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~Gardening in the North~

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~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Thu Jun 06, 2013 3:47 pm

I would like to start a garden thread for my own notes and hopefully some tips and advice from the community here. I love gardening but being in the city all of my life, mostly container gardens and indoor, so an outdoor garden is new for me. Growing in the North is new to me also.

I am hoping to 1) learn more about wildflowers and their uses that grow here in the colder climate, might need some help with identification and possible correspondences. 2) I want to start a more involved indoor garden with herbs and flowers, expanding from my ususal houseplants and hope to get it going before fall. I will definetly need indoor plant lights, we do not have much sun in the winter so even windows wont help me! I nearly lost my new plants over the winter that I got when we moved here. Not again lol.

We have such a short growing season here, and this being my first full summer in Alaska I have a lot to learn about what may be available to me in the summer months. In my garden so far, I know I have rhubarb, some crabapple trees, another large flowering tree (white flowers in bunches) forget me nots (excited about those) and fireweed is soon going to be everywhere. Not much is identifiable in my yard yet as we had an extremely late spring.

I know forget me nots are related to love, true love, and remembering. I am kind of excited to work with them and add them to my list of favorite flowers. I am already working on a few spells/sachet ideas to use forget me nots. Fireweed is a pretty invasive weed but they are just pretty (I think) and I am working on uses for that as well.

Anyway, I will be posting pictures of my discoveries and notes through-out the summer. References that may be helpful to others especially on cold-climate wildflowers growing here in the North. Lots of indoor notes and reference as well, as I learn I hope others new to gardening can use this info also! Definetly tips or advice is much appreciated! I hope by next year to be more advanced and look forward to sharing this experience with everyone.

Thanks everyone, and happy gardening!!
"She's mad, but she's magic." -Charles Bukowski

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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:32 pm

~How to Grow Wiccan Herbs~ :flyingwitch:


Overview

For many Wiccans, growing herbs is more than just a rewarding hobby; it is a religious experience. Working in a garden is a powerful way for Wiccans to attune with the earth and honor Goddess and God. Wiccans use many herbs for sacred rituals and workings, and it is nice to know exactly where your herbs came from and under what conditions they were grown when using them for spiritual purposes. In addition, when growing your own herbs, you can lend them a bit of extra energy to help give a boost to your workings.

Step 1

Decide which herbs you want to grow. Healers might grow aloe for salves, coneflower (echinacea) for tonics, or comfrey for poultices. "Kitchen Witches," Wiccans who prefer more domestic-style magic done in the kitchen rather than elaborate rituals, might prefer mugwort for divination teas, basil for love potions, or licorice to add to sauces to bring peace to a troubled home. According to Scott Cunningham, author of Cunningham's Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs, some traditional powerful protection herbs are belladonna, foxglove and wolfsbane, but be cautious, as these plants are highly toxic. If you have limited space, choose a few of the most versatile herbs safe for ritual, culinary and medicinal uses: bay, catnip, chamomile, fennel, lavender, mint, mullein, pot marigold, rosemary, sage and thyme.

Step 2

Plan your gardening schedule by astrological moon phases for success. Wiccan herbs can gain a boost from planetary influences, according to Gene McAvoy, horticulture agent with the Hendry County Extension Service of the University of Florida Cooperative Extension. Herbs sown or transplanted when the moon is in Cancer or Scorpio will germinate quickly and produce profusely. Gemini is a barren sign which is bad for plant production, so it is a perfect time for weeding the garden. Look for books on astrological gardening, or see resources below.

Step 3

Use crystals to lend energy to your magical herbs. If your garden plot is square or rectangular, bury 5 quartz crystals in it: one in each corner, and one in the center. If your herb garden is circular, imagine a sacred pentagram laying over the circle and bury the quartz at what would be the five points. Place a carnelian at the base of each plant to encourage growth. Mix small pieces of amethyst in with soil whenever you are preparing a new bed to help cleanse the plot. When transplanting, place a hematite into the hole or at the bottom of a pot to encourage strong and deep rooting. Be sure to cleanse, consecrate and charge your crystals in your traditional ritual manner before using them in your garden.

Step 4

Water your Wiccan herbs with blessed water. You can create blessed water by collecting rain water then cleansing, consecrating and charging it as you would in your traditional ritual manner. You can add a few drops of vetivert or patchouli essential oil to promote fertility and prosperity. Place an amethyst in it to keep it cleansed and energized, and keep it in a jar or container with a lid. Fill your watering can with regular water, and add a splash of blessed water. At each new moon and full moon, water each of your herbs with the blessed water. Even if you have another watering system, add just a splash of the blessed water.

Step 5

Harvest herbs with a consecrated knife. Many Wiccans keep a boline (curved, usually white-handled, knife), a Wiccan ritual tool used exclusively for spiritual workings.

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Read more: How to Grow Wiccan Herbs | Garden Guides http://www.gardenguides.com/117136-grow ... z2VTuoUKg1
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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Thu Jun 06, 2013 6:49 pm

~Ten Best Herbs for Indoors~

•Basil: Start basil from seeds and place the pots in a south-facing window—it likes lots of sun and warmth.

•Bay: A perennial that grows well in containers all year long. Place the pot in an east, or west, facing window, but be sure it does not get crowded—bay needs air circulation to remain healthy.

•Chervil: Start chervil seeds in late summer. It grows well in low light but needs 65 to 70 degrees F temperatures to thrive.

