Vervain – Grow Your Own Vampire Repellent

Vervain - Grow Your Own Vampire Repellent

The myth and magic of Vervain ( Verbena officinalis ) has been embedded in human culture for 1000’s of years. Ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans, all had beliefs about the powers of this plant. In the Middle Ages it was used as a key ingredient in a mixture for protection against demons. Of course in modern times, with our massive body of scientific knowledge it is used more often as a Vampire Repellent…. live and learn !


Weekend Reader – Fall Herbal Teas, More Vitamins From Your Vegetables, a Herb Podcast and a Wasp from 1914

Stonecrop, Mount Arrowsmith October 2016

Stonecrop, Mount Arrowsmith October 2016

Happy middle of October, this week everyone seems to be planting garlic,  collecting leaves, and dodging raindrops.

I found this article in the  good old Mother Earth News Four Herbal teas for Autumn .

Always on the lookout for interesting “functional food” information, I found this article at Treehugger – Vegetables that are better cooked than Raw. I really like the tag line for the Treehugger site “decadence through simplicity “.

If you have to do a long drive or are looking for something to listen too while raking the leaves, check this out out A Way to Garden Podcast on Herbs.

Since I work on a small herb farm on Vancouver Island , looking for other small herb farms around the world is a hobby of mine, here is one that is also on an island – Herb Farm on the Island of Tasmania.

For the science and bug loving crowd here is a story about  a wasp species that hasn’t been seen since 1914 – Weird Science Topic – the wasp is back.







Weekend Read – Recipes, Limestone and PH Control, Fall Cuttings on Vancouver Island, and the Weather




October Storm over Vancouver Island

October Storm over Vancouver Island

Here is a review of interesting horticultural experiences and  news from the past week that I hope will enjoy !


I found this great site with Recipes that feature herbs  by the American Herb Society.


Soil Mixes for Plant Growing

For those of us inclined to a more scientific approach here is an extensive article on Peat Moss, Compost , Limestone and PH Control.


Fall Herb Propagation Tips for Vancouver Island

The September 1 – Nov 1 time frame is really good for perennial plant propagation by division and cuttings because:

a) Generally a less busy time of year for plant growing, compared to the “spring rush”.

b) Summer heat has passed , so less sun, heat and misting issues.

c) Plants started this time of year are bigger, better and ready earlier than plants propagated early spring.

d) If for some reason the fall cuttings don’t take, you get a second chance in the spring.

e) Additional bottom heat is always beneficial for cuttings, however this time of year there is a natural tendency for the soil to be warmer than the air.

And Finally the Weather !

We have been having quite a storm over the last 24 hours,  click here for an interesting real time update.