EARTH DAY, APRIL 22, 2016
Earth Day means so much to people around the world, and touches how we live in numerous ways.
We all want to preserve our Earth for generations to come. We try our best to take care of and protect the amazing natural resources we have. Earth Day is the perfect time to reflect on our food footprint. Eating locally grown produce and even as local as from our own backyards is a huge step in the right direction! Through home gardening, I can truly appreciate the wonderful Earth we live on. I have loved gardening since I was a child and watched my grandparents and parents grow vegetables, flowers, and fruits. When I was old enough they even let me help pull weeds and till the soil!
While not all of us have space or time to grow a garden, I have an alternative idea for you. Plant an herb garden. Rabbits, and deer, the nemesis of many a home gardener, don’t like many of the pungent herbs. You can grow herbs in pots or in the ground. Some of the herbs flower annually and attract butterflies and hummingbirds.
Sitting with a cup of coffee in the morning or a glass of wine in the evening and viewing my herb garden has become a very relaxing pastime for me and I hope will be for you as well!
Every month we will talk about a different herb and salute our planet Earth and celebrate the bounty of wonderful herbs!
APRIL’S HERB IS SAGE – a picture of Sage flowering in my sunroom this winter is below!
My first experience of attracting a hummingbird to my yard was a blooming sage plant. Sage plants have beautiful purple flowers that the hummingbirds absolutely love! The first time I saw the hummingbird I was so shocked I thought it was an extra large bumblebee! Since then, I have planted honeysuckle vines to keep things blooming all summer long, but the hummingbirds always stop to visit the sage in bloom as well.
Uses of the leaves from the sage plant – Sage is a wonderful herb that can flavor so many savory dishes. I recommend sage in stuffings of all kinds, chicken, pork and some beef dishes. For example, it is one of the unusual ingredients in my meatloaf recipe. Another way I use sage, that is out of the ordinary, is in my chicken salad recipe.
Remember to use 1 T of fresh herbs vs. 1 tsp of dried herbs in your recipes. Cut the fresh sage leaves, rinse and dry on paper toweling before chopping. My favorite way to chop herbs quickly is in my mini food processor. If you are using a knife make sure it has been sharpened. Have you ever fried sage leaves? They can be used to garnish soups, salads, etc.
Herb plants are starting to show up at garden centers here in Michigan. I have a few empty spots in my herb garden where I might be able to squeeze in another sage plant, or two!
Happy Earth Day!
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