What's popping up in your gardens!!!

April 27, 2009


I purchased these "star" candles on my shopping excursion on Wednesday....they have a battery tea lite molded into them. When you sit them in water they light up and when you take them out...they go off. How cool is that!!!! I added some Lemon Balm to some water in a bowl and added the star light candle - I think I should add some flower petals too....how pretty and what a nice centerpiece for your table. A customer already wants some for her fish pond....I need to order more!!!

April 25, 2009


I received my box of "culinary lavender" from Susan of Henny Penny's Country Store....it is wonderful Susan. She packaged it in clear cello bags and tied the bags with two pretty shades of lavender ribbon. I have made a small tag and will get the lavender in the store today.....NOW customers will have a source for the culinary lavender when making Lavender Pound Cake, Lavender Sugar....and my next NEW recipe....Lavender Egg Salad......(stop squinching your nose!!) Everything I have ever used lavender in has been delish.....the secret is NOT to OVERDO any herb in a recipe. The Lavender Egg Salad recipe was posted on the Rosemary House Blog last year and now I will try it and see if it is something I will make for the Herb Faire.....when I find the recipe I will post it for all to try.

April 21, 2009


Advertise your herbal "going on's" on the side just like I did.....if you need some help just holler...Good way to get the "word" out on what we sell in the way of herbs and herbal delights!

April 20, 2009


Susan - just seeing your bay plant is encouraging me to try again....the bay plants we sell are very small....and costs $5.....so I don't order very many - as I can't give good instructions on how to keep it alive...LOL!! Just look at yours...it is so happy in it's new home!
We have our Herb Faire the same time as Landis Valley so I have never been able to go to it...but I do hear it is great! We sell herb plants every year.....and I use to call the "event" Miss Violet's Ladybug Tea Party.....well that was misleading to some and they wanted to make reservations for the "Tea"...so after a few years of trying to explain we now call it our "Herb Faire"....not a faire at all....just the time when we start selling the plants and our garden treasures...always the first Wednesday in May. That week I make lots of yummy herb goodies - for everyone to sample. We have a nice side yard where I can sell the herbs - and I do think we sell the best on the market! Last year it poured and poured and poured but luckily we have a back and front porch to the store and we kept the flats of herbs under roof....keeping my fingers crossed for a week of pure sunshine !!
I didn't expect to see any customers that first day but thank goodness for true loyal customers...Linda came with her boxes and winter coat.....looking forward to much better weather this year! Picture is of back porch...the next pictures are herbs on the front porch... You can see that nice side yard in one of the pics...it was a swamp that week !!!

...and of course the basil had to stay indoors.....

BAY LAUREL, Herb of the Year 2009

Here is a picture for you, Judy, of my bay. I over wintered it indoors in a south window, but because the window was under a porch the bay just sat and didn't grow at all. When I moved to the new shop I had to put my tender perrenials in an east facing window. See the light green on the tips of all the branches, that is one months new growth. I also have a passionflower vine that was just a bunch of sticks in the pot and once I put it in the east window it grew 6 ft. (YES----FEET) in one month. I don't water very often, usually just whenever I remember. But now that the plants are growing, I will try to water every 4-5 days.

Saturday was the bi-annual Beaver Run School auction. It is put on by the Amish community and there is so much stuff that they have to have at least 6 auctioneers. This was the first time I went and I will never go again. Judging by the bids, you would not know that a recession was going on. These people were paying $3 for one petunia plant in a 3" pot. I go to auctions to get things cheaper. I can go to the local nursery and get a 6-pk. of petunias for $1.89. All I could think of all day is "What are these people thinking?" There was even one amish girl that paid $5 for a 6" tomato plant and she had to buy 6 at a time. I think I got the deal of the day.....I bought rhubarb plants and paid $4 per 12" pot and there were at least 4 plants per pot, also had to buy 4 pots at a time. Anyways, my next post or so I will put on a picture of the rhubarb along with a recipe for rhubarb punch.

I did a lot of raking the past couple days. And then took some before pics of the garden areas that I plan to plant this spring. Once the gardens are planted and growing, I'll post some before and after pics. Mother's Day weekend in Lancaster County, the Landis Valley Museum has an annal Herb Faire. I have been going every year for the last 10 or so. I can usually find the standard herbs and some unusal ones too that I cannot normally find wholesale. This Herb Faire is the Fri and Sat before Mother's Day.

These are some grunged up tulips I made with a little peep on a pole. Displayed in enamelware, of course.

April 18, 2009


Thought I would post a BEFORE picture of the herb garden at the store.....I did spend alittle time this afternoon cleaning up some of the leaves....they just gather here!! Lemon Balm, Italian Oregano, Golden Oregano and Lavender are all peeking their little stems through the leaves.....Feverfew is growing like a weed....(some people call it a weed)...but not me ...I love the pretty daisy like flowers it produces and I dry bouquets of them. Also growing like a "weed" is the Catnip....never ever plant catnip near your herb garden...it comes up all over the place. The one nice thing about having "catnip" handy is I share it with all my "cat lover" customers....
I would like to introduce you to "Miss Lizzie Tish".....she takes up residence here in the herb garden all year round...soon she won't have to wear her sweater and I think some new clothes would be a nice gift as she does such a great job keeping watch over the garden.
Miss Lizzie has some friends visiting this summer and I know some of them would love to go home with you....be sure to come to our Herb Faire and meet them.

April 17, 2009


The lemon balm in our herb garden is peeking thru the leaves that have YET to be cleaned up...NEVER ENOUGH THYME and when there is, it is raining.....!!! This weekend for sure the gardens will get done. I love Lemon Balm but have to admit I don't use it much for anything other than filling vases and drying to hang - You can make "lemon water" by steeping some in a pot - bring to boil and then let cool in pot....strain and add it to a spritz bottle - keep in refrigerator....When it is HOT - a little "spritz" will be quite enjoyable - perfect to spritz right under the chin!! Lemon Balm will take over like MINT....so becareful where you plant it....(mine is right smack in the middle of the garden and needs to be pulled out constantly)...although that is a "pleasant task" !!
Anyone use lemon balm for anything else??? Come on gals ....join in the discussions...we all want to hear what you have to say - POST POST POST !!!

April 16, 2009

Lemon Balm

Can you feel it? Feel the excitement in my writing? OH I am so happy, the rain has stopped here in Central Pa and it promises to be a great weekend.
I know what I will be doing this weekend..getting my hands dirty..I am working in the gardens this weekend..FINALLY! The sun is shining through some morning fog...so nice to see the sun...we did need the rain though...everything is turning green..so excited. Ok enough of my excitement....I have lots of Lemon Balm in my garden. I need some recipes and suggestions for using this wonderful herb....care to share? Thanks...and may all of you have a wonderful weekend.

April 13, 2009


Just a bit of info on the 2009 Herb of the Year......Some people have great luck with this plant when they bring it indoors....my friend's plant was a TREE !!! She kept it in her sunroom - there is NOTHING like a fresh bay leaf !!

****The Part Used:
It is the leaves of bay that have the flavoring properties. The plant is a tree that came originally from Asia Minor but was quickly spread around the Mediterranean and beyond. Supposedly the Oracle at Delphi chewed bay leaves and inhaled the smoke of the burning leaves of bay to induce her visions. Bay, and laurel, were worn as wreaths on the head for protection, as an honor for being victorious in sports and battle. (The association with honor continues to this day, as we have poet laureates and the word baccalureate means laurel berries, signifying the completion of a bachelor's degree.
****Uses:Bay leaves have long been used in flour and grain to keep pantry moths out. Medicinally, it has a long history of being used for treating high blood sugar, migraines, bacterial and fungal infections. Bay leaves and berries have been used as an astringent, carminative digestive and emetic properties. The oil (bay oil or oil of bays Oleum Lauri) has been used in bruise and sprain liniments and salves.
We sell this plant during our Herb Faire....it is a bit more $$$'s than the other herbs....but well worth it!

April 10, 2009


That is a title of a book all about fairies....I can't find a copy anywhere - my friend Kathy Wright (who now lives in Kentucky) taught me how to make a fairy garden before she moved.....and when she couldn't find the book she PHOTOCOPIED her whole book for me.....(I have the sweetest and most generous friends in all the world) !! This book has given me so much fun! We give two classes each year making a fairy garden. This is our 11th year of giving this class....RAIN or SHINE we have them outside.....under a tent.....Last year Class 1, it stormed and stormed.....we were able to get the gardens made and then we had lunch (yeppers lunch is included) in the workshop room of the store attached to ours ( we have access thru a door on the second floor)...Kay was so kind to let us eat up there !! The second class....oh my it was hot as (well use your imagination) !! When we ate I brought a fan outside to at least move the air around.....those poor girls !! We had lots of fun inspite of the weather....and can't wait to have them again this year.....look at the pictures....can you see any fairies ????

