Thanks for visiting my blog. Hope you find some helpful hints for organizing your time and space. My passions are to help you make home a refuge instead of a crisis center, and to help you function in peace rather than chaos - at home or at work. I have switched my main blog to 1-2-3 ... Get Organized on WordPress, so please visit me there.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Managing Invasive Herbs

Better Homes and Gardens (http://www.bhg.com) offers some tips for preventing your mint or other invasive herbs (tansy, catnip, comfrey, horseradish, lemon balm, hops, artemisia) from taking over your garden. A couple of ideas:

- Plant them in 12-inch pots and place the pots in the ground so that they are not seen. The pots keep the roots from running, which is how they normally spread.

- Plant them in large planters or half-barrels.

You may want to plant a different variety in each pot or planter.

The only invasive herb I have experience with is mint - my mint patch started out with just two or three plants three years ago, and now it has grown to a three foot by 2 foot rectangle. It is bordered by our house and a sidewalk on two sides, so its growth potential is limited. But the area where it is growing is rather unused, so we really don't mind it spreading. I love being able to walk out my side door and pick mint leaves for our herbal mint iced tea each day.

I know I shared this recipe before, but it's worth repeating. I collect a generous handful of both spearmint and peppermint. After rinsing off the leaves, I pour boiling water over them in a mug. I let it steep - the longer the better - and add about 3/8 to 1/2 cup of sugar for 1/2 gallon. It's so refreshing in hot weather! We take it to drink when we play tennis - far more refreshing than water.

Mint's abundance allows you to share your leaves or your plants with your friends and family. One of my next door neighbors now has a planter full of mint that she grew from some sprigs from our garden.

Did you know that mint is soothing and calming? And in olden days, a girl would chew a mint leaf before her beau came to call, to freshen her breath. And, of course, mint can be used in a variety of recipes.

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