Problem-Solving – The Flip Side of Moths


The flip side of moths is the damage many can cause if they get into your cupboards or drawers. I once found  a cherished wool sweater ruined by moths. A few years later my pantry became infested with moths, and I ended up throwing all dry goods and pasta away.

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Three herbs I grow in my garden are good moth repellents. Bundled with a rubber band, rosemary, lavender and sage,  hung inside a cupboard or laid in a drawer, will work as a moth repellent.

Plant Tips – Bountiful Herb Harvest


Autumn has arrived, winter approaches, I have been purchasing potted herbs to grow on my windowsill through the colder months. I will still take cuttings for rooting from my outdoor herbs, but they will not reach harvest size until Spring of 2015. In the meantime, when I need fresh herbs through the winter, I will “pinch” them from my lovely windowsill garden. Another plus in growing herbs indoors is the scent they “whisper” into the air when you run your hands over them…heavenly!

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Photo collage courtesy of

Our area of the country experienced a very cool summer, but my herbs didn’t seem to mind and have thrived. I don’t want to waste the bounty of my gardens so over the next few days I will be harvesting everything I have room to store. I will hang aromatic herbs such as lavender, catnip, and a portion of my mints, in dark closets to dry. Those I use in cooking I will freeze in ice cube trays.

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Step 1

Soak herbs in a bowl of water for a few minutes. Remove the herbs from the water, check for debris, refill and repeat process at least three times.  There is no need for scrubbing or agitation, the water floats the dirt away leaving the essential oils intact. (Organic potted herbs grown inside do not need to be washed.)


Step 2

There is no need to dry sprigs when they are finished soaking. Break leaves away from the stem, place inside empty ice cube trays, add water and freeze.


Step 3

Remove frozen cubes from tray.


Step 4

Place inside a labeled zip-lock freezer bag and store in the freezer. Your “fresh” herbs are now available anytime you are ready to cook a good meal.  The cubes are terrific for making soups and stocks. I also freeze onion, scallions, peppers and other produce for quick stocks.

Posies – Garden Bouquet


I’ve added a new widget to my blog sidebar – “Garden Bouquet.” I thought it would be fun to display an ever-changing bouquet of what is blooming at any given time. Right now, daisies are having their “hey-day” in my flower beds. This bouquet features Echinacea, a Gerbera, and a few Black-eyed Susans. I’ve also added a stem of Four O’Clock, Violet leaves, Vinca vines, and some sprigs of Lavender and Verbena bonariensis.

By the way, after I succumbed to the big writing “no-no” of using a cliche , I wondered where the phrase “hey-day” originated. According to English Language and Usage “hey-day” has its origins here:

Hey·day [hey-dey] noun
1. The stage or period of greatest vigor, strength, success, etc.; prime: the heyday of the vaudeville stars.
2. Archaic . high spirits.

Plants – Herb Whisperer

And God said, “Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed…” Genesis 1:29 (KJV)

Years ago, my mother surprised me with this gift, a rack of bottles for floral arrangements, or as in my case, a place to root plant cuttings. From the day I received this gift, until now, my bottles have not been without sprigs of plants. Placed in a bright window, without strong direct sunlight, the cuttings thrive. My home is filled with plants I have rooted in these bottles.


A week or two ago, I cut a piece of lavender from the garden with hopes of enjoying it through the winter. Lavender is a plant I find hard to start from seed or cutting, but it is not impossible. Even if this sprig doesn’t root for me, I will still enjoy its soft scent through the cold months. I consider myself a herb whisperer of sort. I can imagine you shaking your head, “A what?” you ask. Yes, a herb whisperer. I coax a whiff of beautiful fragrance from my herbs by gently running my hand over the leaves. I don’t need to press. I don’t need to rub. A soft brushing of my fingertips against the foliage releases the oils, and the scent reaches my nose, instantly elevating my mood and energy level.


Whether it is the calming effect of my lavender, or the invigorating swoosh of peppermint, or the contentment found in the fragrance of rosemary, not many days go by without me calling up the herb whisperer within my character.


In winter two of these herbs are still easy to find, peppermint and rosemary are often sold in local supermarkets in the produce section. Lavender might be a bit more difficult to locate in the winter, but if you have a dormant plant in your garden or in a friends, cut a sprig and bring it inside, it will reward you with weeks and weeks of subtle fragrance.

Aromatherapy effects:

Lavender – calming, mood enhancing, cures insomnia and headaches. Read more here: Benefits of Lavender

Peppermint – anti-inflammatory, kills viral infections, clears lung congestion. Read more here: Benefits of Peppermint

Rosemary – aids in digestion, eases stomach cramps, relieves headaches. Read more here: Benefits of Rosemary

More on the care and culture of these three herb plants can be found in the links below: