Earth Week and our theme of “Growing” continues

I was thinking what would be good Earth Week postings – and it came to me that it ought to be about being good to oneself and to the earth. As I thought I was somewhat astonished how much those two overlapped.  Eat Organic (when possible) and that is certainly kinder to the earth. Grown without pesticides– better for earth and all it’s inhabitants. Spring Clean chemical free – much better for the cleaner her/himself – and again, easier on the mother earth. You get the idea and point I am sure….  Those are kind of the middle things, the big things are more like Oil and Gas, the little things are more like turn off the lights when you are done. It ALL adds up to matter.  So why not just be good to both. Do what you can this week, and every week, to be kind to yourself and you may indeed be taking care of the Earth as well.

Well, in the thoughts of being good to myself … I could not resist: sunny days and  warmer temps means spring flowers and gardens to me.  As many gardeners will attest to – I just had to have some PANSIES so I could start looking at flowers! I planted them up in containers, although I must admit not in that cool idea of a wine crate from last week.  I reused planter boxes that I have, and will have for decades, for they are plastic. I would not buy them again, but since I have them – it is more wasteful not to use them, verses needlessly purchasing new ones and using more resources of any type. Funny thing – when I was all done – there was a little elf like/Jolie like Beautie standing on the Pots edge!  (Image  below)  I guess that means Jolie is our spokeswoman of the week.  In case you don’t remember- Jolie  lives in the meadow, and  is passionate about exploring and promoting herbals and their uses for medicinal means and for beauty. She runs a shop in Meadowville to serve both purposes. (Columbine (Aquilegia) http://botanicalbeautiesbeasties.com/individual-stories/

Don’t forget- the SEED CONTEST is still going! Guess the type, date it sprouts out of the peat pot, and day it is ready to go into the grown and you could win FREE GREETING CARDS from the Botanical Beauties and Beasties.  http://botanicalbeautiesbeasties.com/product-samples/   (BTW YES – The seeds were planted this weekend!) 

Pansies and Elf
Pansies and a little magic

 

As promised, a great idea for Container Gardening for the Home Cook.

Start your seed/Herb Garden NOW – tips and tricks.

“Each spring, I fill an old wooden wine crate with a cluster of my favorite organic herbs. (Most high-end wine shops will give the cedar boxes away as they typically get tossed once the bottles are unpacked. Drilling a few holes on the bottom for proper drainage is easy, but keep in mind that the wood will only hold up for a few seasons.) I pinch off sprigs of thyme and rosemary for roasted veggies and use spearmint for iced tea. Purple sage adds some lovely color to the overall planting and gives me an excuse to brown butter with my eggs. Bottom line, I’m convinced that having a nice selection of fresh herbs at my finger tips has made me a little more adventurous in the kitchen. Each spring, I fill an old wooden wine crate with a cluster of my favorite organic herbs. (Most high-end wine shops will give the cedar boxes away as they typically get tossed once the bottles are unpacked. Drilling a few holes on the bottom for proper drainage is easy, but keep in mind that the wood will only hold up for a few seasons.) I pinch off sprigs of thyme and rosemary for roasted veggies and use spearmint for iced tea. Purple sage adds some lovely color to the overall planting and gives me an excuse to brown butter with my eggs. Bottom line, I’m convinced that having a nice selection of fresh herbs at my finger tips has made me a little more adventurous in the kitchen.”  Rest of Article, and find other great tips on Practically Green blog. These words from  Estelle Hayes. She lives in Silicon Valley where she blogs at www.underapinkmoon.com. She’s also published regularly on Huffington Post. Estelle’s Herb box below.

Here’s a link for ordering Organic seeds  http://eartheasy.com/blog/2011/01/vegetable-garden-seed-ordering-tips/ ” When the nights are long, and the days dark and cold, gardeners seek inspiration in their online and mail order seed catalogs. Looking at the colorful pictures of vegetables and flowers stimulates optimistic ideas for the spring garden. This is a fine time of year to connect with fellow gardeners to share seed recommendations. These friends may want to order seeds together, thereby saving on shipping and handling fees and perhaps splitting large packets of seed ” Originally published on Eartheasy.com

Estelle's herbs in a recycled box
Estelle's herbs in a recycled box

Spring into your Garden – Get Growing!

♥ Go Green & Get Growing ♥
We are announcing and sprouting off our Start your own Herb Garden Campaign with a CONTEST! Everyone can do this – either virtually or in “real-time.”  Tomorrow I (and Milly) will give you a great idea on how to get going with a physical Herb Garden indoors – no big space requirements here!  Kitchen cooks take note,  a great way to start organic is with your own herbs easy peasy!

For the contest… how much more exciting can it get than to watch the seed grow (ha ha ha) – but wait, there really is more….

