The Kitchen Potager is a small plot, the equivalent in size to many small backyard spaces, located at the home of Jerry Fritz Garden Design, Linden Hill Gardens. Each year, I add a garden section within the 40′x40′ footprint. Designed the garden to offer food, herbs and flowers throughout the year, we try to extend the seasons as long as possible.
Enticing us into the garden during the chilly spring months are perennial or fall planted favorites: fragrant viburnum carlesii, garlic, flamboyant tulips and luminescent golden oregano. Fruit, vegetables, and flowers are abundant through the summer and I try to make sure there are still items to pick for favorite holiday recipes by planting our favorite hardy vegetables including lacinato kale, brussel sprouts and collards. Unfortunately, many our flavorful friends will not survive the first frost. As sweater weather arrives, it is now more urgent to savor the moments with sweet cherry tomatoes and to sip fresh lemon verbena tea. We become increasingly aware of the mysterious date approaching when a chill will knock at our door and end the season abruptly.
Last fall, we were in the middle of our 9 week Herbs for Medicine Course with Sharon Moncrief, The Greenbrier Herbalist when the early winter guest arrived. Luckily there was a warning, so we quickly gathered sensitive botanical friends to preserve. As the snow fell outside, herbs and plants covered every indoor table as we begun to capture their benefits. A “free” apothecary’s chest was created to ease us through the chilly winter to heal skin, boost immune our systems and offer botanical cures for what ails. Every participant in the class was an experienced cultivated grower, yet learned about the foraged plants and their wild cures. Last spring, I was quite frustrated with chickweed, mallow and plantain growing in the garden. This season, I smiled at the site and cultivated these previously unwelcome garden guests for nutritious or healing properties. Now that I understand the benefits of these wondrous weeds, The Kitchen Potager now feels like a vibrant party during each season – everyone is welcome to let their true character blossoms!
If you are interested in learning more about your garden’s botanical benefits, please join us for this valuable 9 week course, Herbs for Medicine. The introduction begins Sunday, September 23rd and then takes place every Wednesday from 6:30-9:00 pm September 26th until November 14th. $395 per person Registration required by September 19th. Questions, please call 215.767.4051