Archive | May, 2011

Herbs… a feast for the eyes and tummy.

24 May

I realize some of you might be daunted by the prospect of creating a garden oasis this summer. So perhaps start a small  herb garden so you get 2X the benefit from your effort; aesthetic improvement that you can also savour!

Here are some simple tips on getting your herb garden started.

1. Location, location, location: Most herbs prefer full sun (5 hours or more per day) so try to find a sunny and sheltered area on your balcony, deck or backyard.  Consider this… many herbs offer great aesthetic value, consider planting them amongst your existing annuals and perennials for their visual appeal.  They need not be relegated to one blocked off corner of  your garden.

2. Inventive ‘Pots’: Although I normally avoid using ‘found objects’ in my gardens, I find that herb gardens are the perfect place to experiment with more playful containers. I found this rustic 5 compartment tray at the Evergreen Garden Market at the Brickworks for $30. Can you guess what it is? It is an industrial bread loaf tray from the Weston factory in Leslieville! It’s perfect for herbs as it has 5  distinct compartments  to house your favourites.

Found objects can make interesting plant containers.

3.  Select your Herbs:  When selecting herbs, consider some of  your favourite meals and the dry spices you normally use in your cooking.  By planting herbs you already use, it will ensure you get the most use out of your herb garden.  Here are some of my favourites:

For the  BBQ:  thyme & rosemary ( I opt for a separate potted shrub as I use this one almost daily!)

Cocktail Hour: spearmint for mojitos! Be careful though… keep this one in a container on its own as it grows like crazy which will give you lots of excuses to host mojito parties!

Italian dishes: oregano, basil and parsley

Asian dishes: thai basil and cilantro

4. Plant and enjoy!

"Urban Herbs"

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Fresh and bright! The perfect summer urn for shade.

18 May

Ok you city dwellers, do you have a deeply shaded urban garden in need of a face lift?!
Consider a modern and fresh palette of electric lime, rich purple and flirty fuchsia. Here is a look at one of my favorite combos.

Fix that dull & drab balcony!

16 May

Looking for a simple to install product that will dramatically change the look of your balcony?  Consider EON deck tiles.  They are 100% recyclable, zero-maintenance and absolutely stunning.

Watch this short video to see how they look on my balcony and to learn more.

Find them at Canadian Tire or on Costco.ca.