of reasons for this … you will become addicted to the fragrance and yummy flavoring it provides and the other reason is that it is a true overachiever in the garden–sending out runners in every direction. I find it is best to keep mint in a pot. You won’t love it if it takes over your garden!

Since I garden in Zone 5 and put my mints in pots, I over winter them in my potting shed. They don’t get enough light to flourish but enough to survive.

One mint in particular gets my utmost attention in the winter … the Apple Mint. This mint was the last garden gift from my mother before she passed away more than 20 years ago. The Apple Mint has survived almost 25 winters. I have several pots going … just to be sure. I would be devastated if I lost it. Few things make me feel closer to my mom.

I am not the only one that puts a high price on mint–Luke 11:42 says … for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs.

Mint has long been regarded as a symbol of hospitality, the Romans would strew it around at feasts and banquets as a welcoming sign to guests.

I use lots of mint when guests come too … especially in my “famous” lemonade (click for recipe). In fact, we hardly ever have a drink in the summer that doesn’t have mint in it!

Currently I am growing these mints:

  • Peppermint: Predictably strong and wonderful for tea!
  • Orange Mint: Lighter citrus flavor and great in drinks too!
  • Lemon Mint: Strong citrus flavor … a little goes a long way.
  • Chocolate Mint: Strong, pretty but not the best in drinks.
  • Apple Mint: Fuzzy, beautiful, but better as a plant than a flavoring.

All look great and smell great in cut flower arrangements!

What is your favorite mint? How do you use in it?

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Bloom Thyme: From Ordinary to Extraordinary

I love growing in containers. I grow everything from tomatoes and herbs to exotic flowers and shrubs. Each year it is fun to decide what containers to use and what plants to try.

Through the years I have turned just about everything into a container for plants. Sometimes I find something unusual and the container is more important than the plant. But, most of the time my containers are ordinary and it’s the plants that make them special.

However, there is one container that I use every year that is very special to me, this little metal water pitcher that is filled with lemon mint…

Mammy’s water pitcher…

This pitcher belonged to my grandmother … the same grandmother who went to see her doctor when she was in her 80s and asked the doctor to give her a pill that would make her feel strong enough to hoe in the garden. Don’t you love that. I’m sure I will be the same way!

This little pitcher was a part of her everyday, ordinary life. To me it is completely extraordinary in the memories that it holds!

I am told she had the greenest of thumbs and could grow anything. And, you can be sure that I love it when other family members say, “You remind me of your grandmother, Mammy!”

Here are some containers in my garden and even a picture of me taken a few years ago dressed in one of Mammy’s dresses, holding her water pitcher…

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My favorite plants to use in containers…

  • Tomatoes (because I am obsessed)
  • Chile Peppers
  • Mint (…Because I love it and use a lot of it BUT it will take over if you plant in ground!)
  • Most used cooking herbs
  • Nasturtiums (Planted around my tomatoes)
  • Dorotheanthus Mezoo (Big name but excellent training plant)
  • Lantana (Hummingbirds & butterflies love)
  • Wave Petunias (’cause they can take the heat)
  • Geraniums
  • Coleus
  • Ferns
  • Gardenias
  • Succulents

For more on container gardening, click here.

Do you have a container that holds special memories?

You might also enjoy these stories…

Memories of My Mom…

My Dad the Sailor…