Boneset is a great addition to your medicinal herb garden. It is often used for treating the symptoms of influenza, reducing fever, and is helpful for all sorts of aches and pains.

Also called Indian Sage, boneset is native to eastern and central North America. This herb is actually a perennial daisy that grows 2 to 4 feet tall. The long white flower heads bloom from June to September.

The entire above-ground plant is useful. The leaves, stem, and flowers can all be dried and used medicinally. Use it in both teas and tinctures. The name “boneset” was given because the tea was often used to “break bone fever.” The smell of dried boneset is rather mild, but the taste is quite bitter.

The best time to sow boneset is late summer to early fall. Grow in part shade to full sun.

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hand sowing seed

Save Your Own Seed – And Save Some Cash!

One of my very favorite reasons for planting heirloom seeds in my garden is the fact I can save my seed from one year to the next. Saving your own seed is both economical and easy to do, and well … it’s also one more step towards living a simple, old-fashioned off-the-grid lifestyle.

When I first started gardening, I was amazed at how much money I put into my plants. Of course, I was buying transplants at the nursery and we all know that costs a pretty penny. Within a few years, I learned to start my own plants from seed instead and that saved me quite a chunk of change. But, it wasn’t until I discovered the art of saving my own seed from my heirloom plants that I really was able to garden for just pennies on the dollar!

Seed saving is not a difficult skill. Our ancestors knew how to do it. In fact, they had to do it! Even beginning gardeners can master the art of seed saving. Like most other good things in life, you just have to take the time to learn the process. Once you know how to save your own seed, you’ll be amazed at the money you can save by collecting your own seed each year from your harvest.

There are several methods for saving your seed, depending on the plant you want to save from. The methods will vary a little, as some plants will require a few additional steps in the seed-saving process. And right now during harvest time, it is the perfect time to learn how to save your own seed for next year’s garden.

The Only Seed Saving Course You’ll Ever Need
Our team at Heirloom Solutions has taken the time to lay out everything you need to know in order to master the art of heirloom seed saving, right from the comfort of your own home. We’ve compiled the very best seed saving methods and tips together into an easy-to-follow DVD resource you’ll want to have in your home library. Old Time Heirloom Seed Saving is one of our most popular DVDs, and there’s nothing quite like it out on the market.

If you’re looking for information about saving your own seed from your heirloom varieties, then look no further. Heirloom Solutions’ Senior Botanist, Nick Huizenga, will guide you through the entire process of extracting and drying seeds for all crop types, from start to finish. From vegetables to flowers to herbs, this comprehensive DVD is filled with detailed, step-by-step explanations.

Having this priceless how-to material on DVD is really handy because you can follow along, using the seeds right from your own garden. Just pause the instruction as you need to, and start again when you’re ready, on your own time. It’s like having your own personal teacher to mentor you in the art of old-time seed saving.

For a limited time, we’ve slashed the price on our Old Time Heirloom Seed Saving DVD50% off the regular price! This special is exclusive to our newsletter readers, as a way of saying thank you for reading each week. If you’ve ever wanted to learn how to save your own heirloom seed, now is the perfect time to grab this DVD and get started. But hurry, this special won’t last, and we’ve only got a limited amount of them in stock.

To order your Old Time Heirloom Seed Saving DVD, click here.


6 Easy Ways To Better Water Your Garden

It’s late July and the weather is hot, hot, hot. Your garden needs adequate water reserves to survive in the dog days of summer. Here are some of our best tips to help you water your garden well.

1. Check your soil.

Before you water, check the soil’s moisture. Stick a finger into the soil, about 3 inches deep. If the soil feels dry, you should water. If the soil is moist below the top 2 inches of soil, but drier on top, you can water at a later time. Anything below the top 2 inches of soil should be moist for your plants to take up water. Be sure to check soil moisture frequently.

2. Water at the right time for best results.

If you can, water your plants in the early morning hours. In the warm temperatures, you’ll want to give your plants adequate time to soak up the moisture before the sun beats down. Watering early in the morning allows your plants to retain the most moisture possible.

If you can’t water in the morning, water your plants in the evening after the heat of the day has passed. But don’t water them too late either. Plants need to dry off before the sun goes down in order to avoid encouraging disease.

Do not water in the heat of the day (midday to early afternoon) if at all possible. This will waste your water, as much more moisture will be lost to evaporation by the heat of the sun. Watering frequently in the heat of the day will also train your plants to crave more water than they really need.

3. Water deeply.

Most plants need approximately one inch of water each week. More established plants will not need as much moisture because of extensive root systems. New transplants will need much more water as they have small, often immature root systems. And, seeds and seedlings will demand moisture like a newborn baby needs their mother’s milk.

Make sure you water deeply and evenly, without drowning your plants. Uneven watering can lead to problems like blossom end rot. And remember, rain water is always preferred over tap water. Use water from rain barrels if you can. Soaker hoses are a great way to make sure your plants are watered evenly.

4. Don’t drown your plants.

While water is critically important, you don’t want to drown your plants! Too much of a good thing can actually kill them. Overwatering your plants will cause root rot, plant disease, and a whole host of other problems. Waterlogged plants will take up less oxygen and nutrients from the soil. Follow tip #1 above and check your soil before watering to make sure your plants really need it. Don’t just water plants for watering’s sake.

5. Avoid top-down watering.

Some plants, like tomatoes, grow better when you water them at the base of the plant and keep their foliage nice and dry. Some plants can become sick or diseased if their foliage stays too wet. (Of course, you can’t avoid this with Mother Nature’s rain.) Soaker hoses are a good idea for this reason. They will water your plants without wetting the foliage.

If you must water with a nozzle sprayer, make sure you are watering the plant at the base as much as possible. Always water gently with these methods. Misting your plants or using the “gentle shower” setting is usually your best bet.

If you use a traditional sprinkler, make sure you are actually watering your garden and not the sidewalk or other areas.

6. Mulch away!

Placing a good layer of organic mulch around the base of most plants will help keep water in the soil. If you don’t believe me, try it! Mulch one plant and leave another of the same plant un-mulched. You’ll quickly notice how much more you will need to water the un-mulched plant. I guarantee it!

Compost, dried (untreated) grass clippings, straw, shredded leaves, pine needles, and wood chips make for good mulch. Added benefits of mulch? It will keep your plants cooler and will also discourage disease.

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