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Posts Tagged ‘Johanna Paungger’

Royal Burgundy Bush Beans is wine box


The Moon moved into Virgo early this morning, which means I absolutely must garden this evening after work! My almanac, “Guided By The Moon” by Johanna Paungger and Thomas Poppe, says Virgo days “are the best days for almost every type of work in garden, field, and forest that is connected with setting, transplants and new planting.” (the only exception is lettuce, which will run to leaf too quickly) The seeds I planted on the last full moon are ready for permanent homes and some plants are not doing well in their spots, so transplanting and new planting is exactly what I’ll be doing. I don’t have a lot, but having Moon where it is was the perfect excuse to plan my evening for that. And, lo and behold, Sun is actually shining today. We have had so much coastal cloud cover this year that I’m planning a separate post just to list the plants that I lost due to lack of Sun, in San Diego!

I hope she doesn't eat much!


Yesterday, I harvested my Royal Burgundy Bush Beans. We only got a small bushel but it was enough for Tom and I to have a good side dish at dinner. They are beautiful and delicious and a little Gothic looking. I will be growing them again next year for sure. Not the same feelings for the Yellow Pencil Pod beans I grew at the same time. They didn’t do as well and the color was kind of anemic and not terribly enticing, except to our snails – ok by me because they stayed away from the purples.

Royal Burgundy Bush Beans


The camera, trooper that it is, didn’t really capture the luxuriously deep purple of these beans. When you break them open, they’re bright green inside and they cook to a regular ‘green bean’ color. We roasted them with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.

Wicked looking beans ready for roasting. Bwahahaha!


Next year I will plant more of these and I know now they grow best in the meditation circle. Most things do, to the point of leaving me no room to sit on my bench, which is presently covered with grape vines. Oh well, I don’t have time to meditate much these days anyway!

Hydrangea with droplets

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The love of gardening is a seed that once sown never dies.
– Gertrude Jekyll

our gnome who sits under the fig tree

That quote was chosen because this is the time to plant seeds! Also, her name is Gertrude, one of my favorite of the “vintage” names. One of my grandmothers was named Gertrude and it always upset me that they called her “Gertie” so I swore I would name my daughter Gertrude and never allow anyone to “Gertie” her. I was six and very silly, but I still love the name.

Well, the Moon is waning in Sagittarius and my almanac says it’s time for “planting and sowing all fruit and all vegetables that grow tall (runner beans, hops etc.)” Hops? Well, I’m not growing hops, but today I’m going to put my beans in seed starting mix and get them started. It will be raining by this afternoon when I’m done in the office, so I’ll be able to work in the garage or potting shed. Shouldn’t take long if I can keep myself to planting ONLY THE BEANS and not get distracted with a bunch of other things in the potting shed….like I always do.

Jack and the Beanstalk by Scott Gustafson


“Ah! you don’t know what these beans are,” said the man; “if you plant them overnight, by morning they grow right up to the sky.”

“Really?” says Jack; “you don’t say so.”

“Yes, that is so, and if it doesn’t turn out to be true you can have your cow back.”

Also “favorable” under this moon; “pruning fruit trees and bushes, putting down fertilizer, combating above ground pests.” Unfavorable; “hoeing and harrowing (weeds tend to grow in abundance afterward) and planting lettuce (tends to bolt)”

(info taken from Johanna Paungger’s “Guided by the Moon”, which is my most favoritest book EVER and I never garden without checking it first)

Edgar in the Sun - June 2009


Yesterday I planted:

*Cypress Vine – Funny Valentine Blend – Ipomoea quamoclit

*Hyssop – Hyssopus officinalis
“Used as early as the 7th century to improve the smell of kitchens and hospitals. Hyssop leaves are used to flavor salads, soups, liqueurs and stews. Essential oil used in perfumes. Attracts bees, buterflies and hummingbirds. Plants grow 18-24″. Perennial in zones 4-9.” (according to the back of the Seed Savers Exchange packet)

*Magnus Lovage – Levisticum officinale
“The leaves, stems and seeds of the lovage plant all taste like celery. Still used extensively in preparing soups and salads. Perennial in zones 2-8”

*Night-Scented Tobacco Nicotania sylvestris
“Flowers open in the evening releasing an extremely sweet, intoxicating fragrance. Tender annual.” (this one’s getting planted under my bedroom window!)

*Anise – Pimpinella anisum
“One of the oldest known spices in England, that first appeared in the Grocers’ Company of London. Added to bread and sausage in Italy for centuries. Wonderful strong licorice flavor. Very easy to grow, similar to dill in habit, harvest seeds when dry. Annual.”

*St. John’s Wort – Hypericum perforatum
“Highly esteemed medicinal herb since ancient times. Currently in high demand for its antidepressant qualities. Shrubby plant with yellow flowers. Grows to 12-16″ tall and flowers early. Perennial in zones 4-8.”

*Hollyhock – Black Beauty
These were a special gift in the mail from Lucie. Thank you Dahhling!

*Love-Lies-Bleeding – Amaranthus caudatus
“Recorded in South America before the 16th century, often referred to as Inca Wheat. Grown for use as a cereal and in ancient religious ceremonies. Long rope-like red seed-bearing trusses give plants and ornamental and graceful appearance. Great for long-lasting displays. Tender annual, 3-4′ tall.”

*Himalayan Blue Poppy – Meconopsis betonicifolia (oh say it again, you know you want to!)
“Stunning blue flowers make this one of the most sought-after plants in the gardening world. Best suited for cooler climates, but success can be achieved almost anywhere with a little practice and patience. Acts as a biennial or short-lived perennial, 30-35″ tall.”

*Red Milkweed – Asclepias incarnata
“Preferred food source of Monarch caterpillars. The bright pink and red flowers appear in June and July. Grows 5′ tall on moist soils that dry out in the summer. No butterfly garden is complete without Red Milkweed.”

*Thyme – Thymus vulgaris
because I always need more of it!

*Radicchio – Palla Rossa Ashalim – Cichorium intybus

Most of the above seeds were ordered from Seed Savers Exchange and the comments from the back of the packets were included. It seems like I plant a lot of seeds, but I’ve only planted a few of each. It’s early in the year and I’m experimenting with what I can grow from seed this early, if at all. Most of the packets are still more than half full, so there’s plenty of room for experimentation, trial and error: my favorite way of learning.

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