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Vegetable Gardens

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Comment by Lyn - Sydney on January 21, 2011 at 4:29pm

Deborah - I sometimes use Thai Basil instead of regular basil to make my pesto sauce, it has a lot stronger taste than the usual basil, but still nice.  I started buying it from the local Asian grocery store as it was about 4 times cheaper than what the supermarkets were charging for Basil.

I have tried so many times to grow both purple and normal basil, but don't have much luck, with the climate here both basil and coriander bolt to seed so quickly. Have just put in another basil plant donated by sister in law, but noticed it has already had a few chomps out of it!

I too have found that many of my herbs that take a bashing in the frosts here in July/Aug, seem to recover quite well after a haircut and Spring seems to push them back up again. I think you will find that Thai Basil is a lot more hardier than regular basil and you should be able to get a couple more seasons out of it.  I agree about the flowers, I allow lots of my herbs to go to flower as I find they look so pretty around the garden.  I particularly like the flowers on my Pineapple Sage - they were a stunning vivid pinky red.

Another plant I grow, but keep confined in a pot is Vietnamese Mint - I love it, just brushing past  - the smell alone, my daughter can't abide it, says it make her feel sick.  It is funny how different herbs affect everyone differently.  I know people who cant abide Coriander,(Cilantro to you) I adore it and would wear it as a perfume if I could!!

Love the rose in the piccie - what is it?

Comment by diana Z9 Houston, Texas on January 21, 2011 at 4:02pm
 japanese bettles will strip a pine tree in such a short time. 
Comment by Robert E Brown--z7b8aNC on January 21, 2011 at 3:59pm
Cathy, I doubt they were brought here for that.  They don't eat bugs, they eat leaves.  They will strip an apple tree or rose bush and other plants completely of their leaves.  They are very difficult to control once they establish themselves.
Comment by diana Z9 Houston, Texas on January 21, 2011 at 3:55pm
Charlie, the pink rose that did not dye in Louisiana is called the "Peggy Martin Rose" named after herself.  There are a few nurseries that have that rose, the Texas Rose Empororium sells it.  That was some story.
Comment by Charlie Patin Z8 TX on January 21, 2011 at 3:33pm

@Diana, No, not going to the tree sale.  Ft. Bend Co. is over 130 miles from me.  I do know about it though. 

@Deborah, Yes I am a Certified Master Gardener and President of our local organization.  If you like gardening and love sharing your knowledge and have a yen to help others please look into becoming a MG.  It's interesting, fun, educational and you'll meet many, many wonderful people.   Go for it. 

Comment by Bob (Z9B Florida) on January 21, 2011 at 2:10pm

Robert E -- here's a link to some interesting reading on JB predators. 

http://www.ehow.com/list_5955700_natural-predators-japanese-beetles...

Comment by Bob (Z9B Florida) on January 21, 2011 at 2:06pm

Most recent plantings of lettuce and spinich seeds starting to come up right on schedule.  We've been growing lettuce in containers but have moved this latest planting into an outside bed.  Radishes and toms are doing well too.  Peppers should be up by Monday or so.  You know, at some level I find that the "growing" is at least as much fun as "eating!" 

 

Kimberly... your stow-away anole story made me chuckle.  :)

Comment by Kimberly White, Lombard, IL,Zn 5 on January 21, 2011 at 12:57pm
Some plant and animal imports were brought in with early settlers that brought with them things that were familiar.  Some plants were staple foods.  Some animals were brought to control other animals or insects.  Some just happen by plain accident.  I went on a trip to Florida.  A few days after my return to Chicago, I saw a little Anole lizard running around my house.  It must have gotten into my luggage somehow.  I never was able to catch it and later found it dead.  With our global economy, as careful as we are, accidentals still occur.  Especially, around port of entry cities.  Asian longhorn beetles in the Chicago area have been devastating, while Monk Parakeets haven't had as much impact.  We are constantly learning how our actions, whether they be intentional or not, impact our world.
Comment by Robert E Brown--z7b8aNC on January 21, 2011 at 11:04am
I definitely agree that you need to be careful with imports.  The southeastern part of the US is having a major problem with Japanese beetles now.  I'm not sure how or where they first got brought into the country but they are spreading rapidly.  They have no real natural predators here so they are becoming a major problem.  There are also problems with plants that have been brought in.  They can and will take over, killing the native plants.  So it's not just disease that they are worried about.
Comment by Bob (Z9B Florida) on January 21, 2011 at 10:09am

Deborah,

That's a really interesting question .. and I think the answer is really environment dependent.  It's not unusual to have to start new herbs each year here in Central Florida as the humidity and heat eventually have a telling effect on them.  It sounds like you've got a very different situation and that's awesome!

Cheers!

 

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