Ah, mulch! The gardener's best friend. My sinuses worst enemy. Raking, my favourite (not). Leaf mold, hay seeds, lichen spores and old mushrooms wafting on the breeze.....there's that Zen trick to raking without raising dust, given a fair wind, but PLEASE wear your dust masks or you'll end up with brown lung, like me. And you really don't want to end up like me.
Not that it's anywhere near winter here, yet, if you had a nice blankie of mulch on your garden thru the end o' summer drought, that little rain last week should bring Second Spring. Now you have flower pollen and bee stings to add to your allergy list, isn't Nature exciting?
But the big bags of dried weeds you have harvested for teas and soups will undoubtedly see you through the flu season with as few miseries as possible. I've got a big cup o' brew sitting on the desk while composing witty wisdoms for this sporadic gardening epistle. But I'm not thinking too clearly, because my head is full of gribblies after spending yesterday evening pulling crabgrass along the borders and laying it down for mulch. Bend and stretch, clean and jerk, squat thrust, and low hurdles......I got my workout, did you?
It sure looks pretty out the big back window, the sunrise over the Veggie Jungle was quite splendid, with Moonflowers and Morning Glories both awake at the same hour. But the morning light also shows me all the places I missed yesterday.......but today, I'm going to try to pretend it's The Weekend and take some thyme off from all those fascinating outdoor chores.
If I don't do it, who will?
If not now, when?
Recipe of the Week: Clear As Air Tea
Legally, I can't say "Drink this, you'll feel better," but I can say "This is what I'm drinking for my clogged head and cough."
Bring 4 cups purified water to boil. Crush a variety of all the mint family herbs and flowers from your garden, enough to make 1/2 cup, put them in a big teapot or jar (I think I have Lemon Balm, Sweet Marjoram, Peppermint, and Lavender in this brew. I could have added Mexican Marigold blossoms which are blooming this week, but they are SO licorice!)
Steep herbs in water 3-4 minutes, pour off a cup or two nice and hot, then refill the teapot with more cold water, let steep another hour, strain and drink as Iced Tea when the chilly morning turns hot later this afternoon. If you want sweet tea, add raw honey while the brew is still warm. I cheated and added a couple of green tea bags, so I wouldn't snooze away the day, but this remedy won't make you sleepy like commercial cold meds. I just require more oxygen than I'm getting this morning.....wheeze. Drink up!