Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Birthing Month....Mulch in the Mouth

Toysmith 2296 Kids Gardening Hand Tool Set

Spring has shown its glorious face and my daughter is in Love. Today, we spent almost all of her waking time outside in the back-yard. I should mention the back-yard is full of cement and steps and mulch borders and gravel. It's not ideal but it's something.

The previous owner left behind seven pots of various sizes, so we will definitely start having fun very soon planting some herbs. Right now, we have a little spearmint plant and a parsley plant awaiting new homes.

I am thrilled to have found a family-run nursery (Greenstreet Gardens) within walking distance. Okay, so it's 2.5 miles one way but it's a doable trip every once in a while. Potting soil is definitely on the list.

I've started brain-storming what kind of herbs I want to grow this year. Echinacea is certainly on the list. I didn't make any Echinacea tinctures this past year and ended up spending way too much money on commercially-made tinctures during our battles with various colds. Echinacea root is typically used when making extracts but it takes at least 3-4 years for the roots to be the size you need. So, my plan is to just harvest the flowers this year.

Perhaps, I'll be able to pick up some Echinacea plants at the Baltimore Herb Festival. If you live in the Mid-Atlantic region and are interested in herbs, it's worth the trek. Growers from all over the region are selling interesting and sometimes hard to find plants. In the past, I've picked up....comfrey, mugwort, meadowsweet, lady's mantle, feverfew, boneset, calendula, tulsi, lemon balm, echinacea, African-blue basil and marshmallow at the festival. Mark your calenders for May 26th and make sure to bring a wagon or wheel-barrow!

Lina has been using little twigs to dig in the mulch, so I stopped into Why Not? (Old Town's independent toy store) and found some great gardening tools from Toysmith. They are real metal and wood and some quite substantial. I can't wait to give them to her and watch her go to town with them!

Cheers to all those baby plants popping up everywhere!

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