Join pharmacognosy* understudy Mark Fairchild for a walk through the herbal garden with a slideshow on special plants.
Mark will discuss tropical herbalism and focus on some issues surrounding invasive’s capture and those broader sustainability optioning strategies.
Get a preview on Mark’s talk visit the website www.Healthylivingtropics.org/plant books and/or www.Lampinfo.org.
*Pharmacognosy = study of medicine derived from natural sources.
Perhaps you have been the lucky one that enjoyed thunderstorm/rain showers at your address lately. The plants and the lawns are begging for it. However, I was not so lucky in my little world in Palm Springs, although there was rain around me in every direction. My patio tomatoes and the big boy tomatoes gave up. The only tomato still going strong are my Everglades, they are still hanging in there providing delicious sweet, pop in your mouth veggie or fruit? Still debating.
Hopefully, by the time you receive this newsletter, you still have time to get to the Mounts this weekend for the Plant Sale. If you have never been there, it is well worth the visit since there are so many different vendors in their space filled to the brink. The variety of plants and colors are eye popping. The Evening Herb Society will be having their booth (50B) open for business. In addition to individual herb plants, we will have smaller bowls with 3 herbs and bigger bowls with 5 herbs. Year after year, the bowls are a big hit. If you are a lover of “scented Geraniums,” we will have a variety of them. Donnie Brown, our President Emeritus, is very knowledgeable about scented geraniums and has agreed to assist our customers with their questions.
The Wellness Garden (Herb Garden) is a joy for everyone that visits, all ages. The little ones delight when they see a butterfly or a dragon fly. They are also interested in the caterpillars that are eating up the dill and the fennel. For some reason the caterpillars have left the rue alone this year and let it grow to almost 3 feet and it sports a cluster of yellow blooms. The grownups first notice the smells/scents of the garden as they enter, then they stop at the plants and are very appreciative of the signs showing the name and explanation of what the plant is used for. I notice that some visitors end up at the Nursery/Guild and buy plants. There are a few show stopper plants, but the one that stands out is the Vanilla Orchid Vine at the back of the Wellness Garden at the green bench growing over the trellis. The last few weeks it showed its Orchid flower ever so difficult to detect because the coloring is similar to the coloring of the leaves. Very beautiful.
Before the flowering plants wither and have to be pulled from the Herb Garden, come visit because they are filling up the beds with no spaces in between. The colors of red, purple, pink, yellow, blue are very intense and the plants are lush. But with every success, there is a disappointment. When the garden was planted new a couple of years ago, the plan called for a gardenia bush in the “scented” portion of the garden. Unfortunately, the gardenia bush has decided that it did not like the location it was planted at, and today it’s hardly recognizable. The spot where it is gets little sun and an abundance of water. If you have a gardenia bush that is doing well, I would welcome you telling me your success.
I hope to see you at the plant sale, April 25/26, if not, then at the regular membership meeting the last Tuesday of the month.
Ingrid Menz, Treasurer
Start potting up some herby plants; do that spring cleaning; and start baking! Bring them all to the 2015 All Things Herbal Auction. We love buying each other’s treasures and goodies. We ask that everyone who attends bring one or two items to be auctioned:
5:00pm Doors open (come earlier to help set up)
Donations are set out on tables.
6:30pm Auction starts & continues until about 8:00pm
At end Pay Treasurer (Ingrid) for what you’ve won
Help tidy up the auditorium
Go home with your booty — delighted with a really fun evening!
Bring finger foods to share — especially if you’re donating a food item for the auction. Your auction item will bring in more dollars when people have a chance to taste it beforehand!
The All Things Herbal Auction brings in funds to purchase plants for the Mounts’ Garden of Well Being, to sponsor Mounts Events, to pay for the Herbin’ Thymes newsletter, and to buy items needed for the Monthly Herb Tasting Table & Holiday Potluck.
EHS is a non-profit, volunteer-based special interest group affiliated with Mounts Botanical Garden in West Palm Beach, Florida.
Our February Meeting was lively, refreshing and, oh, so aromatic, thanks to our long-time friend and aroma therapist, Gerri Whidden. With her partner, Pat Ashford, of Nature’s Symphony handing out wands dipped in essential oils, all our members and guests began to feel the benefits of herbs and many of us took some of Nature’s Symphony superior products home to continue well-being. Our thanks, as usual, to Gerri and Pat who have been such good supporters of EHS, always, over many years together, giving us such interesting, informative, healthful evenings.
Recently, on a Saturday, Meg Vandereedt and I went to fellow Master Gardener Sue Lerner’s property to give advice about including herbs in her large collection of native plants and tropical fruits. Sue had also gone to Tom Hewitt for suggestions. Her place is on the Mounts Connoisseurs’ Tour in May; it is just off Okeechobee Boulevard in West Palm Beach and is full of horticultural treats. Don’t miss it!
For me, as an on-again, off-again grower, our best advice to Sue was plant nasturtiums, all the varieties you can find, in her herb beds and containers. Ingrid Menz has kept up EHS’s nasturtiums in our Herb Garden/Garden of Well Being at Mounts, and this delicious and pretty flowering herb has always performed so nicely for us. Meg and I also introduced Sue to Moujean Tea (Nashia inaguensis), a handsome, tropical, aromatic perennial. On the spot, we got hold of our Green Market herbman, Roland Gaudet, and by the beginning of the week, Sue had two five-gallon Moujeans and had ordered her nasturtium seeds.
The Herbin’ Thymes is very pleased to announce the addition of a new columnist to our newsletter EHS member and Master Gardener Tom Hewitt will be writing a monthly column on growing herbs here in Palm Beach County. Tom is a long-time writer for Florida Gardening magazine and is the Coordinator of Mounts Garden Guild Nursery, the go-to place to find herb plants. Tom also bakes a very popular fresh chocolate mint cookie!
For those of us interested in herbalism, the Florida School of Holistic Living in Orlando, the sponsor of the fourth annual Florida Herbal conference that eight EHS members attended on February 27 – March 1, outside Deland this February, is offering a weekend-long intensive course in Miami on practical herbalism. Learn about over 25 herbs, how to integrate herbal medicine into daily life, and how to make herbal preparations (12 CEU’s for LMT, Acupuncture, Dietitian, Nutrition), April 25-26, from 10 am to 6 pm, Saturday and Sunday. Contact Florida School of Holistic Living, 407-595-3731 or info@ holisticlivingschool.org. If you go, we’d love to hear about it at our May Meeting or perhaps you’d like to write a piece about your experience for the newsletter?Donnie Brown