Spring is literally in full bloom in Portland. The cherries and other flowering trees that align my street are casting a pink and white glow. It reminds me of running in Central Park behind the Met. Last year I planted ALOT of new things, especially herbaceous plants like mondarda (bee balm), echinacea, and anise hyssop, some herbs, and edibles in the fall like rapa, kale, and broccoli. All are doing great!! Let’s check in.
Well hello Ms. Mugwort! I got this last late summer and planted in the rose strip. It quickly died back. But it’s back! Medicinally mugwort is interesting – in that it’s said it causes funky dreams. It’s a very old herb…and has been used to flavor beer (instead of hops), flavor meat, and protect in magical circles.
And here is my other ‘other’ herbal purchase from last year. I got this Black Cohosh and the Mugwort (from the other image) from Black Heron Herbary on Sauvie Island here in Portland. I planted this Black Cohosh on the wet north side of the house. It’s considered a native woodland plant in some areas, and has faced a decline. Black Cohosh is known as a relief remedy for menopause symptoms like hot flashes.
Bulbs I planted in 2012. Ranunculous “Bride” variety.
Lovely kale flowers! Edible and delicious.
Pear espalier arm #1.
Pear espalier arm #2.
The pear espalier #3. Four different varieties total.
Echinacea! This bed will have more bedfellows this year. Likely some native strawberries as a ground cover, some chamomile that I’ll plant, bee bread, and maybe something else white.
Bee balm coming up. Already smells slightly like orange or bergamot.
Lawn removal alert! Here near the raspberries (courtesy of my friend Brad C). I also laid some hardscape in the form of big heavy stepping stones from Mt Scott Fuel.
Lawn removal alert!! Starting with the parking strip in front of the house where the roses are. I pulled some up and planted a male and female seaberry, though you can see in the middle one rose is coming back. Would be so great to remove this entire grass strip. I did this bit without cardboard, but handcut the sod out. It took alot of work, but at least the ground isn’t too raised.
Cima di rapa blossoms again.
Purple happy broccoli, yum!