April 9, 2009


Oh it is getting hard to have PATIENCE...I want to get out in the dirt and get some much needed therapy...getting my hands dirty working in my gardens is so therapeutic...why is old man winter still hanging on?This stepping stone is in my herb garden. I thought I would share some "before" pictures of my herb garden...this is how it looked this morning...I notice my lemon balm is greening up. Tonya mentioned about mint and how it can take over a garden..same thing as my Lemon Balm..I planted one small plant 4 years ago and it has spread...but if I am not happy with it.. I just pull some of it all and try to manage it..I never mind plants that spread and take over..I just pulled out what I don't need...My Aunt who is a avid gardener shares the same feelings..she just pulls out or GENTLTY REMOVES the intruding plant and moves it somewhere else in her garden or pots it up and gives it to a friend. If you really want to keep a plant like mint contained you can plant it in an old half whiskey barrel...I have done that before and I like the look of plants in the barrel. Judy also mentioned about doing it like this, too.

I also noticed this morning my Sweet Woodruff looking very nice! I love this plant..love the smell! It is a shade loving plant but mine seems to be doing ok in my garden which gets a good deal of light.
I wanted to take a picture of my Rosemary plant but it wasn't showing up too well on my camera...I did notice some GREEN on the plant..SO Excited! Last winter my Rosemary survived the winter...It is a tender periennal here in Central Pa..but it survived and I am keeping my fingers crossed that it survived again!
I hope you all share pictures..I am so happy that Judy started this blog...THANK YOU JUDY!!!!
Here are some Before pictures of my kitchen herb garden. When things start to grow and fill in I will share more pictures.



Sometimes I get asked what is my favorite herb.....usually I answer "DILL" as I just love the flavor - and it is a cool looking plant. I always let it go to seed (much to hubby's dismay) as it pops up all over the place.....but it is easy to (heaven's forbid) pull out if it is in the way of another plant. The wind just carries the seeds here - there and everywhere ! It is not a herb you can dry for "hanging".....but I do dry it and crumbled it up to put in a jar. Sprinkling it on a salad or chicken is delish ! ( I don't eat anything from the water however they tell me it is great with (yuck) fish) !! I usually get at the very least, two crops each summer.....customers come and pick it right from the gardens as I could never use as much as we get. That is what growing herbs is all about....sharing !
The picture is of my "rosemary plant" THREE years olde....it likes this windowsill at the store...I have never been able to grow it at home ??? All thru the year I take little snippets of the plant to put in little "sprig" bottles that we sell.

April 8, 2009


MINT.....yikes.....although I love mint it can be a nuisance - it spreads and spreads and will choke out your other herbs if not contained. You most certainly can grow it in a pot but if you want a nice crop make sure you transplant, as it grows, into a larger pot.....you can also plant one of those large plastic pots you purchase plants in right into the ground and that will contain the plant.....I have mint - peppermint, ginger mint and pineapple mint growing in a half wine barrel at the store...I am not sure it will return this year but I will just plant more....I use it mostly for bouquets or drying to hang.....but mint tea is pretty good too!
Anyone have some more info on MINT ??? Please post..... Judy

April 7, 2009


Okay....I am at it again.....another "blog"....it is that time of year again when I play "Garden House"....(a wannabee herbalist that hasn't any time to be one).....so I PRETEND. I love herbs...everything about them - how they taste, how they smell and how beautiful they look - fascinating plants to say the very least !!
We have an "Herb Faire" every Mother's Day week at The Cinnamon Stick....where we sell hundreds of the best herbs on the market. All our herbs are grown by a husband and wife in Lancaster County. They have two greenhouses and only wholesale ! Each plant is lovingly grown from seeds and cuttings of existing plants. Just one 3" pot of thyme gets FOUR individual plantings before it comes to the store....
I can't explain the feeling you get when you walk into the greenhouses. Enchanting is a good word - as you get lost in the scents of damp earth and aromas of the herbs all blended together.
I am hoping we can get lots of "herb gardeners" - beginners to herbalist - to join in this blog and post about their experiences and how tos and recipes and everything about herbs....Post questions that anyone can answer if they can - share pictures of their gardens, garden treasures and everything else.
Just email me at - cinnamonstick@comcast.net for the sign in information....then everyone who wishes can join in....all the usual guidelines will be followed about being nice and all that...I think this can be fun....no obligation to post or share - but hope everyone will. I am a novice....but I will tell you all about my fairy gardens.....woohoo!!!