How to Dry Sage from Your Garden: Part III.

How to dry sage from your garden.

How to dry sage from your garden.
Learn how and where to make the proper cuts when harvesting sage to dry for bouquets or bundles.

Harvesting Sage for Dried Herb Bouquets Part I.

How to dry sage from your garden.

How to dry sage from your garden.
Learn how and where to make the proper cuts when harvesting sage to dry for bouquets or bundles.

 

In this short tutorial, learn how  and where to cut stems for making herb bundles and bouquets for drying, that you can later use this winter in the kitchen! Sage leaves can be used fresh or dried in the kitchen, and add a lovely savory flavor to roasted chicken, pork chops, and sausage.

Dried sage can be a beautiful addition to dried herb bouquets, and…to correct myself, from what I stated in the video, it could also be used in fresh bouquets, as long as the lower leaves are removed from the parts of the stem that will be under water in the vase.

How to Make a Dried Herb Bouquet Using Sage from Your Garden: Part II.

How to dry sage from your garden.

How to dry sage from your garden.
Learn how and where to make the proper cuts when harvesting sage to dry for bouquets or bundles.

This short video demonstrates how to bundle sage stems into a bouquet that can be hung to dry and later used in dried arrangements, wreaths, or for cooking savory meals.

 

Houseplants: 8 Things to Remember When Bringing Them Indoors For the Winter


Gardenshapers

8 tips for bringing you houseplants indoors in the fall.
Hate saying goodbye to the lush patio plants you lovingly cared for all summer? Learn how to give them a boost before bringing them indoors this fall!

 

8 Things to Remember When Bringing Houseplants Inside for Winter

One of my followers asked me for some tips on how to make her patio tropicals stay happy after she brings them indoors for the winter.  My recommendation would be to:

1.  Slowly reacclimate your plant to your indoor environment at least 2 weeks prior to bringing them in.                                                                                                                               …

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Calculators for Landscape and Concrete Projects

How much concrete should I order?

How much concrete should I order?

I just found a cool website that has a calculator for just about any DIY home project! So cool, I thought I should share!

Here you go!

5https://www.omnicalculator.com/construction#s-5

Scarlet Runner Beans and Cardinal Climber Vines, Unique Flowers and Beautiful Shades of Bright Red


My husband, Tim, also a horticulturist, has always been fascinated with the Cardinal Climber Vine, the pentagonal shaped flower with an embossed star shape of sorts shown sitting in the palm of my hand in the photo on the above left.

I have always been intrigued by the beautiful red Scarlet Runner Bean, above right. This year, Tim, who is so awesome at remembering to plant seeds, got them planted by our front porch step this spring!

Now that I have seen these plants in action, I love them even more! Each flower shape is so unique and intricately detailed! I cannot fathom how such small flowers, each smaller than a quarter, can house such fascinating floral architecture! They are truly miraculous specimens to behold! Especially, if you stop for a moment, to examine them up close, and even dissect them.

I hope to one day, get my hands on a macro lens, so that I can capture the intricate details of flowers. Until then, you’ll just have to plant some yourself, or take my word for it!

Both of these vine type plants can be started from seed, and sown directly into the ground once the soil warms up in the spring. If you are living in the midwest, mid to late May would be a safe bet.

We used some wood blocks, and twine spaced evenly along the block, so that each side of our porch had about 6 strings spaced about 6 inches apart going from the ground up to the balcony above.

The vines quickly germinate, and once the heat and humidity take hold, they grow very quickly, especially, if you water the soil around them regularly.

Keep the soil evenly moist until they germinate, and then once they sprout, water every few days, if rain is not in the near forecast.

I almost lost mine, during extreme heat and drought, but luckily, a good drink of water revived them!

The Zone 4 and 5 Gardener’s To Do List for August/September


Looking for a way to refresh your September garden? Here’s a few easy steps you can take to rejuvenate your outdoor green space!

Gardenshapers

The Zone 4 and 5 Gardener’s To Do List for August/September

As you are about to see, late August/September is all about cutting back.

1. Remove Dead Flower Stalks from Perennials As Daylilies and Irises begin to die back, you can yank out the brown flower stalks, just give them a tug and they should pop right out.

2. Daylilies and Irises: Remove dead and dying leaves with brown tips. With both, you can just grab the leaves at the base of the plant and give a downward and outward tug, and they will come right off. If it’s the end of August, and you can’t stand the way they look anymore, you can remove all or most of the leaves, as these plants are beginning their dormancy anyway. I just removed all the leaves from some of my day lilies 2 weeks ago, Aug 18, and they are…

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How to Root Coleus


Ahhhh, the Coleus….with it’s beautiful, vibrant color combinations, and intricately shaped leaf edgings, it’s no wonder we all wish they could last forever!

If you live in an area that freezes, you know that your coleus plants will not likely make it through the winter outside.  One way to preserve them, would be to build a greenhouse, and heat it all winter, to maintain the tropical climate, that Coleus Plants love.

Not many of us have that kind of cash laying around, so another way to enjoy Coleus a little longer, is to take cuttings and root them.  Coleus stems make beautiful, long lasting accents to end of summer bouquets.  As an added bonus, if you change the water in the vase once or twice a week, you might even get your Coleus stems to take root!

Down below, is a video demonstration that shows where to cut the stems, and what to do with them to get them to take root!  Hope you enjoy!

Work


As I enjoy these last few weeks in my garden, I am reminded of this poem I wrote in 2013. Much has changed in my life since then, but the way I enjoy my flowers the most at this stage in the season, remains unchanged.

Hope you enjoy the little floral photo shoot I did this morning instead of organizing my house after a few busy weeks here at casa de Stephens!  How can one not ignore chores when there is such beauty to behold right at her fingertips?

I was so excited to see my 4’Oclocks, blooming!  They are the Morning Glory shaped flowers that are blue with the yellow and white throat pictured below.

I started them late, like, in June or later, from seed, and they had a rough beginning, and were almost devoured by caterpillars, suffered drought, extreme heat, and neglect while we were on vacation, but they persevered!  So excited to see these colors together!

Gardenshapers

©Marie Stephens 2014  All rights reserved. ©Marie Stephens 2014 All rights reserved.

Work

Always behind

Never caught up

The more work you get done.

The more work you make up.

Weeding

Planting

Staking

Baking

Picking

Pinching

Seeding

Raking

Where did the time go?

Where was it spent?

Tree leaves are falling

On my cement.

Zinnias are gorgeous.

Morning Glories are glorious

One Glory survived,

Now we’re victorious!

The one that survived

and beat all the odds:

Vine chewing rabbits

Seed eating birds

Sprout stomping dogs

My childrens’ feet

Not one of these were able to defeat.

Could not defeat this defiant Morning Glory

This lovely blue flower

That gives me satisfaction and power.

The power to see

That all this work:

The planting

The waiting

The rejuvenating

The digging

The pinching

The pruning

The trimming

Replanting

Reseeding

Removing

Repeating

That all this work is never done.

That all this work can be quite fun

That all…

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