Harvesting what I can

The rhubarb isn’t growing very well this year. I put it down to the crown only being rehomed in its new spot in March, so its roots couldn’t develop in time. Never mind, it is good to have a rest now and then, anyway.

On the other hand, the lemon balm reseeded itself literally all over the back garden, so I can have as many cups of tea as I could wish for.

Lemon balm tea for my morning refreshment

Since doing one of my many MOOCs, where I learned about how big my carbon footprint was from consuming imported coffee and bananas etc, and realising that coffee was giving me reflux, the lemon balm (and mint, which has been making its relentless spread) are a welcome substitute.

The chive flowers are just coming into bloom, so they are another welcome addition to my diet. They, like the lemon balm, have self-seeded in new places and when the bumble bees aren’t distracted by phacelia, which is also all over the garden, they are in their element on it.

Having moved the soil which was where the pond now is, poppies are also springing up all over. These are largely being pulled out, though. At least they are providing biomass for the compost bin, which with all the phacelia means this year might be poor in terms of food for me but hopefully good for my soil in the future.

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About Helen

I have always been interesting in living a more environmentally friendly lifestyle and used to do what I could. Now, I have come to realise that we have reached such a point in terms of environmental degradation that it is more important - perhaps - to focus on building resilience. I therefore do as much as I can to reuse, grow my own and encourage a supportive community, for example. I also keep reading and learning all the time.
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10 Responses to Harvesting what I can

  1. Clare Pooley says:

    Herbal teas are so much better for us than coffee! I love herbs and don’t mind them spreading themselves around too much. The bees, butterflies and other insects love them too though herb growers recommend that the flowers should be taken off to improve the flavour. I put up with the milder flavour and enjoy the flowers! I’m sorry you haven’t had much success with growing food this year so far but in the long run the improved soil and good compost will make for good food in the future I hope. 🙂

  2. streepie says:

    Lemon balm and mint all over the garden are not a bad thing, as Clare has pointed out!

    You can also use the lemon balm and mint to make a refreshing lemonade – you need one or two large handfuls of lemon balm or mint leaves, the juice of 2 – 3 lemons, 3 – 4 tablespoons of sugar (depending on taste) and about 1l of water.

    Clean the leaves, put them in a large jug, and pour over 1l of boiling water. Add the sugar, leave to cool and then put it in the fridge overnight (or during the day, when you started this in the morning). Strain into a bottle or jug, and add the juice of the lemons. Enjoy with some ice cubes and a sprig of fresh leaves.

    The lemonade keeps in the fridge for a few days.

  3. We had plentiful lemon balm and mint generously spread all over our Newark garden. Culling was essential

  4. I love herbal teas. Yum! It looks lovely, Helen.

  5. Karen says:

    Helen, have you ever added chive blossoms to a bottle of vinegar. I turns a lovely color and the vinegar has a mild chive flavor.

    • Helen says:

      Yes, I have Karen, but thank you very much for the question. I generally eat the blooms with salad, as I love their oniony tasty.

I love to read about your own experiences and any other feedback you have, so look forward to your comments below.

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