This morning we awoke to just 22* so I was quite sure the garden would be totaled. Even the covered tomatoes and peppers were wilted from frost. Some of the herbs took it well though. Probably because they were clipped short. I'm not sure.
I'm thankful that I always have those lovely root veggies to keep my gardening going even if it frosts a few times. The carrots and spuds can take it and I like to keep them underground until the earth starts getting cold and freezing. I feel like I'm still gardening, but not doing a whole lot.
I began drying my herbs. I start by trimming off all the stems and letting the leaves dry on newspapers and towels. I prefer this method to hanging little bunches all over. It always seems so messy to me to strip dried leaves off stems and have everything in a crumbly heap. I prefer the whole leaves in tact. The process of drying herbs got me to thinking more about herb teas, herbal oil infusions and all that good stuff, which reminds me that I still have some lovely peppermint and spearmint to gather in. I forgot about them, but they seemed to fare the frost just fine. One of the good, herby things that I decided to try for the first time is Fire Cider. It's a concoction of everything hot: onions, garlic, peppers, horseradish, peppercorns (among other additions) all covered up with apple cider vinegar. It is left in a quart jar for 4-6 weeks with a daily shake to help move the good things around to infuse the vinegar. The concoction is then strained and honey is added to taste. It can be used as a tonic for the immune system or as a warmer-upper or as a tonic for colds and flu. I'm thinking it would make a good hot toddy for cold nights. If you're interested in Fire Cider, click here for a recipe and for a good video by Rosemary Gladstar who is an herbalist who I think is so interesting to listen to. She explains the goodness behind Fire Cider.
Tomorrow will be a warmer day and I hope to continue clearing the old, frozen vines off the garden and pull up the dead bean plants and such. It'll be good to clean things up and put a few things away into the garage for next year. The three neighbor-grands will be over for the day and we will surely enjoy a fall-ish day together outdoors. There are already a few golden leaves falling from the trees. We might make a chai tea in the afternoon and have a cookie. Sounds good, doesn't it? I hope all is well with you. Thanks for stopping by.