What's popping up in your gardens!!!

June 29, 2009


The Borage is in blossom.
With its beautiful blue flowers, this herb is a wonderful addition to your collection!
Besides, it's super easy to grow and makes tons of babies that you can share with other gardener friends :)

We sell the dried leaves at the shop, it's very popular for treating styes & other ailments~

Happy Gardening!

June 27, 2009


I used a clear glass bowl inside this old enamel pot that belonged to my significant others grandmother. This punch is so good and easy to make. Please visit my blog (hennypennyscountrystore.blogspot.com) for the recipe. I also have diced rhubarb fresh frozen in 2 lb. packs for sale in the shop. I have rhubarb punch made to sample in the shop this weekend, June 26 & 27, and next July 3 & 4. Hope y' all can come by and visit.


My thyme plant has a lot of blossoms but it is very spindly. I better amend the soil---just wait til you see the next picture. And I'm wondering where all the bees are! I want to do a flagstone path around the shop and fill in-between with thyme (mother-of-thyme?) plants and never did because of the bees. I won't have to worry about that now, will I?Here is that other picture I mentioned above! What a sorry sight. This is really a tomato plant.
All there is is a stem and a yellowed leaf and a tomato. I wonder if it is safe to eat! I planted 4 tomato plants in this garden and 2 look like this. The other 2 look a little better but not much. I'm wondering if the mulch I put on is too strong. We got a huge load of horsemanure that has wood chips mixed in. Maybe it needs to age more. We have had the manure for a good 9 months now, and I thought that would be enough aging time. Oh well, garden and learn---I always say!

Comfrey & Lovage~

Your Comfrey & Lovage Plants bring back memories!!
My mother is a medical herbalist and I grew up with lots of common (and not so common) herbs growing in the gardens~

Comfrey (Symphytum officinale) has always been a very important herb for healing. We've used it for over 30 years in our "Magic Healing Salve" and mom always brought in a few leaves to her students for herb identification. She would show them a Comfrey leaf and a Foxglove leaf and see if they could identify which one was which. Most students couldn't tell the difference~ Her point was that if you mistake Foxglove for Comfrey you could become very sick. She would tell the story of an old couple that thought they were cook'n up a big pot of Comfrey tea, when actually they were using Foxglove leaves and they both died.....Don't know if the story was true but it always got thru to the students how important Herb identification is :)

Mom had a Comfrey plant growing that was actually named "Humpfrey"
If your going to plant comfrey you better plant it where you want it to grow forever because you can NEVER transplant it! It will always come back in that original spot~
Humpfrey was dug up many times and still managed to pop up again, the only thing that stopped "him" from growing was building an addition onto the house and covering him up for good!
Poor Humpfrey :)

June 25, 2009


This is my son Cody the Snakehunter. Our old farmhouse sat empty for 9 or so years before we bought it and there are a few old gardens scattered about. I have been trying to clear them out little by little, looking for salvageable herbs and flowers. I found lemonbalm, grapevine (there's even an arbor), elderberry, daylilies, daffies and a snake in this one. This snake is probably just a common garden variety, I didn't get a good look at it, but I'm guessing it's 3-4 feet long. Well, the plants are 2-3 feet tall and Cody is using an old garden tool moving the plants around trying to find the snake. It must have slithered away---we never saw it again. So anyways, when we first moved here a small snake used to sun itself on the backporch which is only 4 feet from the garden. My guess is that this little snake has grown up. I also found (in another garden) raspberries growing wild in with my feverfew. I don't know what happened but the feverfew has grown 4 feet tall this year. And in yet another wild garden, the church groundskeeper did some weedeating and chopped 15-20 berry plants down to the ground. Well, they grew again and I dug them up yesterday and will make a new berry patch somewhere else. A row of bright yellow yarrow ready for cutting and drying. These will also rebloom again for more dried bunches.

I love this herb, its called comfrey. Russian comfrey to be exact. It bushes out at the bottom and makes a nice clump. Then the flower spikes grow another foot or 2 taller. I have used this plant as a hedge around an herb bed before.

Has anyone ever used lovage? This herb is the PERENIAL answer to celery. It grows as a big clump and then the flower spikes grow to 8 feet tall. The flowers look like the wild carrot flowers that are blooming now along the roadsides. The lovage leaves are great to use for celery flavor in soups and dips and on sandwiches. Sometimes fresh herbs are too strong to eat whole leaves but not lovage. If you use the leaves in soup, you have to add the leaves towards the end of the cooking time, otherwise the flavor cooks away. The stems are real thick and hollow, they make great straws (especially in Bloody Marys). This spring I didn't have a chance to pot any babies to sell----but----its not too late yet. I am going to transplant this big plant soon and will pot some up then.

June 21, 2009


Sorry to be such a downer but geez oh man.....enough with the wet stuff! The yard has deep ruts in it where the mower wheels just sunk into the mud. The herbs (and weeds) are growing TOO FAST - except my dill.....I don't think he likes this weather at all. AND poor Rosemary - she doesn't like to get her feet wet as it is....and is standing in puddles!!! The only good thing is that the weeds will be easy to pull out!!!
I love your Lady's Mantle Andrea....I think Ginny has a nice patch planted too.....I wanted to get some plants this year and completely forgot....I think the flowers are so beautiful...the color is so unique..a pretty yellow-green...and what beautiful "herbal bouquets" they make !
The wild "tiger lilys" are blooming all along our roadsides and I think they love the rain!!!
I started to harvest some of the herbs from the garden at the store.....I love this herb rack that Tony made ( I have them in the store for sale)...it was on the cover of the October, 1983 Country Living magazine and I fell "ga-ga" over it ! Tony made me one for the house (way back then) and now I have some at the store....!!!

June 17, 2009

Lady's Mantle

Morning Everyone~

Love the "Fairy Dust" Judy!

I was out in the Gardens this morning and thought I'd share a few pics with you~

The Lady's Mantle is is bloom~

This herb looks beautiful cascading over a stone wall or edging a Garden! I use it a lot in the background when I'm taking pictures of my Beauty products. It reminds me of something you'd see in the old Victorian Gardens~ Real easy to grow too!

Here's another herb that I absolutely LOVE! This Thyme is called "Ruby Glow"~
This is the second year it's come up and so far it's been very hardy, filled with compact leaves & FULL of bright "ruby" colored blossoms~

Thanks for letting me share~

June 14, 2009


Fairy Garden
Hi Anne.....I think my fairies wanted to meet yours.....
I have to get busy and get the lavender harvested too....I was hoping to try my hand at making a lavender wand.....don't know why I think this is so difficult when the directions seem so easy....Might do that tomorrow too !!!

Hi Everyone

Thanks for the nice welcome Judy. :)

We had quite a bit of rain here in CT too last week. My gardens look nice and green though and everything is thriving, including lots of weeds. I love to take pictures of my gardens so I hope to share a lot in the future. I've never shared on a group blog like this before so until I learn my way around here better I'll just share this one picture for now. These are the two little fairies that I found hiding in my lavender.

This picture was taken a few weeks ago, and now all my lavender plants are in bloom. I picked some this morning and added them to a vase with some roses. Oh my they smell lovely. I'll gather more during the week for drying.

June 13, 2009


Hi Everyone....Anne from Backyard Treasures has just joined our blog....HI ANNE and WELCOME...do you have some pics to share???
Oh my as I sit here and type I am watching a baby bunny eat my parsley....he is so cute....it is a big patch so I will share it with him.....!!! ooopsss...there he goes !!!
My herb garden is completely out of control now...today we had lots of sunshine in the morning and then the rains came...flooding downpours....it is still raining. I don't mind a summer drizzle but this is getting olde !! IF (and that is a big if) it is not raining tomorrow I will just cut down the lemon balm and feverfew - sage is not quite ready...and the mint and hang it to dry. I have a nice batch of catmint too...I want to get it before it flowers and goes to seed ! It is a bit frustrating right now. And I am sure the rain has beat down the dill....I did pick some yesterday- I love dill in my salads.
Andrea.....I am sick I didn't pick the larkspur...it looks so pretty in the flower beds....but I wanted to dry it for potpourri....and this rain today...YIKES !! If it is still standing tomorrow and not bare of flowers....I am picking it for sure!!!!

June 12, 2009


RAIN RAIN RAIN....HOT HOT HOT....MUGGY AND DAMP !! One minute the herbs are just about growing and the next they are on their way to flower....hard to keep up with everything! I harvested some Italian oregano, golden oregano, dill and lavender today - and put them in a pot of water to sell. (the golden oregano already sold) !!

Here is a picture of the Fairy Garden I made in class on Saturday....I have so much fun doing these classes !! Planted is Rosemary, Oregano and Mother of Thyme (the fairies favorite!)

June 11, 2009


Same thing is happening with my Peonies! I've been meaning to cut them and hang them to dry, but of course they looked too pretty and now it's raining and they are soaked~ they'll probably turn brown soon too :(

Another thing about the Larkspur (or anything you dry) it looks great sprinkled inside a gift basket or in with items that are packaged in cellophane. Sometimes it's the perfect "finishing touch"

Yes, I wholesale my potpourri. Feel free to contact me thru my website and I'll set up a wholesale account for you. Or I'd be happy to send you an old fashioned "Print" catalog~



Andrea - your Crow Potpourri is beautiful....I can't believe I never thought of drying just the flowers - I usually make bunches and haven't made my own potpourri in "forever and a day" ! I did pick lots of lavender stems on Sunday and have them drying....but missed the one plant as it wasn't ready Sunday and by the time I got back to the store yesterday it had flowered....can harvest a few stems - but now we are having RAIN AGAIN !!
Do you wholesale your potpourri??? Judy

June 10, 2009

Dried Larkspur

Beautiful Larkspur Judy!
If you've never dried the flowers ~ you should try it!
They really keep their bright blue color! I have them in my Country Crow Potpourri :)



The Larkspur is starting to bloom in the front gardens at the store....it just comes up wherever it pleases! I just found a plant in the herb garden on the other side of the building...!! I am always giving these seeds away so if you want some just holler and I will be sure to gets some to you when they are done blooming. I pick the flowers but they do not last long after doing so....but I love the way they fall onto the table underneath the other blooms....always reminds me of an olde painting. Silly aren't I !!!

