grow, marvel, eat, laugh, persevere

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Harvesting Herbs: How I Spent My Sunday

I harvested Sweet Basil and Greek Oregano today. I followed the method described on the Illinois Extension office. Thanks again Marc at Garden Desk for directing me to that site! It has been so helpful! I cut the stalks and tied 5-6 of them together with string. If these things dry like they are suppose to, I don't think I'll ever buy herbs again. Next year I will definitely try the other culinary herbs I cook with frequently.
I'm so glad to finally get some use out of this pants hanger! I put a few bundles of herbs in a bag and tied it with part of the stems exposed, then poked a few holes in the bags. They are now hanging in the basement drying. I know I'll be able to harvest more basil later and since I don't really like Pesto, I think I'll try to find a cute way to package the dried herbs and give some to friends around the holidays. I think this will make an interesting stocking stuffer. Look what else I did! This morning this black iron stand held an empty aquarium. I've had this thing for over 10 years and I still think its really pretty. I also love fish but as I've stated before, I'm a lazy bastard and I hate maintaining it. It has always held fresh water fish but last year I had a fish epidemic and everybody died in a matter of a few days. Since then, it's just been sitting empty in the living room causing me extreme horror every time we have company. Talk about an eye sore! Anyway, I decided it would make a great plant stand and I just happened on a big blue board in my garage left by some previous owner who also left a saw in the basement. That's right - I used a saw! I am either going to re-paint the boards (I have baby blue paint that I used on my guest room) or sand a little of this off to make it look a little more rustic. I also considered painting the boards purple - I'm just dying to paint something purple now that I have seen Carol's purple garden bench. But, in the immediate future, this will house fall lettuce that I plan to plant from seed. I can't wait!I was so inspired by Farmgirl's great it's-so-easy-to-plant-lettuce-from-seed that I've been waiting for the right time to plant some myself. Since I won't get my raised beds built in time, I thought I'd just plant some in containers, hence the need for a longish plant stand. Below is what you get when you shop end of season sales. I do not like these window boxes! They need to be wider and wooden and way cuter than this. Should I take them back? I could use boxes that are 30 inches long and 12 inches wide. These are only 8 inches of boring stone colored plastic. Yuck! I considered trying to make my own but the only wood I have around is on the pallets in the basement. What do you think? Keep the ugly plastic ones or return them and build some wood ones?

I de-rusted 2 of the 4 chairs today. What a messy job that sanding is! I was an orange rusty mess. I really need to decide what color this thing needs to be.

After a long tiring day I was so hungry. This is the one pepper that my potted Sweet Banana Pepper plant has produced. I chopped it up along with onions and tomato from my garden on a big salad for dinner. I guess I've never had one of these that were not pickled. I have to say I was a little disappointed. It tasted like a bell pepper to me.


  1. You had a busy day! Giving herbs as presents is a good idea ... I had to smile at your pant hanger being put to good use.

    I absolutely love your chairs. They are gorgeous. I'd be tempted to paint them a dark periwinkle blue ... with a contrasting colour for the back.

  2. You should paint the ugly plastic containers! They now have spray paint expecially for plastic that should work great.

  3. Kate - I'm still in shock over that table! I love it too! I am one lucky girl. What color would you paint the back? After I finished removing the rust, the bottom part looks kinda cool. It's black with bronze shades in it. I'm tempted to leave it like that and paint the back or mayb just the moon and star thing. Thanks for stopping by!

    julie - I thought of painting the ugly plastic containers but I want to plant lettuce in them. Do you think that would be like eating paint? Thanks for visiting!

  4. congratulations on the dry herbs. I always do oregano, but since i love pesto more than dried basil I make large batches and freeze it for winter.

    I've had good luck drying sage, rosemary, thyme, chives, parsley.... go for it next year.

  5. wayne - thanks for stopping by! i will definately try all of your suggestions, except sage, i don't really like it much. It reminds me of overly saged southern cornbread dressing at thanksgiving dinner. YUCK!

  6. wow, okay so you're like "really" gardening. I admire all the pet projects you've managed to do this summer. Impressive!