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May 20, 2007

I did do my medicinal herb garden. It only lacks sowing the chamomile seeds, but I took photos since those seeds won’t make any difference in what it looks like now. I decided on putting a row of rosemary directly in front of the lattice, I chose a variety that will grow up to 4 feet tall. Ruby Star echinacea anchors both ends of the rosemary. Lemon balm is on the far right back, next to the brick and behind the blooming Spanish lavender. Santolina is in front of the rosemary. (As a side note, I had never heard of santolina until a few days ago. It is an aromatic and is used as an insect repellent and in the old days people hung it upside down in their closets to keep it fresh. I’m thinking this will be good for sachets and such. The interesting thing is that this is really the only uncommon herb I found at our local nursery.) In front of the santolina, filling the center portion is peppermint and spearmint. The very front is where the chamomile will be because it only gets 8-10″ tall. The variety I have isn’t a perennial, so I will have to replant next year. I got these seeds as a free sample. I believe I will get the perennial chamomile next year. German chamomile is an annual and Roman chamomile is a perennial. (Another side note, both types of chamomiles have a chemical in them that colors their oils blue. German chamomile essential oil is inky blue and Roman chamomile essential oil is a faint blue.)

You may remember that moving the boxwoods was a compromise with Lawrence, since I wanted to just get rid of them and he didn’t. I moved them to line the front of our yard at our retaining wall and, although it was a compromise situation that spurred this arrangement, I really, really like it. It give the area a much more private feel. Maddy especially likes it because if they are rolling around on the grass, they won’t fall off the retaining wall now. I must admit that this hasn’t been a problem, but we can rest assured that it never will be now.
Here is an overall before shot.

Here is a closer before shot. After overall, you can see that the boxwoods look a little sparse now, but they will fill in nicely, and I won’t have to mow right next to the retaining wall anymore, which has been a real pain in the past.The after picture. Obviously the herbs will really fill out and cover the whole area eventually. The grayish green plant that really stands out is the santolina.

We made a jaunt out to the coast with Lawrence to deliver something for a customer out there and look at a job site for a job that we haven’t officially gotten, but have verbally been told we are doing. It is the home site of the friend of the customer we delivered to, it happens to be right down the road from this customer, so we didn’t even have to do out of our way to view it. This will be Lawrence’s view while he’s working. He thinks it is gorgeous, personally the view makes me nervous.And finally, I got a batch of ylang ylang citrus soap whipped out the other day. I had one mishap though. My favorite good knife, my beloved Global, was dirty, so I used another knife to cut the soap and that was a bad idea because it isn’t nearly as sharp, the soap started sliding when I was cutting it and the first bar ended up way too thick, which I cut down to size, but that left me with a short bar at the end, so I ended up with only five full size bars rather than six. Sorry, Angelina, I will have to owe you one ylang ylang citrus from a subsequent batch.

Now, we have a rainy day which means that the girls and I have devoted the day to spring cleaning indoors since we have been neglecting our house cleaning with all the great weather lately. I started cleaning yesterday afternoon, but then my dishwasher wasn’t draining and I had to break for a repair session, which Lawrence ultimately finished and now it appears to be working, let’s keep our fingers crossed. It’s the washer that is supposed to break before July 1, if anything. There was no deal for a new dishwasher!

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