Penny Woodward spoke at Ashburton Library last Monday night. Here are some of the highlights:
Penny loves sage. It is the first herb that she plants, along with parsley, in any new garden. If you have a cold coming on make a cup of tea with a few sage leaves, some lemon juice and a bit of honey. You’ll be feeling better in no time.
Keep a few herbs in pots just outside your back door. That way you don’t need to hunt around down the back of your garden in the dark when you want a last minute addition to you dinner.
Don’t buy herbal teas at the supermarket! Plant some peppermint, sage, camomile, lemon verbena in your garden and make your own! It tastes better and it’s better for you and the environment.
It was always thought that the wormwood in the French liquor, Absinthe was the ingredient that caused people to have hallucinations and go mad. But recent research that Penny has come across states that it was, in fact, the alcohol.
Penny urges us not to ingest comfrey. In Australia, it is prohibited by legislation. It can make some people very ill and interfere with liver function. However, she says it’s great for making comfrey tea for your vegetables and adding to your compost.
Take a peek in your friends’ gardens next time. How is their parsley growing? If it is growing well and healthy it means the woman is dominant in that household!
Use your bay leaves fresh not dried – they are full of flavour and you’ll never go back to using dried ones. The best way to control a bay tree from becoming a giant in the garden is to prune it! Penny suggests pruning it often and pruning it hard.
Penny likes to plants herbs and vegetables together instead of having a separate herb patch. They look beautiful together and if you plant them right they can compliment each other; strong herbs keeping pests and diseases away.
If you missed Penny at the talk check out her books on our library catalogue and get gardening today!
Penny's books include:
Asian herbs and vegetables : how to identify, grow and use them in Australia.
An Australian herbal : a practical guide to growing and using herbs in temperate Australia and New Zealand.
Community gardens : a celebration of the people, recipes and plants.
Grow your own herbal remedies.
Herbs for Australian gardens : a practical guide to growing and using organic herbs.