Thursday, June 3, 2010

Oh My Darlin', Lemon Thyme

Oh, look - more photos of Sara's windows!  Bet you're so glad you used the energy to click on over here, right?  Well, today's occasion is that I'm now the proud owner of some plant babies.  Last weekend, Bo and I wandered through the garden department at Lowe's.  Which is to say that I spend an inordinate amount of time touching the plants, smelling their leaves, soaking up the fresh air, and quietly whining that I don't have the money or time to bring home truckloads of them.

I finally settled on some herbs and a window box for my kitchen window.  I chose them based on smell.  (This is the part where Bo chimes in that I'm forever lifting items up to my face to smell them.)  (It's true.  I do.)   Buying a mint plant was a no-brainer and only took me half a second to snatch one up for our cart.  Mint always, always, always reminds me of summers in Washington state at my grandparents' house.  That region is covered in crops, and when we were younger, there were mint fields as far as the eye could see.  In the warm evenings, the farmers would harvest the mint, filling the valley with the most amazing scent.  Just the smell of the leaves makes my soul happy.

The view from my kitchen sink.
Purty, huh?  Have I mentioned yet today how much I love living here?

I also rescued a lavender plant (whose scent will always remind me of our blissful vacation in Cabo 2 years ago) and a lemon thyme.  I have no earthly idea if I'll actually use any of these plants in cooking or baking; I'm content just to gaze at them lovingly from my kitchen.  And from time to time, I go outside to whisper sweet somethings to them and to brush my fingertips through their leaves.

We all know that my need for things to be even and symmetric (3 cheers for OCD!) 
means I'll be buying another window box soon...

Lavender             Mint                   Lemon Thyme

Citronella Mosquito Plant

Have you ever heard of these??  I hadn't!  I have no idea if they're at all effective, but I was so intrigued, that we brought two of them home.  If you run your fingers through their leaves, they smell exactly like citronella!  Evidently, this is a member of the geranium family and not a true Citronella plant (which is actually Lemongrass. Click here if you want to read about how to use a Citronella plant for natural insectides and bug repellants.)  But, supposedly, if I macerate a few leaves from my Geranium here, and either place them in bowls in window sills or rub them on my arms, the bugs will keep away.  That's terribly exciting news for me because mosquitos hunt me down.  I can be in the same room as Bo, and the final bug bite score is Bo: 0, Sara: 8.  I'm told that the mosquitos here are the size of small cats, so I figure any little bit can help, right? 

If you've ever tried this plant (or the Lemongrass Citronella, or even Catnip) for bug repellant, please let me know!  I'd love to be able to ward off the little demons without having to use something from a can.  (And I abhor the smell of Skin So Soft.)


  1. Ooo...those sound intriguing! I want some, too! I've been averaging 2-4 bug bites per 20 minutes outside. At this rate it'll look like I have the chicken pox by...Tuesday.

  2. Beautiful! Love your view! I have no luck with any herbs other than a giant rosemary bush outside my door!

  3. Beautiful! :} If you have an iPhone, there's actually a mosquito repellent app! How crazy is that!?

  4. Oh, I love your window box. I am soooo jealous! interested to hear how it works as pesky critter repellent.

  5. Love your plants!!!....ha ha ha, even before I read your post, I saw your pic of only ONE window box, and I thought....that doesn't look like Sara! Glad to know you will be fixing that :-)


    Atlanta looks like OR :-)