Organic Gardening

Saturday March 2 Larry Scislowicz will be presenting on Organic Gardening at the Samuels Library in Front Royal at 1 pm.

Larry operates the On Simple Grounds Farm and manages the Front Royal’s Farmer’s Market. Larry’s farm embraces the principles of permaculture and sustainable agriculture. His presentation will cover seed starting, composting, soil preparation and care, pest control techniques and irrigation. The address for the Samuels Library is 330 E. Criser Road, Front Royal, Va. 22630

Time to Plant Bulbs

Now is the time for planting many of our flowering bulbs for spring bloom.

Hardy, spring-flowering bulbs are planted in fall. Hardy, fall-flowering bulbs, such as colchicum, are planted in August. Tender, summer-flowering bulbs are planted in the spring after danger of frost. Lilies are best planted in late fall.

It is best to check correct planting depth for each bulb with a successful local grower or other good local source. Bulb catalog and reference book recommendations for planting may be either too shallow or too deep depending on soil condition. As a general rule of thumb, bulbs should be planted 2 1/2 to 3 times the diameter of the bulb in depth. It is important not to plant bulbs too shallow, as this will encourage frost heaving.

For complete information on bulbs, go to Virginia Cooperative Extension Here.

American Pennyroyal

Getting to know Native Plants by Richard Stromberg

American Pennyroyal

Have you smelled a strong mint odor while walking across a field or through the woods?  You probably stepped on or brushed American Pennyroyal (Hedeoma pulegioides).  You usually don’t see this small plant (4-18 inches tall), only smell it.  Its flowers are small, about 1/16th of an inch diameter.

American Pennyroyal
American Pennyroyal

We grow many members of the Mint Family (Lamiaceae) for fragrance and flavoring besides the mints themselves:  basil, lavender, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, sage, savory, thyme.  I think Pennyroyal has the most potent odor.