Organic Growers School Part 2

Continuing from my post yesterday….
Three more classes to go! Next up was “Effortless Edibles in your Landscape”. This was probably my favorite out of all of them! Our teacher was a Master Gardener that believed in using every available space in the yard to grow edibles. Yummy treats like kiwis, raspberries(not her fave, mine), blueberries, asparagus,persimmons(seedless variety), asian pears, figs, apples and something called paw paws??? Has anyone had a paw paw before? Since we were up in North Carolina, I was figuring that they could only grow there but was told otherwise so I may try this fruit that is flavored like a banana and a mango.

I am so ready to plant!
On to “Ten Appalachian Wild Medicinal Plants”! Even though I have taken a medicinal herb class before, this was helpful because I learned a few more plants as well as how and where to harvest.
Some rules to follow when harvesting:
Make sure you have positively identified the plant.
Don’t gather plants from polluted areas like roadsides or industrial areas.
Wild plants are under constant pressure from habitat loss, invasive species and overpicking. so don’t pick the first plant you see, look around to see if there are more.
Gather from prime locations where the plants are thriving, then pick from the center not the edges.
Never pick more than 1/3 of the plants from a single stand. you should be able to turn away from the plants, turn around again and not be able to see that you have picked.

One great medicinal to share: YARROW
Harvest flowering tops, top 3rd of the plant where stem is not too woody. Can make a tincture from fresh leaves and flowers, a tea, or dry a bunch to make a powdered herb in a first aid kit to stop bleeding. Main use is to stop bleeding topically and internally.

Well the last class of the day was all about Heirloom Apples! I do want to plant apple trees but oh there is alot more to be learned about them before I go buying a couple trees. By this time of day, my eyes have glazed over and I knew I needed to drive back home. Can’t wait to share notes with my other friends that attended the conference!!!

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