Wintering Herbs Indoors

OK, I admit it. I scurried as fast as I could, and in a rush brought ALL my herbs and tender plants in right before our freakish Halloween weekend snow storm!  Therefor, when this crossed my email this morning I was thrilled! Thank you so much to The Herb Companion, now I know better what I should have bothered with and what I could have ditched. My full windows will be happy to have some “disappear” and I will have an easier winter maintenance routine. You can read the full article on-line, it is called “Wintering Herbs Indoors: Save your favorite herbs by bringing them indoors for winter care, and enjoy fresh flavor throughout the season.” By Betsy Strauch.  Click

Ron at  a window
These all got a bit of "frost bite" - ugh. This is one of a few windows now populated with herbs. We will see if I can resuscitate them!

I have taken some highlights out that I found very useful. The article begins “Autumn. The harvest of herbs is winding down, and the frenzy of trying to stay ahead of the weeds has abated. It’s easy at this time of year to kick back, relax and forget about gardening until the new seed and nursery catalogs start arriving in January. Herb gardeners who live where winters are frost-free can get away with this, and so can those in more rugged climates who only grow annuals, such as dill, or tough perennials, such as garden sage. However that leaves a lot of gardeners unaccounted for, including those who grow rosemary, tender lavenders or other plants that will die at temperatures below 15 degrees, as well as those who have a yen for fresh herbs all winter. Those people (and I’m one of them) need to make some decisions now.

…forget about the annuals, such as summer savory, chervil, cilantro, borage and dill. Their lives are about over; if you want them indoors in winter, you can start new plants from seed… Don’t bother bringing in tough perennial culinary herbs whose dried leaves have good flavor — I’m thinking of sage, oregano and thyme — unless you think you can’t get along without the fresh leaves…Don’t bring in huge tender plants if you don’t have room for them, no matter how badly you need them for next year’s herb garden…Lastly, turn your back on diseased or pest-ridden plants…

Think cuttings…this is well into the article and worth reading if you are thinking about doing this. The section is called “DISASSEMBLING AN HERB.”

To read how she brings her plants in, well, you will have to go to the article! It is on page 2…Caring For The Plants Indoors– page 3, but I will tease you with… “As light levels diminished with the approach of winter, the herbs seemed to enter a holding pattern. None appeared to be growing, and only the rosemary offered many leaves for harvesting. I watered only when the soil became dry or nearly so. Sometimes I was a little late, and the pineapple sage wilted on several occasions, but they recovered well after being watered. I applied no fertilizer.”
(Note: This article originally appeared in the October/November 1993 issue of The Herb Companion.) By the way, this is a lovely magazine if you like Herbs. I throughly enjoy my copy each time it comes in the mail. 

Read more:

See you all on Friday for Fun Food Friday!

Happy Halloween in all it's glory?

Halloween brings out Birdellis uber theatrical side. Being a fashion model and designer she often feels like an actresses anyways, so this is almost like a regular runway day for her. The difference now is, she gets to choose her outfit. She was thrilled to be invited to THE “HOT” designer party’s, she went (it was Saturday night)  to Heidi Klum’s party… Heidi’s costume, in her own words, “It’s kind of like a dead body with the first layer of skin ripped off. It’s basically like me naked.” Birdelli went as a full-fledged Diva.

Read more about Heidi’s costume:

Birdelli ready for Halloween
Birdelli ready for Halloween

Fun Food Friday – this time Cape Breton Food.

Julia with scones
Julia enjoying some bakery traditional Cape Breton Scones.

For todays post I went online and found this these lovely words and recipes. All info., words and recipes are from:
“The story of Cape Breton wouldn’t be complete without a glimpse at the old recipes because of their historical link.  I can still smell the aroma of my grandmother’s bannock as it was taken out of the old coal stove oven and hear her pronounce it with that lovely Gaelic lilt.”


2 c flour
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 c raisins or currants
1/2 c sour cream
1/4 c oil
1 egg (slightly beaten)
3 tbsp milk 

Sift together dry ingredients and stir in the raisins. Blend the remaining
ingredients and stir in the flour mixture until the dough is all together.
Toss on a lightly floured surface until no longer sticky. Knead a few
times. Divide the dough in half then pat each ball of dough into a 6 “
circle with the top slightly rounded. Brush the tops with milk and sprinkle
with sugar. Cut each circle into 6 wedges. Place 2 inches apart on a
cookie sheet. Bake at 425F for 10 to 12 minutes or till golden brown . Serve hot
with butter and jam or flavoured butter or honey.


Scottish bannock is a simple type of scone that was cooked in the early days over open fires.  Settlers from Scotland made a frugal bannock with lots of flour, little sugar and drippings or lard.
1 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c all purpose flour
1/2 c rolled oats
2 tbsp sugar (granulated)
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter (melted)
1/3 c raisins (optional)
3/4 c water

Stir together flours, oats, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add melted 
butter, raisins (if using) and water, adding more water if needed to make 
a sticky dough. With floured hands, pat into greased pie plate. Bake in a 400 F
oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until browned and tester comes out clean.  Cut
into wedges. “ … again….Thanks to the website for all this information!

Tha thu ann = There you are  (Gealic Words for greeting children, and saying goodbye)
And…Mar sin leat  (Goodbye in Gaelic.)

Until Monday -Have a great weekend.

On the top of Cape Breton…

…fortunately not covered with snow, although there was snow in the highlands early in the week, that raised the river the next warm day. This was relevant to us for the rest of the human gang was Salmon fishing and every little detail seems to matter! Tilly and Milly continue to be our spokespersons for Nova Scotia and Cape Breton, but some other the others did join for a some fun and vacation time too.

They want to remind you about our new series and contest – Featured artist interviews and postings 1x per week, hopefully thru the winter. We are planning to kick off this exciting new path with a series of Featured Cape Breton Artist. As we told you on Monday – a new member of our gang, an artist themselves, will be conducting most of the interviews.  After Cape Breton we will feature various artist we know and or have met. If you know some one who creates amazing work for whatever reason PLEASE let us know. We would love to meet/make new artist friends. We are searching for a great name (clever and descriptive) for the art series. All ideas will be considered: email: your ideas, the top 3 will end up as a contest with you, the viewer, able to vote and so help pick the winning name.

Izabellas in her Art Hat
We need a name!

In the meantime here are some more photos of Milly, Tilly and Moe enjoying the magnificence of Cape Breton. Moe, as Minister of Clean Water thought it was his obligation and privilege to be able to go up to Cape Breton and check out those waters!