Bridget

Posts Tagged ‘parsley’

On Butterflies and garden progress.

In Garden, herbal remedies, sustainable living on April 27, 2012 at 9:52 am

 

The Peacock Butterflies are out of hibernation now, I saw this one on the lane drinking from a Dandelion. Could’nt get close enough for a better photo, it took several attempts to get this one. It is a bit better if you click on it to enlarge. The favoured place for Peacocks to lay their eggs is on Nettles so if you have a patch of Nettles leave them for the Butterflies. They need to be in a sunny spot though. Do of course have the fresh tops for soup…very nutritious and an old remedy for cleansing the blood in Spring.

 

In the garden the Raspberries are at last starting to spread. They were planted 2 years ago and have’nt done much up to now. Thigs are looking good for this year…lots of flower buds. Fresh Raspberries…bliss!

 

In the polytunnel the beds are filling up with transplants. Growth is slow enough as the night’s are still quite cold.

 

With good planning it is possible to have salad crops all year round. These red Lettuces ready for picking now were planted last August. They don’t make much growth over the Winter as our polytunnel is unheated but once Spring comes they take off again. Having fresh salads is a big priority for us as we eat a lot of salad…in all seasons. I never buy supermarket salads as Lettuce is one of the most sprayed crops grown commmercially. I remember reading once that the average Lettuce is sprayed on average 22 times in it’s short forced-grown life. Washing does not remove these poisons…for that is what they are…and then it is eaten raw.

 

Pot Marigolds or Calendula are flowering early in the polytunnel. I love their cheery faces. The whole plant is edible but I find the leaves a bit coarse so I only use the petals which look lovely decorating a salad. The petals also make a soothing eyewash and a salve can be made can also be made from them. It is very good for cuts, grazes and rashes.

 

 A handful of Lettuce leaves and Parsley to make the evening salad…with a nice dressing to accompany it makes a fitting complement to any meal. Topped off of course with a Spring Onion and a scattering of Marigold petals. Art, happiness and Nature’s Bounty on a plate at the end of the day. Perfect!

October @ Prospect Cottage.

In Cooking, Gardening on October 3, 2011 at 3:40 pm

Asters or Michaelmas Daisy as they are known are the real stars of the flower garden right now. Don’t know the individual varieties…the labels are long gone but that does’nt take from the enjoyment of these gorgeous Autumn flowers.

Asters can be propogated easily by division of clumps in Autumn or Spring. Usually the centre of clumps deteriorate so only the healthy outer sections are replanted. They thrive best in a well drained situation. I love the colour of this purple one.

Tomatoes are still ripening in the polytunnel. The small ones are Mexican Midget, the larger ones are Moneymaker and the yellow ones are Amber which self seeded from our own compost. A welcome bonus. Tomato soup from this lot I think.

Parsley is a plant we grow lots of, it is a nutrient powerhouse containing beta carotene, vitamin B12, chlorophyll, calcium and more vitamin C than citrus fruits. In addition to providing essential nutrients Parsley stimulates and balances the energy of our internal organs and improves their ability to assimilate and utilise nutrients. Because of its high enzyme content Parsley benifits digestive activity. We use Parsley raw in salads, add it to mashed potato and put it in at the end of cooking soups and stews. A tea made from Parsley is said to be useful against cystitis and urinary tract infections. A true superfood.

To the north of the house the Birch trees have already lost their leaves. I suspect Winter is coming early this year. The Met Office is forecasting snow at the end of October! We have lots of supplies in the larder so are fairly well prepared. Hay is also stored for the animals plus lots of fuel to keep the house toasty. The nights are quickly becoming much longer so more time will be spent indoors. It is the time when I use the fruits and veg stored throughout the Summer to make jams and chutneys. Today we can see blue sky through the trees so there is still Autumn days to be enjoyed.