Planting Information for:
APPLE – Malus domestica
The sweet edible fruit of the long-lived tree that grows worldwide. The tree reaches 6 to 15 ft., depending on the cultivar, in loamy well-drained rich neutral soil, full sun, on a north or northeast-facing slope. Zones 3 – 8; hardier species do best in northern zones; long-season types in
Zones 5 – 8.
Apple trees must cross-pollinate to develop fruit. During the flowering season
pollinators, most often honeybees, are used. Apple trees may have been the earliest tree that humans cultivated.
BARLEY – Hordeum vulgare
An annual, cool season fast-growing grass that grows 2 – 4 ft. tall, Barley is a major cereal grain grown in temperate climates globally, Zones 3 – 8. It is drought resistant. Barley can be grown on a wide range of soil types from heavy clays to light or sandy loam, alkaline, well drained in dry mild climates; it is not winter hardy.
BURDOCK – Arctium / Great Burdock – Arctium lappa (Burs, too—see backcover of book, beautiful but boy do they stick!)
Biennial that’s native to Europe & Asia, now introduced throughout most of Europe, Britain, & east to northern Asia. Considered a weed, the plant grows in sandy, loose neutral to limey soil along river banks, disturbed habitats, roadsides, vacant lots, & fields in Zones 3 and higher.
Tiny hairs from the seeds are toxic if inhaled, but roots & stalks are edible.
Flowers from July through to October provide pollen & nectar for honeybees.
BURNET – Sanguisorba minor (Salad Burnet, Garden Burnet, Small Burnet)
A short-lived perennial plant typically found in dry grassy meadows. It is drought-tolerant, & grows all year round in relatively infertile, well-drained soils, slightly acidic to mildly alkaline. Zones 4 – 8.
Burnet is usually grown from seed sown directly in the garden in full sun. The seeds spread freely, so the plant can be invasive. The salad burnet plant is frost, cold & drought tolerant, and is often found growing well in disturbed soils, such as along roadsides. It is used as an ingredient in both salads & dressings.
CARNATION (Gillyvors/Gillyflowers) – Dianthus, Dianthus caryophyllus
Annual. Plants need full son, but protection from direct heat, in Zones 3 – 4 to 8 – 9, depending on the variety. Soil should be rich and loamy, prepared a few weeks before planting, well drained & never over watered.
Small plant usually reaching 18–24” high, bearing countless varieties of flowers—single or multi-petaled, in shades of reds, pink, yellow, white, & striped/striated.
CLOVER (SWEET CLOVER) – Trifolium Melilotus;
WHITE CLOVER –Trifolium repens
RED CLOVER – Trifolium pratense
Small annual or biennial legume, with about 300 species, distributed in the temperate & subtropical regions, Zones 3 – 8 in a great range of soils and climates, in full sun or part shade. Soil should be deep, well drained, and loamy.
Fragrant white, occasionally pink, flowers are highly attractive to bees.
COWSLIP – Primula veris
Small perennial native throughout most of temperate Europe and western Asia, from Zones 5 – 9, in dry grassy banks and open fields, pastures, meadows, coastal dunes & clifftops, preferring semi- shade in warmer areas. Soil can be sandy to heavy with
variable pH, including highly alkaline. Frost tolerant, the plant grows to about a foot tall, bearing fragrant yellow flowers in April and May.
DARNEL – Lolium temulentum
A ryegrass often called “false wheat”, because it usually grows in the same areas, and alongside, wheat. You probably wouldn’t want to grow it but… Soil is light clay or heavy loam, in a warm dry climate, Zones 3 – 7, where average temperature is about 60 degrees & several inches of rainfall annually into good drainage.
Darnel is poisonous. The seeds, eaten in small quantities, cause dizziness & nausea; large quantities are fatal.
DOCK – Rumex
A common annual, biennial, or perennial herb (or weed) found in poorly maintained turf & grassland pastures throughout the continental U.S. & around the world in all soil types, generally in full sun. Hardy in Zones 4 – 8. This plant does not require any help or special conditions to propagate.
Young leaves are edible. And crushed, can take the sting out of a brush with Nettles.
ELDER/ELDERBERRY – Eurasion: Sambucus nigra,
North American native: S. canadensis
Often found growing in old fields & meadows, Zones 3 – 8 in cool, moist, partly shaded neutral forested areas of the Northern and Southern hemispheres. Requires cross pollination; plant in pairs in spring, no more than 60 feet apart; plants will grow rapidly up 10 – 12 ft. tall & wide, will readily naturalize. Small red, blue-black, black, or yellow berries provide food for wildlife & for people.
FIG – Ficus carica
An ornamental small tree grown throughout the world in Zones 6 – 8 for its fruit; some new hardy cultivars can tolerate Zone 5. Most soil types, well drained with plenty of organic matter, and loose textured so the roots can reach groundwater sources like aquifers & ravines.
Full sun all day to produce good fruit; protect from severe winters. Fruit will appear after about 2 years, but sometimes as long as 6 years after planting.
FLOWER DE LUCE
Iris florentina is the white flowered variant of Iris germanica
IRIS - Iris germanica
A genus of 260–300 hardy perennial species with showy flowers on long, erect stems & flat long leaves arranged fan-like from the rhizomes. In Zones 4 – 9 sited in at least 6 hours of sun a day in variably textured soil, slightly acidic to neutral & very well drained, while well watered. Rhizomes need a bit of sun & air to keep dry, so should not be completely covered with soil or crowded by nearby plants. Flowers bloom early to mid summer in shades of blue, orange, yellow, pink, white and multicolors; attracts butterflies & hummingbirds.
