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To-Dos in the August Garden

August brings hot and sticky weather to Hampton Roads. With it, too, comes the full enjoyment and bounty of the edibles and flowers you've tended during the spring and early summer. The most important thing to do in your garden right now is... enjoy all the beauty you've accomplished!

Sit back, relax and enjoy that gorgeous view. Here's a few easy tricks to keep your garden in tip-top shape through the rest of the summer:

Pick Faded Blooms
Keep your annuals blooming by consistently removing faded blooms. If allowed to remain, blooming will likely decrease, as the strength goes into making seed. Also, pick flowers for bouquets in your home. This will not only help keep the garden neat, but will increase flower productivity. Gather blooms in the evening and plunge in water overnight before using.

Mulch
A lot of gardens this time of year need a fresh application of mulch. Check that your mulch hasn't decomposed and add more as needed. Mulch conserves moisture. So, to properly conserve moisture and protect your plants, it is important to top off beds with bark, wood chips or pine needles at a depth between 3 to 4 inches.

Pick Herbs
Pick herbs for fresh use and for drying. Remember, harvesting will keep them growing longer!

Water
Watering chores will eat up your garden time this month. Remember the basics:
• we recommend watering plants in the early morning
• water the soil, not the leaves in order to prevent spreading disease or fungus
• water deeply and occasionally, rather than shallow and often
• remember to water your containers, as they tend to dry out before plants in the ground

From our Table to Yours

Try some of our favorite holiday recipes at your table this holiday season. These classics combine fresh herbs to create dishes that will dazzle your guests. Using the holiday favorite rosemary, thyme and sage – you will have fresh herbs for all your holiday cooking. Once the holidays are over, place this herb bowl in a kitchen window sill. This also makes a great hostess gift to bring along to your Thanksgiving gathering. Bon Appétit!

HERB STUFFING

Ingredients

  • 12 cups slightly dry bread
  • 1/3 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground sage
  • 1 tsp. dried thyme, crushed
  • 1 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1 cup of chicken broth
  • 6 tablespoons of butter, melted

Combine bread, onion, salt, sage, thyme, and rosemary. Add broth and butter; toss lightly to mix. Use to stuff a 12-pound turkey or bake covered, in a 2-quart casserole at 325º until heated through, about one hour.

HERB BUTTER
Spread this on toast or eggs at breakfast. Toss it with pasta at lunch. Melt it on fish or chicken at dinner. And, of course use on fresh bread for your holiday feast.

Ingredients

  • Dash of salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp sage
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1 stick unsalted of butter

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Mix well with a spoon until combined and all ingredients are incorporated. Place butter mixture into plastic wrap and roll to form a log shape. Wrap tightly and store in refrigerator.

Filed Under: 

Culinary Delight

BOXWOOD BASIL

Fulfill your culinary delights with classical design. Boxwood Basil resembles a miniature boxwood plant with its tight structure and upright shape. And, best of all it is edible. The 12- to 16-inch-tall plant has small, aromatic leaves and, like all basil, grows best in full sun on fertile, well drained soil. It also tolerates heat well and can be shaped into a topiary form.

This unique plant is excellent in containers with its formal appearance and structure. Or, let it form tight mounds to use as a highly ornamental edging plant for a deck or patio. Bred in France, this basil with small leaves was originally used for pesto. Try using the leaves in salads, pesto and pasta dishes. Or, get creative and spice up veal, lamb, fish and poultry, as well as adding zest to rice, cheese and most vegetables. To harvest, we suggest using the whole stem, as opposed to just removing a few leaves here and there. This way you can preserve the classical shape of the boxwood basil.

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