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  • Liz

Plants Gone Wild

...and it’s no doubt thanks to all that caterpillar poop from last year that has supersized every wild and perennial plant on the property. This flowerbed did not exist last year. And Yes, that’s a Giant Hosta. Last year it was 1/2 this size so this is not normal.

I’m not complaining despite spending a good portion of any spare time I might have trimming and yanking out excess plant growth. At least no gypsy moth caterpillars this year!

Another example is this patch that we allowed to grow wild last summer. These black raspberry canes popped out of nowhere, and as you could imagine, the berries are delicious…


Garden Pests

It’s always a good idea to inspect your plants for any unusual activity. That’s a daily ritual here and a good thing too. 2 weeks ago I walked into the main garden to find ALL my Dill plants chewed down to the stalk. Each plant had at least one tomato hornworm caterpillar attached to it just munching away (again, the caterpillar!). I didn’t even have a chance to take a picture since I only had a garden tool on hand. They immediately became garden compost. Sorry, not sorry. They would destroy my tomato plants in no time if left undetected. Needless to say, I’m being extra vigilant.

On a good note, we have a few helpers in dealing with the potato beetles this year. This magnificent looking bug here is actually feasting on a beetle, making them a non issue this year, which is a first for us.

And then there’s these gorgeous strawberries. Our patch was attacked by crows and/or squirrels, chipmunks or whatever; completely devouring our berries. So to make me feel better, we visited a local strawberry farm because there really is nothing quite like in-season fresh strawberries and I refuse to let critters win.


Medicinal Plants

When it comes to medicinal plants, I’m fascinated how the most amazing ones are available all season long. The common dandelion, a nuisance to most, has enormous benefits. Echinacea, also known as the Coneflower is definitely good to have on hand in this day and age with its immune boosting properties. Calendula, which is an annual, thrives once established in late spring and will seed itself and grow wild the following year. This plant is also packed with healing therapeutics, and will be there for you until first frost. And then there’s my favourite, purchased 12 years ago from a legit nursery; the Comfrey Plant which is a perennial and available from early March or as soon as the ground defrosts and will keep growing all season long no matter how much or how often you harvest. This Plant is Potent. In fact, it’s pretty controversial too and this article here pretty much explains all you need to know. Either way, here’s a true story. 3 weeks ago, I’m not sure what I did to my left shoulder but the pain was quite something. Always having my homemade comfrey ointment on hand, I decided to slather a slew all over my upper arm. Well, I was gobsmacked. It was instant relief. This stuff has literally been my saving grace from pain. And the bonus thing is, my shoulder is actually healing. Anyhow, I now know why I get the high praises from family and friends who have tried it. I thought they were being nice but yes, it's Absolute Gold.

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