As soon as the good weather returns, spring fever takes hold of the gardeners. Whether you are an expert or a beginner, you are probably already planning what to plant this year. Flowers, herbs or seeds: the choice is almost infinite, and large home centres such as Rona, Reno-Depot or Canadian Tire offer a wide selection. Be inspired by new varieties and have fun!
Lacking time or motivation to grow your seedlings indoors this year? Here’s a tip! Many varieties of vegetables can be planted directly outside when the ground is barely thawed. That’s right! Even if the snow hasn’t melted completely, some vegetables like radishes, spinach and peas like cool climates and are frost-hardy. Then continue with root vegetables such as beets, carrots, turnips and potatoes.
Edible flowers are all the rage in the gardening world! Prepare spectacular dishes and embellish your garden with one of the 250 species of edible flowers. Violets, Indian cress, pansies, lilacs and chive flowers are among the most popular. Cut the flowers at the last minute and garnish your salads, cocktails and desserts. To prolong the pleasure, place the flowers in ice cube trays and store them in the freezer until ready to serve.
Summer wouldn’t be the same without fresh herbs! Flavour your dishes or prepare delicious infusions; herbs offer you a universe of flavours and smells. Mint is a great favourite that can be used in plenty of recipes: in salads and smoothies for a burst of freshness or in infusions to promote digestion. Beware: mint is an invasive herb. To prevent the plant from rooting, put the pot directly in the soil.
For a relaxing herbal tea, verbena and chamomile are two herbs of choice. The chamomile gives pretty little flowers that will help you create a beautiful garden. You make the herbal tea using dried flowers. As for tarragon, it tastes wonderful in mayonnaise or lemonade. You can also use lemongrass to perfume your oriental recipes. Harvest the stems throughout the summer and in the fall, cut them all and freeze them to enjoy over the winter.
With beautiful lazy summer nights on the patio come some inconveniences such as mosquitoes. Did you know that certain plants and herbs can keep them away naturally? Some of the best mosquito-repelling plants include lavender, geranium, lemon balm, lemongrass and basil.
Have a great summer!