FUMITORY/COMMON FUMITORY – Fumaria officinalis
An annual flowering plant, found as a common weed in sunny gardens, fields, waste grounds in well-drained light sandy, loamy & chalky soils, as well as on shores, in temperate Zones 3 – 8; withstands frost long into autumn.
Although it has some traditional herbal benefits, its stems are poisonous.
GINGER – Zingiber officinale
A flowering perennial whose root is widely used as a spice and a folk medicine. Reedy stalk grows 3 – 4 ft. tall in warm, humid locations in Zones 9 to 12 in part shade—a few varieties can survive down to Zone 7, but must be harvested in the fall & protected from strong winds. Soil should be loose, rich & loamy, retaining some moisture, but draining well. Benefits from regular light misting.
GRASSES – Gramineae family
True grasses include cereals, bamboo, turf, and grassland growing either wild or cultivated on lawns and pastures. Plants from the grass family can grow in many environments including very cold or very dry locations, most in full sun & well-drained crumbly soil. Turf grasses grow best in temperatures from 60° – 75°F. And thrive as day length increases.
HEMLOCK – Conium maculatum
A highly poisonous biennial flowering plant native to Europe and North Africa now naturalized almost everywhere at elevations below 5,000 ft. Poison hemlock typically grows up to six feet tall in wet soils, but can tolerate semi-dry conditions. Found in gardens, in pastures, and in crops in coastal regions, meadows, roadside ditches, disturbed fields, and urban lots.
It should removed from any location where people or animals might be tempted to eat or even touch it.
HEMP – Cannabis sativa strain
Annual plant sometimes confused with the cannabis plants that are the sources of marijuana & related drugs. However, hemp does not produce enough THC to create intoxicating effects. It is grown for its fiber in neutral deep, fertile soil rich in organic material & nitrogen but low in calcium; ideal conditions reside in Zones 3 – 6, with full sun & moderate temperatures between 66 o – 77o F and at least 20–30 inches of rainfall or irrigation during the growing period.
LEEK – Allium ampeloprasum
Biennial slow-growing mild-flavored member of the onion family. Frost tolerant in Zones 7 and warmer, leeks can be left in the ground to be harvested as needed through winter. Plant deeply in full sun in loose rich well-drained but consistently moist slightly acidic soil rich with organic matter and nitrogen—add compost to the leek bed the season prior to planting. As the plant grows, soil should be mounded around the stems to create the pale blanched stems.
NETTLES/STINGING NETTLES – Urtica dioica
A fast-growing perennial originally native to Europe, much of temperate Asia and western North Africa, now found worldwide in Zones 3 – 10. The stems and the leaves are covered by structures that look like hairs but are delicate & hollow. A brush or light encounter with them produces a sting that amplifies to a burning rash lasting up to 24 hours. Nettle requires rich & loamy damp soil in full sun or part shade, especially in low areas.
(Also part of the English name of many plants with stinging hairs.)
NUTMEG/MACE – Myristica fragrans
Nutmeg is the dried seed of an evergreen tree; mace is the seed covering. Zones 10 & 11. The tree originates in Banda, the largest of the Molucca spice islands of Indonesia; it requires a hot, mostly sunny site protected from wind, in rich, organic medium-textured soil, moist, but well drained, with its roots planted at least 4 ft. deep.
STRAWBERRY – Fragaria
A genus of more than 20 species of flowering and their edible fruit, native to the temperate regions, Zones 3 – 8 of the Northern Hemisphere. Strawberries require full sun at least 6 hours a day in a site away from trees or any shrub that will shade the site. In cool Zones, 3 – 4, they should be planted in late May, but in the warmer Zones to 8, plant in mid spring. Soil should be slightly acidic, rich in organic matter, loamy & kept moist but containing some sand so it is easily drained.
Plants are propagated from runners that can be pegged down to encourage them to take root or cut off and placed in a new location.
SUGAR – Saccharum officinarum
Several species of tall perennial tropical true grasses six to twenty feet tall. Grows in full plentiful sunshine Zones 8b and warmer in many types of very fertile soil, well drained, but with a minimum of 24 inches annual moisture.
THISTLE – Cirsium discolor
A widely distributed herbaceous plant, varieties of which can be annual, biennal, or perennial. Thistles have a prickly stem 2 to 8” tall, rounded heads of purple flowers & a large taproot with coarse secondary roots that spread and produce new plants. Often classified as a noxious weed, depending on the species, but many are beneficial.
They grow in pastures (usually overgrazed), meadows, wood edges & openings, field borders, abandoned fields, roadsides & domestic gardens.
VIOLET – Viola odorata
Viola and violet are small-flowered annuals or perennials producing lightly fragrant—and tasty—flowers of the same color; some varieties have white or yellow blooms. Most species are temperate Northern Hemisphere, Zones 3 – 8.
Light shade, but fine in sunny locations. While they tolerate many soil types, wild violets prefer soil that is moist, yet well-draining, rich in organic matter. Wild violets often self-seed, coming back each year in unexpected locations. The flowers that are low on the plant do not open, but instead produce and house seeds, allowing the plant to readily reproduce & become invasive.