•Chives: Dig up a clump from your garden at the end of the growing season and pot it up. Leave the pot outside until the leaves die back. In early winter, move the pot to your coolest indoor spot (such as a basement) for a few days, then finally to your brightest window.

•Oregano: Your best bet is to start with a tip cutting from an outdoor plant. Place the pot in a south-facing window.

•Parsley: You can start this herb from seeds or dig up a clump from your garden at the end of the season. Parsley likes full sun, but will grow slowly in an east, or west, facing window.

•Rosemary: Start with a cutting of rosemary, and keep it in moist soilless mix until it roots. It grows best in a south-facing window.

•Sage: Take a tip cutting from an outdoor plant to start an indoor sage. It tolerates dry, indoor air well, but it needs the strong sun it will get in a south-facing window.

•Tarragon: A dormant period in late fall or early winter is essential for tarragon to grow indoors. Pot up a mature plant from your outdoor garden and leave it outside until the leaves die back. Bring it to your coolest indoor spot for a few days, then place it in a south-facing window for as much sun as possible. Feed well with an organic liquid fertilizer.

•Thyme: You can start thyme indoors either by rooting a soft tip cutting or by digging up and potting an outdoor plant. Thyme likes full sun but will grow in an east, or west, facing window.


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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Sun Jun 09, 2013 4:59 pm

~Jasmine~

Easily grown indoors and many uses for magick, aromatherapy, and they are very pretty in the home!
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There are many types of jasmine. Many-flowered jasmine (J. polyanthum), and Arabian jasmine (J. sambac) are two of the easiest to grow; just give them plenty of light and moisture. They'll all bear fragrant pink to white blooms on vining plants.

Growing Conditions: Bright to intense light; 60-75 degrees F., 40-60 degrees F. in winter; keep soil evenly moist. It does very well in indoors in a pot where its fragrance will fill a space with sweet fragrance.

Why We Love It: The beautiful pink or white blooms are the some of the most fragrant you'll find on any houseplant.
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Magical correspondences: Jasmine can be used as incense, oil or perfume. The flowers are rare, but if you can find them (or grow yourself) they can be sprinkled on the bed or stuffed in a pillow to ensure a successful seduction. Jasmine is a great ingredient in love magick.

•Jasmine is good for bringing love, increasing sexual desire and promoting optimism; it can also alleviates depression, nervous exhaustion, doubts and both mental and physical impotence.

•Jasmine has a positive effect on the quality of sleep one gets, decreasing anxiety and improving the attitude one has after waking up. The smell of Jasmine doesn't make you sleep more, instead it makes your sleep time count for more.
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"She's mad, but she's magic." -Charles Bukowski

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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby Kassandra » Sun Jun 09, 2013 6:32 pm

.

Nice thread. Enjoy your foray into the green! I'm going on my own right now, and loving it! (my project today is making tooth paste --or powder, rather)

An idea came to me for you when I was reading your thread: try an indoor "vertical garden." There are lots of ways to build one, they're excellent for smaller spaces, etc. You could find the right lighting at a home store.

Here's some ideas: Vertical Gardens.

Just a thought. :wink:

Thanks for posting this idea. I'm going to snip, root and pot some jasmine first chance I get. I've only seen it as outdoor bedding, so it never even crossed my mind to grow it indoors. I love the idea of growing it indoors!


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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Wed Jun 19, 2013 12:51 pm

Thank you Kassandra, and I love your blog! Was working on one myself but have been a little side tracked. I do love some of the vertical ideas.

I had no idea about Jasmine either, I am excited to get some going indoors. I have more indoor flowering plants to post that I am excited to try. Hopefully after this moon and the craziness in my life subsides I can focus a little better!

Thank you again for the ideas and link to your blog, I really love it! :)
"She's mad, but she's magic." -Charles Bukowski

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Re: ~Gardening in the North~

Postby North Star » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:31 pm

~Indoor Peppermint Garden~
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Peppermint is one of the easiest plants to grow from seed, both indoors and outside. It would make for a great child's project or for the beginning gardener. Given free reign over an outdoor area, the aromatic herb can quickly and completely take over the space. The edible leaves and stems can be used for cooking as well as for garnishing drinks and desserts. Peppermint is a perennial plant that can live for many years and doesn't need to be fertilized when grown in pots inside.


Step 1
Fill the 2-inch pots with potting soil up to about 1/2-inch from the top. Scatter a pinch of the tiny seeds across the surface of the soil. Keep in mind that the fewer seeds you plant in each pot, the less you will have to thin them as they grow. Sprinkle about 1/16-inch of potting soil over the seeds.

Step 2
Fill the plastic spray bottle with water and spritz the surface of the soil to barely moisten it. Peppermint prefers a somewhat dry planting medium, so let it dry out between waterings.

Step 3
Set the pot in a very warm windowsill where it will receive plenty of light. Direct sunlight all day is best, although the peppermint will be fine as long as it gets lots of indoor lighting and a little natural sunshine each day.

Step 4
Thin the peppermint seedlings when they're about 2 inches tall. Leave one plant in each pot, or plant them in large pots if you can allow about 12 inches in between each plant.

Step 5
Keep the plants where they'll receive all the sunlight possible and maintain an ideal temperature of 70-80 degrees F. Move them to larger pots when they become pot-bound. Continue watering the mature plants when they dry out slightly.

Step 6
Trim off leaves and stems of the peppermint plant as often as you like after it is well established. You'll soon discover that it grows as prolifically as a weed, so pick all of the peppermint that you want for your own enjoyment.


gardenguides.com/growing peppermint
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