Wednesday, May 23, 2007

peacocks & herbs (repost with photos)

This past weekend
Kingwood Center held their spring herb sale, so Coop, my niece Jenni, (who lives nearby and is like a daughter to me) and I took a trip over this morning. If you live in Ohio in proximity to Richland County, Kingwood is a place you’ll want to visit often. It’s a gorgeous 47 acre former estate garden brimming with flora and fauna amidst the bustle of Mansfield, Ohio. It’s free and open to the public year round. I have been there many times and will return many more. In fact, June is a highlight for me when the myriad of roses come into bloom. There are about 500 roses in bloom between June and September that result in thousands of blooms in every imaginable color and scent.

I was smart enough to take my camera along this morning and capture a few photos of Mr. India Blue Peacock. Along with photos (which should be showing up here but seem not to be) I came home from the sale with a few herbs; lemon verbena, woodruff, chocolate mint, hot and spicy oregano and bronze fennel. I thought the hot and spicy oregano would be a nice addition to some of my sauces and salsas this year! Can’t wait! I use a lot of oregano in my cooking anyhow, so this will be fun to try. The bronze fennel I was thrilled to find. I do like fennel seeds, especially mixed into sausages and spaghetti sauce, but the beauty of bronze fennel is exquisite. At least I think so, with its feathery fronds of bronze. I would plant it whether it was culinary or not, due to its eye appeal. The chocolate mint is deliciously chocolate and minty, of course! I have grown it before and it is a deep green mint that is very eye appealing, too. The lemon verbena…mmmmm, the scent alone is worth its presence in the garden. I like to add it to my herb tea blends, hot or cold. And the sweet woodruff will be a nice addition as a garnish or to add to teas, also. All in all, a nice little start to my herbal garden.

Towards the end of the month Jenni and I will be going to Quail Crest Farm in nearby Wayne County, Ohio to browse more herbs. I am really looking forward to that and spending the day with her.

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