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Rosemary Indoors

I am having a lot of fun with rosemary. It is one of my favorite herbs to grow in our garden. I started rosemary in 2020 and I fell in love. Have you ever just taken your face and moved your face between their leaves? It is the greatest experience.

Also this is another perennial for my area. One thing I learned is that perennial doesn’t mean that it will live forever. It only gives the promise of three or more years. The more you know, right?

Rosemary is evergreen that boosts the immune system and helps blood circulation. This plant is high in antioxidants, improves digestion, enhancing memory and concentration, neurological protection, protection against macula degeneration, and many other amazing uses. They have this disclaimer that says: do not bulk up on rosemary and try to just eat all of it. Eating rosemary in bulk can put you into a coma and many other not so cool side effects.

This has been one of the easiest herbs that I have been able to grow. Rosemary can get between 1.5 and 3 meters tall- which is awesome. It can be used as an anti fungal remedy as well.

Fun Fact: this is a beneficial herb to help prevent scurvy and certain cancers.

I love that it is one of the many herbs that grows well in containers. I enjoy the smell and that is an evergreen. It is so pretty. Smells good, tastes good in food and has all of the benefits a humble farmer could want. It makes an excellent border shrub and repels certain insects.

I have dried out a large amount of rosemary and I am really excited about grinding it down. I have been making it into a powder and putting them in cork bottles. One day I plan on doing a lot with it. Unfortunately, my plants aren’t producing large quantities of rosemary just yet.

I have been thinking of it’s uses because I do not use powdered rosemary for cooking. Who knows, but the uses are endless.

Not recommended for women who are pregnant, nursing or wish to become pregnant. If you are taking medications that are prescribed or provide long term medical care always consult a physician before adding rosemary to your diet on a regular basis- as in more than 4 nights a week.

Just putting that out there so that if people see it prevents cancer they don’t eat three pounds, put themselves in a coma then sue me. I don’t have time for all of that nonsense.

Just know rosemary is easy to grow, does well against cats using it as camouflage to attack one another and my children love running their fingers through it and it doesn’t die. I can forget to water it and it doesn’t act dramatic.


Project Grow Your Roots: I love Plants

Contributed by Ann Millington

These are her Osteospermums. She took this picture in April. They are so happy in her green house.

These flowers are better known as African Daisies, I had to look it up because I couldn’t pronounce that. I didn’t find any benefit other than looks but it is still a win in my book.

Contributed by Tina Hitchens

She let’s us know this is a pomegranate tree from Granada, Spain. She say the birds love the fruit, which I don’t doubt it is a magnificent tree.

Fun fact I learned from our contributer: the word for pomegranate in Spanish is Granada and has beautiful red flowers.

This gets me excited about my own pomegranate trees. I hate having to wait for things to happen.

Contributed by Alison Maparura

While sharing her plants she said, “2020 – when things go wrong find the little left that gives hope, nurture it and watch it grow. Wishing you, yours and my tradescantia a happy and healthy 2021.” We appreciate the warm wishes and our homestead wishes you the same.

This is also called a Spiderwort. This is a perennial flower and allegedly can be grown in any part of the United States. Western spiderwort is considered an endangered species in Canada.

Native Americans may have used this go relieve stomach problems. I don’t know for sure, I’m not an expert but it’s on the interweb so you can find it yourself if you want more specific information.

Fun fact: the flowers are blue but if they turn pink it is because of radiation levels. These flowers can be used as a bioassay, how you determine potency in a substance, to measure radiation levels. I thought that was a cool cookie.

Contributed by Susan Lowrie

Delphiniums come in lots of colors and are perennials as well. They are not are not for my zone. Only to 7… I am disappointed, but they are cool to learn about. All flowers are toxic to humans and livestock and is also known as Larkspur. These flowers can be used to make a dye.

Zone 8a: Pear Trees

I have heard good things about growing pears in my zone. A couple of my neighbors have some pear trees growing here and there. I know that they can grow in my area and rumor has it they do super well.

Our list of pears that fair well in zone 8a:

1) Kieffer Pear– they do well from 4 to 9 and do well in heat. This tree has a fast growth rate and can grow up to 2 whole feet a year. (I wish I knew the metric system). Yields in September and October, and is self furtile, but they encourage you to plant your pears in pairs just in case.

2) Shinseiki Asian Pear– this pear is preferred by people who like granny smith apples. They are usually imported from Japan (which I thought was cool). This pear tree fruits from July to August and enjoys having friend pear trees to produce.