WATCH the herb grown in its pot as a sign of springtime.
Milly is the official watcher for us.  First important event is for the seed to pop out of the soil. Next important time and event is when it is big enough and warm enough to go into the ground.  That will call for  a celebration, a party with home-grown organics! Now, here is the party part  for you the viewer. Watch for Blog postings about Milly and her Herb growing/watching/waiting …For every 5th viewer  comment on one of those new post, or the 5th DM from Twitter (@BotanicalB_B) with #MillyHerb,  you will get a package of your own Herb Seeds from the Botanical Beauties and Beasties. For the viewer who guesses WHAT KIND of Herb it is, and when it will be ready to go into the great outdoors – 2 free greeting cards from the Botanical Beauty and Beasties Collection.  Contest starts today and ends – well, now that would be too big a clue!  Stay tuned!

Botanical Beauties – Meet The Blossoms honoring Japan

In honor of Japan. Meet The Blossoms (Sakura and Tanka) – the newest creatures to join the Botanical Beauty and Beasties. Their core is from Cherry Blossoms, but they are created from blossoms of all kinds.

Given the state of disrepair and tragedy in Japan The Botanicals believed it would be nice to have a breath of beauty. Hence, this weeks theme of Beauty and why The Blossoms came to stay. Sakura and Tanka are all about beauty, strength, and unity with, and for, one another. They hope that the possibility of closing your eyes and resting is possible, even when mass chaos surrounds you, and that hopefully there is a bit of beauty in your minds eye at that time of respite.

cherry blossom is the flower of the cherry trees known as sakura (桜 or 櫻; さくら). Cherry blossoms are indigenous to many East Asian states including Japan, Korea, and China. Japan has a wide variety of cherry blossoms (sakura.) Cherry blossoms are celebrated for their beauty.

Why the name Tanka and what does it mean?  Tanka (短歌)  is a short poem and part of a larger Group called Waka, which literally means Japanese poem. The term waka originally encompassed a number of differing forms – Tanka being one of the five. Of the five only Tanka survived and so the term aka eventually came to refer only to tanka.

Beauty in Gardens:Boston Common and Boston Public Garden

This week is all about Beauty.

Yum will be the spokeswoman of the week. She feels with all that has gone in the world in the past few weeks we all need a break and breath of fresh air- hence the theme of Beauty this week!

Yums Story/Job: Yum is a magic fairy. She flies over the land and sea and keeps all in love and peace. She has extraordinary sight, so she sees all, knows all, and helps all.
 (Mixed floral)

The focus of today will be natural beauty – enhanced by humans for our joy of beauty – served up by Public Gardens! Since Yums home turf before she moved to Botaniumus was New England – and the Boston area in particular she want to chat about Boston famous Commons and gardens.

Boston Common was America’s first park, the Boston Public Garden its first public botanical garden.  The commons have seen the likes of George Washington & John Adams in 1768. In WWI victory gardens sprouted up in an WWII  The Commons gave it’s all in giving up most of its iron fencing for scrape metal. It was in the Commons that Charles Lindbergh promoted commercial aviation!

Peaking out
Yum and Charles Lindbergh (Photo from top-10-list.org)

In the 19th Century Bostonians added trees, fountains and statuary. The Common became the park-like greenspace we know today. The park includes ballfields, a totlot and the Frog Pond, which provides skating in winter and a spray pool for children in the summer…. The Public Garden was created in 1837, Boston Common in 1634. What a difference two centuries made. From its inception, the Public Garden was decorative and flowery, the Common pastoral and practical. The Common’s walkways were for crosstown travel, the Public Garden’s paths for meandering. The Common was America’s first park, the Public Garden its first public botanical garden.

This style of park, featuring the gardener’s art, was ushered in by Victorians who had new techniques readily available to collect, hybridize and propagate plants. They had access to showy annuals. Greenhouse-grown plants could assure that displays would be seen at their peak. With such abilities, they bedded-out the Garden in intricate floral patterns of blazing color and planted exotic imported trees. These features are clear in the design by George Meacham, who won the public design competition for the Garden. The prize was $100. … We (Boston Gov) maintain the Victorian traditions for the most part, and we feature the Garden as one of Boston’s great attractions…The plants used in bedding-out the Public Garden are grown in the Boston Parks and Recreation Department’s greenhouses. Over 80 species of plants are cultivated there for future plantings in the Garden –

All information is from http://www.cityofboston.gov/Parks/emerald/public_garden.asp

It is National Wildlife Week!

“Held annually since 1938, National Wildlife Week is NWF’s longest-running education program. National Wildlife Federation (NWF) is featuring 9 species of wildlife.” http://www.nwf.org/en/Wildlife/Activities/National-Wildlife-Week.aspx

Hold on and grip your chair—Botanical Beauties and Beasties has exciting news!  In honor of National Wildlife Week, The Key West Girls are coming to town! They will be arriving on Whimsy Wednesday so be sure to check in and meet them. Here’s a sneak peek. Ahhhyeah… Aww… So Pretty!  Thanks to NWF for declaring it National Wildlife Week. Yahoo!

It’s gonna be a fun week. Spring is trying to pop out, new Beauties (or maybe Beasties) come to visit- maybe stay, as always some eco knowledge and a few fun facts. The creatures are bursting with excitement.

Tweet the news – the Key West girls are on their way! @twitter.com/BotanicalB_B