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The Herb Blurb – September/October 2021

Yes, it still feels like summer but fall is fast approaching. Enjoy harvest festivals, turning leaves in the mountains, farmer’s markets overflowing with garden produce, and cooler temps.
It’s time to start stocking up for winter. Collect the garden harvest, dry herbs for teas, seasoning blends, and kitchen remedies, and prepare the garden for its winter rest.

I will be traveling for most of September and early October, so this newsletter will cover both months.

Upcoming Classes - I have been doing mainly private classes and herb walks this summer. Looking ahead, I will be doing more public classes at the Denver Botanic Gardens in the new building. I’ll keep you posted. We are in the planning stages now.

Fun Things to Do!

SEPTEMBER
In spite of the recent spike in the virus, there is a lot happening this month. Get out and enjoy all the options for outdoor fun.

Boulder Creek Hometown Festival, September 4-6, arts and crafts, live music, food court and beer garden, zucchini race, and more. https://www.bceproductions.com/boulder-creek-hometown-festival

A Taste of Colorado, Labor Day weekend, September 4-6. Food, food, and more food. Cooking demos, arts and crafts marketplace, carnival rides, and 3 stages of free entertainment. Denver’s end of summer blowout. https://www.atasteofcolorado.com/

Cherry Creek Arts Festival, September 4-6, Moved from its July 4th spot. Come out to enjoy great art, good food, live music, and more. https://cherrycreekartsfestival.org

Longs Peak Highlands Festival, September 10-12, Estes Park. Jousting, bagpipes, Celtic music, food, and more. http://www.scotfest.com/

Denver Octoberfest, September 17-19, and 24-26, Games, food, and music on Larimer street. thedenveroktoberfest.com

Mountain Harvest Festival, September 23-26, Paonia. Music, arts and crafts, and farm tours. www.mountainharvestfestival.org/

 

OCTOBER

Cider Days, Lakewood, October 2 and 3, Lakewood Heritage Center. Music, history, tractor pulls,  pie-eating contests, and more. https://www.lakewood.org/Community-Resources/Arts-and-Culture/Arts-and-Culture-Events/Cider-Days-2019

Halloween Happenings, Great fun from cemetery tours, zombie crawls, Victorian horrors at the Molly Brown house, and fright fests. Check out www.denver.org/things-to-do/fall-winter/halloween/ for all the options.

Free Days are back at SCFD
Check https://scfd.org/ for current listings.

Herb of the Month - SAGE

Sage is a savory seasoning for poultry, pork, winter squash, pear and apple dishes, cheeses, stews, and chowders.

Antiviral and astringent, sage has long been used as a healing herb. Sage leaf rubbed on unhealthy gums will help tighten and disinfect. Sage tea is a delicious remedy for sore throats, helpful for menopausal hot flashes, and assists nursing Moms when weaning off breastfeeding. Sage is high in bio-available calcium and trace nutrients and helps the digestive system deal with fatty foods.

Legend has it that where a vigorous sage plant grew, the woman ruled the house. Go sage! It is an easy-to-grow perennial, a must for every herb garden. Put it in a sunny spot and don’t overwater and enjoy this useful, beautiful plant.

Now is the time to harvest your sage. Cut the stems, bind with a rubber band and hang upside down until dry. Store the whole stem and leaves in a glass jar and keep in a cool, dark place and be ready for those winter nasties with a steaming cup of sage tea.

sunflower

October Gardening

Yes, it’s time to bid adieu to the garden as it settles in for the winter rest. The time for procrastination is over. Snow will fall, tomatoes will freeze, annuals will turn black. Get those houseplants in, the herbs and produce harvested, any perennials in your pots transplanted into the garden and your ceramic containers dumped out and stored for winter. Put in some fall bulbs for your spring show and plant some pansies and mums to brighten up the yard.

Mound up the soil from your emptied pots over your tender perennials and wait until spring to cut back your roses and grasses. I usually let all of my perennials stay unpruned and just cut back the messy dead annuals. The extra foliage adds protection and makes for some winter interest. Then it’s time to relax, those garden chores are over for a while.

"Autumn burned brightly, a running flame through the mountains, a torch flung to the trees,."
Faith Baldwin

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