3) 20th Century Nijisseiki Asia– this is another gem from Japan. This one is a late bloomer and will start to produce after 7 to 10 years. This pear is so popular in Japan that the first tree was declared a national monument in 1935. It’s original name was also Shin Haidaku and that was changed earlier in 1904.

4) D’Anjou Pear– this pear ends in zone 8. It is drought and cold resistant. This pear is not a heavy producer and is said to be primarily decorative and need a small orchard to produce. They attract pollunators and are harvestable in September. (It was also said to be sweet and juicy, for your own records)

5) Summercrisp Pear– these pear trees are bushy and are said to be healthier if you see barely any bark. I thought that was neat. This one is a dwarf tree and is resistent to fireblight.

6) Comica Pear – this pear has a redish blush and is called the sweetest of all pears. Kind of like the fairest in the land. It grows well in our area and is supposed to be one of the juicier pear types.

7) Bosc Pear– this one is a tan/brown, grows fast and harvests in September. This is a hardy tree. The fruit is large and they say it is one of the spicier pears.

8) Hosui Asian Pear– this grand producer. It is drought tolerant but produces better with regular water. Another fireblight resistant. When paired with New Century they allegedly produce better as well

9) New Century Asian Pear– the fruit is round and reminds me more of a pear colored apple. These pears ripen in late August.

10) Bartlett Pear– this is a dwarf pear tree and is the number one pear tree in the world. It is shorter with a spicier pear taste.

11) Moonglow Pear– this one is a strong pollinator for other pear trees. It produces in September and is juicy.

I’ll have to separate them soon

12) Seckle Pear– a desert pear, sweet and a bit spicy this pear is good for canning or fresh. It is also resistant to fireblight. They have small tye dyed brown fruit that produce mid September. It takes 4 to 6 years to produce fruit.

13) Starking Delicious Pear– fruit keeps well in a refrigerator, and is another strong pollinator for other pear trees. It is harvested in August and is allegedly a sweet pear.

14) Honeysweet Pear– harvesting in early September and a self pollinating pear this beautiful tree. The stark Brothers said, “sweet like honey”, whatever that means about sweetness.

Who knows what these are

15) Peggy Asian Pear– it takes 4 to 6 years to produce. This one was discovered in 2003, he named the pear after his wife. It blooms in late August early September. It’s juicy and sweet, which is great in a pear.

16) Chojuro Pear– definitely look like pear colored apples. They alleged it has a butterscotch flavor and like many others originated in Japan.

All pears require full sun. No exceptions and most need pollunators. Sure some self pollinate but they produce better with friends. I didn’t know there were so many but I can’t wait to plant them all.

This is exciting news and I can’t wait to find out what is going to grow in 8a next. This is super exciting.

New groundcover: Trailing Lantana

First, let me start by saying excellent name. When I tell people I am planting lantana they are always curious to what it does and why I am adding it because it sounds exotic and exciting.

“I am going to Lantana.”

“Lantana and I went for a ride.”

Sounds romantic, right? Lantana just sounds like some sort of adventure. I bought this plant specifically for it’s name and found out later that it is useful. Moments like these I like to pat myself on the back.

Regardless, Lantana is not just going to be beautiful with purple and white blooms but she is also very useful. When deciding where it plant her I had a bit of a dilemma because allegedly she spreads like a bad virus. I am surprised she is not a member of the mint family.

They are able to spread so fast because eating their leaves can be poisonous to most animals. They are beneficial in a butterfly garden and are considered useful honey plants. These are things to keep in mind when I plant things. Yes, I like bees but do I want them close to my house?

I need more pollinators attracted to the area but I do not want them at my front door making hives.

Also I like to have monarch butterflies close. I grow a big chunk of our property in these ugly weeds for them. I like watching them flutter around while I plant things and water things

This is, of course, is Trailing lantana and is not useful when you are starting a herb garden but keeping plants like these will benefit your garden in other ways.

So I decided to plant it on this mound that was sitting next to my autumn sage and my ligustrum. I thought this was a good place because it is where I have planted my other bee and hummingbird attractors.

I do know i have seen hummingbirds over there and they are loving these plants that are being planted. I figure if I plant it over here it might deter other animals from destroying anything over here.

Plus, I really enjoy the ground cover aspect. I hate the ugly brown grass that grows over here. I was a multicolored green oasis, but it takes time.

I am very impatient, but I know that planting small things like this will surely invite pollinators to my property. In two to three years I will be adding bee hives, but for now I would just like to invite them closer so that they are able to prepare for my fancy new bee hives that I am saving up for.

Again, I bought more than two so that they would have a homie to spend their time with. Together they will create more lantanas and we will attract all of the bees and butterflies.