June 8, 2009


Hi Herbal friends.....I had to cut my Feverfew this morning as it was all in bloom.....that always makes me sad to cut it down when it looks so pretty. The plants at the store are only in bud stage so I will still have some pretty flowers to make me smile! I also harvested some dwarf sage - I didn't take it all cause I would like to make a base of sage for mini wreaths....it smells so good!
Can you see that little "gnome" hiding in the Feverfew ??? He is so shy and doesn't want his picture taken!!
I hang the herbs to dry on our side enclosed porch (this use to be part of my store when it was in my home many moons ago) You walk into this room when you enter our house (we don't use the front door).....and when the herbs are drying it smells so wonderful! The door goes into my laundry/utility/storage room..... There is only one small window in there so the herbs are away from the sunlight!

June 5, 2009

Valerian Blossoms

My Valerian is Beautiful this Year!!

If anyone has ever taken Valerian Root capsules for sleeping then they know how "stinky" the root is...but the Flower of the Valerian plant has such a Wonderful Sweet Aroma that you'd never know it was the same plant! I grow it outside my windows so that I can smell it in the house.

This is a super easy plant to grow too. It's likes "wet feet" so it will do best where it gets plenty of water. Keep in mind that it grows a good 4-5 feet tall, so I like to plant it behind other herbs or perennials~

Soggy Yards

Good Morning, Yes, Judy I think you did tick off the Big Mom!! But, its sounds like she is going to forgive you tomorrow. Last I checked my feverfew was not blooming yet, that was Monday. It has alot of buds, just no flowers yet. Does anyone know if the flowers can be dried? If so, please post it here or e-mail me @ duckslady@gmail.com . It also looks like my tansy is going to bloom soon as well, plant must be about 3 1/2 to 4 feet tall, we had to tie it up and then prop it up with a piece of antique iron fencing, guess I won't be selling that either, I have go to stop that, I'm suppose to sell the stuff I buy for the business, but it just looks so darn good in the yard! Well, Ladies have a great day and Judy have a good time making those Fairy Gardens.


Oh dear...I must have really "irked" Mother Nature with a few comments....YIKES !!
Please accept my apology Ms. Nature !!!
I wanted to take pics of the feverfew which is just starting to bloom.....maybe tomorrow after the Fairy Garden Class....suppose to be "sunshiny" !!!
******I see that there are a few new gals who have signed up to follow this blog.....would you like to join the group and post along with us ????? Please say yes....the more the merrier !! This is really a learning and sharing blog - and we have some really "knowledgeable" gals on here....(I am not one of them....but enjoy sharing my pictures and adventures and reading about everyone else's and I LOVE pictures of your gardens)...
If you would like to join please email me thru my profile and I will send you an invite.....Judy

June 1, 2009

Hi Everyone!

Thanks for the warm Welcome Judy! I'm looking forward to viewing everyone's garden pictures & comments :)


A post from Crows Nest Primitives Shoppe

Andrea left this comment and since I am (I think) the only one who gets notice when a comment is made I thought I would copy and paste the comment....so it doesn't get missed by all us MINT lovers !!!.....LOL!!

"So Glad to see other Gardener's Appreciating Mints!! I love using Orange, Chocolate & Pineapple Mints in all my Flower Beds. They dry beautifully too. It's a shame that most gardener's are so afraid of the mints "Taking-Over" I say Let them :)Andrea,"

Hopefully Andrea will join our blog and post.....Welcome Andrea !!!

Mint Beds

Okay Judy & Susan, you have now me itching to get into my Spearmint Bed, there are all sorts of things growing in there. So, after dinner I will be heading out side to start pulling out all the things that don't belong there. I also have to plant marigolds in the tomato bed to keep the bugs at bay. Thanks Ladies!!

MORE - Mint to be friends...

Above it a picture of the "curly" mint and apple mint all growing together. This is at the back of our home - it is not as tall as the window makes it look...this part of the house was added on in 1949 and is just made of cinderblock - it is my laundry room (storage room for heater, water tank, and ALL my fabric!!) The window is waist high inside and only knee high on the outside - this part of the house was built lower than the other side - who knows why ???? Another picture of the mint - When I was taking the pictures I found this "curry" plant from last year....I am so excited - my clothes dryer vent is right there and I am sure that is why it wintered over.....This is not the curry that comes from India....but you can use it ...it just is not as "potent" ! The plant does smell divine and can be dried and used in making wreaths etc. That was fun finding the curry - any surprises in your gardens????