UH-OH. Passed by the flower market today. Wasn't going to, wasn't really in the mood, but boy, how fast did that change!
Me and a flower market shoppe?!
Let's just say I need to make room for a few new friends!
I was planning on getting some mint plants for the side of the house anyway, and I picked up 3 different types: Peppermint (there's really no such thing as Peppermint it's really a hybrid plant), Menthol Mint (it's a very strong, quite medicinal kind of Mint, think digestive issues like gas, bloating and spasms) and Chocolate Mint. They also had Ginger Mint and Pineapple Mint. Ginger Mint had yellow leaves and wasn't looking too good, and for the Pineapple one, I've purchased her in the past and was none too keen on the fuzziness of the leaves. I know there are TONS of varieties of Mints (Richters has a lot!) and once I get started, I'd love to have them all! Well, to be honest, I'd love to grow so many stinkin' weeds and plants, but I only have so much space ;)
I also picked up a Pineapple Sage :) I'm smiling because Sage was the first plant who decided to take the leap and speak to me. That was also the first year that she decided to go to flower in the middle of February, when it was deep winter weather outside!! Will have to find a little nook for her, as I hadn't anticipated her arrival (ahem), nor the arrival of 2 other plants: Yarrow! They are both Yarrow and there are actually many different types of Yarrow, achillea millefollium being the wild, white type that is found on many a-lawn and seen as a pesky weed, but that is actually the most potent medicinally. Then there are others that are grown as ornamentals (however they still have the same medicinal properties as the white one, just less so), will different colored flowers. The ones I got are Moonshine (yellow flowers) and Name Unknown (flowers are red but lost the tag with the name). I have seen wild Yarrow with Pink flowers growing in Bellefield and I have to say that ALL Yarrows attract pollinators and beneficial insects, as well as curb away nasty ones like mosquitoes! Definitely one to add as a companion friend in the garden :)
I've mentioned some of the benefits in Yarrow in posts from last year, but hey, always nice to review info! Some benefits:
In my previous diary post I was talking about seed saving. I didn't mention all the plants of the seeds that I've been saving for years, but it made me remember one that I have been saving: Malva sylvestris. I actually bought the original plant 7 years ago and have been saving seeds ever since. Malva is latin for Mallow and she is in the Mallow family. Although she is a perennial, she'd have to be properly mulched to come back year after year as mine (and my neighbor's) never has.
I've gotten to pulling up the whole plant in the fall, and ALL parts of Mallow are edible/medicinal. I use:
I got 2 other types of Mallows, a "Zebrina" that is striped purple, pink and white and a "Moschata Rosea" that has all pink flowers with leaves more pinnate than is typical of the usual Mallow family (see pics below). I've already planted Mallow seeds into the pots (not sure what variety she is know that I come to think of it, no not Zebrina as the flowers are all purple), so will make room for the Rosea one and give the Zebrina one to my neighbor, who will be more than happy for the pleasant addition to her garden (too bad she's not into eating the leaves and seeds, oh well, different strokes for different folksies ;) I'm a little on the adventurous, wild type, as y'all can prob tell ;)
Will wait to plant them as YES, there were actually a few flurries out and about the other day. Whoo brother is right! My cuke plants are spent and 2 of the Borage plants are hanging on...She's a hardy one, I tell ya! Speaking of which, I find that she fairs much better as an early summer bloomer, because when I've planted some later, she tends to get easily infected by aphids. Of course, I wasn't too crazy about the soil I got last year, even if was organic. I can tell the compost I added this year means the soil is strong, and I might (might not) even add some worm castings. Hoping to pick up some seaweed fertilizer at the Environment Day this weekend that my city holds each year. Um, yeah, there will also be flowers and herbs being sold there, but just how many more can I get?
Now don't get me started, because I did see a lovely lavendula angustifolia plant while I was at the flower market today. Now how come I put her back down? Ah yes, too many plants, only two hands ;) Anyway, the flower market will be there until the end of June, so plenty of time to bring home more friends! Plus, the plants get put on liquidation by June in order that they all get a better home than the small pot they're in. Yes, they do tend to be root bound by then, and you can tell they are so happy when they get out into the garden (or into a bigger pot, in my case).
Plants don't ask much, you know. Food, water, and some shelter like from the wind if they can't handle it, and Love. If you don't talk to them, they are happy to be as they are regardless, but if you do, they appreciate your company and that you decided to go beyond the rationalistic hum-drums of the constant chattering mind.
Just like humans. They don't need much and Love is a key ingredient :)
Looking more closely at Malva Rosea, the leaves are a bit different, but the similarity to other Mallows is still there...oopsy, that reminds me I am behind in my Botany class and better hop to it!
Last note before I go: found a bag of dirty Dandelion greens and roots on my doorstep when I came back from the mall, nice little gift from neighbor indeedy. But, oooh, Mr. Wilson is going to be having a fit come morning when he discovers it's going to be Dandy juice all week long!! Ha ha! Speaking of which, Dr. Axe was interviewed about his book by Paleo Hacks and you can watch that HERE.
Also note that he talks about:
Final note: if you're not into bone broth because of veg-head reasons, no worries, tons of other ways to boost longevity and qi! Chlorella and Spirulina are 2 of them, also used as a source of protein and good to help with liver qi...
OK, enough Chinese medicine talk! See ya next time, sunshine, when hopefully seeds from Richters will be in and I'll be having a high time planting in the rest of the balcony garden :)
Curiosity Got The Cat: