Newsletter # 12: Week of September 2nd

Basket contents: Beans, ground cherries or melon, eggplant, lettuce, cucumbers, zucchini, broccoli, cabbage or cauliflower, tomatoes, cherry tomatoes.

Recipe of the week: Zucchini relish

September!  Egads- does this mean it’s fall?  It sure is starting to feel that way around here!  Last week we brought all of the onions into the greenhouse to cure for storage and this week we’re onto potatoes.  The pumpkins are looking mighty ready as well, but we’re hoping to hold them back a few weeks still.  Jenna is working hard to build us a barrel washer- a big rotating cylinder in which we can wash our root crops- carrots, beets, parsnips, turnips.  They will be ready, too, in the next few weeks.  So you’ve guessed it, harvesting is the name of the game around here.

This week I’d like to share a little about one of our lesser known complimentary products- herbal teas.  I, Heather, am the resident family herbalist, having completed my year-long training with L’Herbotheque, and this is my third year managing the gardDSCN3090en.  Our herb garden is a place of beautiful, bursting diversity, where there are constantly flowers opening, and honey bees happily congregating. We grow over 40 different medicinal plants for fresh use, as well as to transform into herbal teas. A few of the tastiest tonic tea plants end up in the veggie baskets each year, such as lemonbalm and anis-hyssop. Mostly, though, I dry my herbal harvest and combine them by taste and properties to make the  selection of tea blends.

I have learned about medicinal plants over the years from other farmers and herbalists, and have been awed to learn the power of some of the very common plants around us.  I find it fascinating to recognize that we can learn to keep ourselves healthy and to heal ourselves by growing and creating our very own medicine- found right in our gardens, forests, prairies; in the country as well as in the cities.  I believe that the plants most suited to our particular ecosystem are the plants that will be the most appropriate for us, and so all of the plants in my herbal tea mixes come from the farm- some cultivated and others wild.  I am thrilled to be able to share this passion with you, and would love to hear about your own herbal experiences.  Let’s talk about it over tea!  I bring 40g bags of my 5 blends to drop-off each week, and they can be yours for $6 a bag.  You can also find them at Biosphère in Vieux St-Eustache, as well as at the Eco-Boutique in Café Artère in the Parc X neighbourhood of Montreal.   For more information about each tea blend, check out our website: