Planting Information for:

Henry IV, Part 2

ACONITUMAconitum spp. Monkshood, aconite, wolf’s-bane, leopard’s bane

Zones 3 –7. Grows 2 – 4ft. tall. All parts of this beautiful perennial are poisonous. Blue, purplish or yellow flowers are hooded, shaped like a helmet, and held in spikes above lobed leaves. Grow in sun or part shade; not particular about soil but keep reasonably moist. Divide mature plants in spring or fall every 3 years or so to retain vigor. Start seeds outdoors or in a cold frame after first fall frost or start stratified (cold treated) seed indoors in spring. Cover lightly with soil. When large enough, plant out seedlings 12 – 18inches apart; mulch to conserve soil moisture. Always wear protective gloves when handling any parts of Aconitum including seeds.

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APPLE-JOHNMalus spp. Johnapple

Zones 3 – 8. Height 10 – 25 ft. or more. Apple-John refers particularly to apples that are stored, that will become wrinkly with age. Candidates include Grannie Smith, Red Delicious, and Gala. Buy bareroot or container-grown plants of your chosen variety. Select a site with well-drained fertile soil in full sun. Dig a hole twice as large as the root ball, then spread out the roots and plant so that the surface of the root ball is at ground level. Do not bury the bump (graft union) at the base of the stem. Backfill with soil, firm and water well. Seed-grown apples take many years to produce fruit.   

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ASPENPopulus tremula. European aspen

Zone 2 –8.  30 –70ft tall. Vigorous, deciduous tree with rounded, toothed leaves that flutter in the slightest breeze – hence “tremula”. Dramatic yellow fall foliage. Male &+ female catkins on separate plants in spring; the females bear seeds. Groves of basal suckers develop and become invasive over time. Best in humus-rich soil in sun or part shade. Dig a deep hole for container-grown or bare root stock; the plant should sit slightly below the soil surface. Spread out roots, set in hole and backfill; firm and water well, especially bare root plants. Start from seed as soon as they ripen; root cuttings, taken in late winter, root in 3 – 4 weeks.

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CARAWAYCarum carvi. Carrawaye, leather-coats, meridian fennel, Persian cumin

Zones 4 –10. 8 – 24inches tall. This biennial aromatic herb, related to fennel & parsley, produces a foliage rosette its first year; it blooms with umbels of lacy white flowers, followed by ridged “seeds” (actually fruits) the next. Select a full sun position with well-drained soil. Sow seeds in fall or spring about ½ inch deep; thin to 6 – 8 inches apart. Germination may be spotty; can interplant with fast-growing radishes or other crops. ‘Artemer’ is a superior cultivar.

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CORN – (see WHEAT).

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EBON(Y)Diospyros ebenum, Ceylon or Mauritius ebony.

Zones 10 – 12. 20 – 65ft. tall. This tropical evergreen tree is prized for its very hard black/brown heartwood. It is slow-growing and currently threatened. Thrives in fertile, moisture-retaining soil; intolerant of frost, shade, drought or salty conditions. Site in full sun as a specimen or shade tree. Harvest fully ripe fruits, remove & clean seeds at once (viability life is short). Sow seed horizontally in a moist 50:50 sand/soil mix. Germination takes about 7 days. Transplant when saplings are about 6 months old with good root systems. Container-grown seedlings are available.

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ELDERSambucus spp., commonly S. canadensis or S. nigra.

Zones 3 –9. Grows 8 –13 ft. tall. Shrubby, deciduous trees valued for their flattish heads of multiple small yellowish-white flowers followed by small nutrition-rich glossy black or blue-black berries. Select a sunny or partly sunny location with good drainage; incorporate well-rotted organic matter. Remove plant from container; tease any crowded roots. Dig wide planting hole somewhat deeper than the root-ball. Plant with the soil level slightly higher than before. Replace original soil, tamp to firm & water.

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ELMUlmus spp.

Zones 3 – 9. Grows 60 – 100 ft. Noble deciduous trees grown as specimens or street trees (elms tolerate urban pollution). Elms prefer full or part sun with fertile, well-drained soil. Select a cultivar resistant to Dutch elm disease, either started from seed or a cutting from a disease-resistant plant. Dig a large hole to accommodate the root ball, tease and settle the roots, backfill and tamp soil to firm. Water thoroughly and stake as necessary. Prune to remove crossed branches, dead & damaged growth while dormant.

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FENNELFoeniculum vulgare, F. v. azoricum, Florence fennel

Zones 4 – 9. Grows 4 – 6 ft. tall. This perennial herb is grown for its very finely cut, anise-flavored foliage and abundant seeds that follow airy umbels of yellow flowers. Biennial Florence fennel has swollen leaf bases & is eaten as a vegetable. Start seed, soaked overnight, in early spring (repeat in mid-summer) in a sunny spot with fertile, well-drained soil; when large enough thin to 12 – 18 inches apart. Reseeds readily. Plant away from vegetable crops, as it inhibits growth of many.

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FIG/FIGO – Ficus carica

Zones (5)7 – 10. Up to 20 ft. tall. Figs thrive outdoors in mild winter zones; elsewhere grow indoors in containers. Some cultivars (e.g., ‘Brown Turkey’) survive to Zone 5. Plant outdoors in full sun in average soil. Plant container-grown plants directly as usual, or plant in a larger container for patios or decks. Keep watered, mulch with organic matter or compost. Prune to thin branches if necessary. Figs produce fruit on new wood 1 – 2 years after planting, from early till late summer or early fall.

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GOOSEBERRYRibes uva-crispa

Zones 5 –9. 2 –4ft tall. Gooseberries grow on prickly bushes that bear shiny, deeply lobed leaves. Dangling, minute pinkish flowers appear in spring, followed by self-pollinated fruit. Site in full sun in acid to neutral, well-drained fertile soil. Plant bare-root or container-grown, 2 –3year-old plants, 3 – 4 ft. apart when dormant. Amend soil with compost, dig a deep enough hole, spread out roots, backfill with soil and firm, then water well. Prune dormant bushes to thin growth & encourage fruiting. Remove overcrowded stems to the base; trim back by half earlier season growth and main branches 1 – 3 buds from the base. Remove suckers.

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HEMP-SEED / HEMP(EN)Cannabis sativa.

All zones. 4 – 15 ft. tall. Annual hemp is grown for its strong fibrous stems. Soil must be well-aerated, rich & deep, with good drainage. Seed directly when soil reaches 42˚F or higher; sow seed about 1 inch deep and 4 inches apart. Growth is rapid; keep well-watered. The dense, leafy stems block out weeds. For fibers, harvest stems before seed develops; dry in rows, turning like hay; bale & process stems. CBD oil is extracted from the leaves, flowers and stems. Hemp oil is extracted from the seeds.

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HONEYSUCKLELonicera periclymenum. Woodbine, common honeysuckle

Zones 5 – 9. Grows 15 –22 ft. This deciduous, woody vine produces clusters of 2-inch trumpet flowers on young stems from mid-summer. Yellow-and-white flowers often flushed red; deliciously fragrant, attractive to hummingbirds; bird-attracting red berries follow. Plant containerized or bare root honeysuckles in spring or fall, in full sun to light shade, in organically rich, well-drained soil. Provide a structure to support this vine. Prune flowered wood immediately after bloom time.

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MANDRAKEMandragora officinarum. Common mandrake, Devil’s apples, love apple

Zones 6 – 10. Grows 6 – 8 inches tall. This perennial, mentioned in the Bible and commonly in folklore, is infamous for its “screaming roots” when dug, as well as its hallucinogenic & narcotic qualities. Plants produce a basal rosette of large tobacco-like leaves and solitary bell-shaped purple or blue flowers. Propagate by dividing the roots or from offsets; seed is slow & unreliable. Plant with the crown just at soil level in full sun with well-drained soil. In cool climates grow in containers which must be sufficiently deep (3 – 4 ft.) to accommodate the roots. Always wear gloves when handling poisonous mandrake.

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MUSTARDBrassica nigra, B. juncea black mustard, Indian mustard

Zones 9 – 10. Grows 15 –18 in. Grown for leafy salad crops and the production of table mustards and oils. In summer yellow 1.25-inch blooms attract countless pollinators. Spicy, round ¼-inch seeds are enclosed in 1.5-inch pods. Seeds scatter widely; mustard is a serious annual weed of waste roadsides and agricultural land. Average soil in light shade is satisfactory; in hot summer sun, plants will go to seed or bolt quickly; salad crops do best in cool soil in fall. 

Direct seed in early spring (soil temperature above 40˚F) through to late summer; thin to 4 – 8 inches apart in rows 6 – 12 inches apart, wider if for a seed crop.

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OLIVEOlea europea. European olive

Zones 8 – 11. Grows 15 – 20 ft. tall. Olives thrive outdoors in mild winter zones; elsewhere grow in containers to overwinter indoors. Primarily olives are grown for their fruits that are crushed to produce olive oil, used in kitchens worldwide. Native to the Mediterranean, evergreen male & female olive trees prefer free-draining, alkaline soil in full sun. Plant bare root or container-grown plants outdoors, preferably in fall before autumn rains. Dig a hole twice as big as the root-ball; tease and spread the roots, backfill and firm before watering well. Pot up plants for containers at any time and keep well-watered. Olives fruit on new wood, so prune to thin before spring bloom-time.

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PEACHPrunus persica.

Zones 4 –9. 4 –25ft tall. Grow both dwarf and standard fruit-bearing peach trees. They can be grown in large containers (5ft apart) or in-ground (18ft apart). A position in full sun with well-drained acidic, sandy soil is ideal; mulch with organic material and keep well-watered. Grow from pits outdoors in fall, or root young 9-inch soft-wood cuttings in spring. Rooting hormone aids in rooting. Commercially, peaches are grafted onto a vigorous stock plant. Protect peaches from pests and diseases. Expect some fruit drop in early summer, and plan to thin immature fruits then to ensure good-sized fruits later. In mid-summer prune out any stems blocking light to the interior to keep specimens healthy and vigorous.

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PEASCODPisum sativum. green peas

Zones 2 – 9. Grows 2 – 8 ft. Annual peas grow on vines. The seeds (peas) are enclosed in edible or inedible pods, according to the variety. Soak dry seeds overnight, then sow 1-inch deep and 2-inches apart in rows 12 – 24 inches apart outdoors as soil becomes workable in spring. Provide a sunny location with free-draining soil; amend with compost, wood ashes & bonemeal to improve fertility. Install supports (traditionally pea sticks) at planting time.

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PIPPINMalus spp. Apples, including several Pippin varieties.

Zones 3 – 8. Height 10 – 25 ft. or more. Heirloom Pippin apples are flavorful eaten fresh, and store well. Plant trees in well-drained, deep fertile soils in full sun. Dig a hole sufficiently deep & wide to accommodate roots. Remove plant from its wrapping (e.g., burlap) or container, tease the roots out and insert into the hole with the soil surface at ground level. Backfill, tamping gently as you go. Water thoroughly and apply mulch; insert a strong stake to support the trunk.

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PRUNESPrunus domestica

Zones 3 –9. Grows 15 – 30 ft tall. Prunes are the dried fruits of plum trees, eaten raw or stewed. Buy dormant sapling plum trees, balled & burlapped or containerized; plant in winter or early spring in a sheltered, sunny spot in well-drained, sandy loam soil, in. Dig a wide hole deeper than the roots, spread them out, and set on a low mound in the middle. If grafted, the graft union must be an inch or more above the soil surface. Backfill, tamping as you go. Water well & apply mulch. Stake if necessary.

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RADISHRaphanus raphanistrum ssp.sativus, R. sativus

Zones 2 – 10.  Grows 6 –18 inches tall. These cool season annual vegetables are high in nutrients and fiber. All parts of the plants are edible, although mostly it is the red roots that are eaten raw in salads. Fast-growing, spring is ideal for seeding, when roots will mature in under four weeks. Seed fall and winter crops from mid-summer into fall; these mature more slowly. Sow seed directly outdoors in sun in average, organic soil.  Rows set 12 inches apart are fine, with seeds about ½ -1inch deep and 1 inch from each other. Water well.

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ROSE (RED) – Red-flowering Rosa species, hybrids and cultivars

Zones 3 –8. Red roses signify love, respect and beauty. Roses require full sun with midday shade from intense heat. Plant in spring in well-drained, rich acid soil. Known for their prickly stems and faint to intensely fragrant blooms. Prune in early spring. Popular red/crimson cultivars include miniature ‘Red Beauty’, tea rose ‘Chrysler Imperial Rose’, shrub rose ‘Red Meidiland’, hybrid perpetual rose ‘American Beauty’, disease resistant ‘Super Hero’.

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RUSHES – Juncus, common rushes. Luzula, woodrushes, Typha latifolia, bulrushes, cattails. 

Zones 2 – 11. 6 –48 inches. Mostly perennial plants with insignificant flowers that often self-seed, cylindrical stalks, or hollow stem-like leaves. Tolerate soil moisture at the edges of ponds and bogs but can handle variable conditions. They prefer shade and infertile soils. Ancient civilizations used the on the floors to absorb bad smells or filled the stem with tallow or animal fat for candles. Grow as ornamentals in wet places from division of mature, established plants, or can sow seed after removing from the plant and soaking before sowing.

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WHEATTriticum aestivum, common wheat, and other species

Zones 7 – 10. Types of annual grass, 2 – 4 ft. tall, grown for their high carbohydrate seeds (grain) consumed as a staple cereal & ground for flour worldwide. Threshing separates seeds from chaff. Thrives in full sun in average well-drained soil. Winter wheat is sown 6 – 8 weeks prior to the ground freezing & is harvested the following summer. Spring wheat is sown as soon as the soil is workable in early spring for harvesting in mid–late summer.

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