may flowers in colorado

The Herb Blurb – May 2021

Here comes the gorgeous month of May when it seems the whole world begins anew. I love the longer days, the spring flowers, sudden rainstorms, the first hummingbirds, and baby deer. What will you begin now that we are emerging from the pandemic and new opportunities and adventures beckon? What can you release from this past year as you move forward with new ideas, relationships, adventures, and perspectives?

Farmer’s markets will be starting soon. (hopefully) Seasonal produce for May includes baby greens, spinach, dandelion and chickweed, asparagus, Brussel sprouts, new potatoes, artichokes, snap peas, snow peas, fennel, beets, sweet onions, rhubarb, and strawberries. Let the nutritious, delicious feasting begin!

Upcoming Classes!

Herbalism Certificate Program

I will be teaching in the Herbalism Certificate Program at the Denver Botanic Gardens. It is a 10 session program covering all the essentials for basic herbal skills with classes taught by a variety of instructors. Registration opens on May 3 and spots are limited. Get more information at https://www.botanicgardens.org/education/adult-programs/herbalism-certificate-program.

Herbal Happy Hour – Cocktails and Mocktails from the Garden – ONLINE - Friday, June 18.

Herbal Happy Hour – Cocktails and Mocktails from the Garden – ONLINE - Friday, June 18.
This program will be prerecorded to allow flexibility as to when each recipe can be prepared. The recorded videos will be sent out before noon on Friday, June 18, and will be available for viewing for 2 weeks.

Discover how easy it is to create fresh, artisanal beverages from the garden with minimal effort and delicious results. Learn how to make refreshing aqua frescas, fruity shrubs, beneficial bitters, and creative cocktails with infused liquors. Skip the chemicals, dyes, and corn syrup and bring in the nourishing clean tastes of fresh produce and herbs of the season to create your own unique, flavorful libations. A class kit will be provided for pickup.

Each take-and-make kit includes enough ingredients to make approximately 2 - 4 servings of each recipe. Participants will need to supply their own alcohol, although this is optional. These kits are available for local pickup only. Susan's book, The Herbalists Happy Hour, will be available for the class discount price of $15.00.

This class will cover: Aqua Frescas, Simple Syrups, Infused Alcohol, Shrubs, Bitters
MenuLavender Lemonade Fizz, Spicy Tequila & Lime Cocktail, Seasonal Fruit Shrub, Orange Bitters

**Registration will close on Sunday, June 13, at 11:59 p.m.** 
For more information and registration - https://catalog.botanicgardens.org/Selection.aspx?item=4196&sch=167071

Lavender Lemonade Fizz
Herbalist's Happy Hour

Crested Butte Wildflower Festival – July 9 – 18

It’s back! A week of glorious wildflowers in the mountains. Classes are offered on a variety of topics from hikes, botany, crafts, history, and more. I will be teaching classes on wild food foraging, cooking, herbs, and crafting. Class sizes will be limited due to Covid, so enroll early if there is something that intrigues you. Hope to see you there

Crested Butte Wildflower Festival – July 9 – 18.

https://crestedbuttewildflowerfestival.org

Fun Things To Do & Watch

To Do:

Looks like this summer we will be able to once again go to movies, festivals, concerts, and vacations. Hooray!! Check out https://www.colorado.aaa.com/events and https://www.colorado.com for the latest on fun things to do and vacation ideas.

To Watch:
Seaspiracy on Netflix - a fascinating documentary on the state of our oceans. Then watch My Octopus Friend, also on Netflix, a beautiful film about connection.

Gardening

May is THE gardening month of the year here in Colorado. Unless you are up in the mountains in which case you will have to wait for June.

Remember the most important item for garden success is soil. Get that right and the rest is a breeze. An ideal soil is the texture of a crumbled chocolate cake. Amend your garden space with compost and consider raised beds if your soil is uncooperative.

Have a plan and make a list before you go to the garden center. Incorporate plants that do well in this area. I always veer towards the low water plants which also tend to be low maintenance. There is no point in planting azaleas and beef master tomatoes when there are so many better options.

This may be the year for a vegetable garden if you have never had one. Salad greens, radishes, cherry tomatoes, beans, leafy greens, and herbs all do well here. Enjoy the ease of walking out to the garden for your fresh produce and the thrill of accomplishment when your crop comes in. Just make sure you have enough sun and good soil to make it thrive.

For a treasure trove of information about what does well and when to plant it check out http://www.ext.colostate.edu/. Go to the menu dropdown, hit topics, go to yard and garden and you will find an abundance of information on anything from raising livestock to the best cherry tomatoes for your area.

Start small and go from there. You can always add on later if you have the time and energy. A small, well-kept garden is a source of infinite reward. A large weedy one? Not so much. Don’t overlook container gardens. Easy and great for small spaces

Seasonal Allergies

Herb of the Month – Stinging Nettle – Urtica dioica

The Herbalist's Happy Hour

The Herbalist's Happy Hour

Warm weather is on the horizon and it's time for refreshing beverages, cocktail parties, and al fresco dining. My book includes recipes for fresh, artisanal beverages and finger foods made with ingredients from the garden. I went for low effort and delicious results. It includes recipes for cocktails, infused liquors, non-alcoholic refreshers, bitters, garnishes, savory small bites, and more. From Blueberry Basil Blast to Smoked Salmon Mousse you’ll find plenty of ideas for healthy hydrating and flavorful snacking. Get it here 

"To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow."
Audrey Hepburn

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