Walk RoundAbout Kits Sunday, August 25

Have you wondered who are the people that look after the roundabout (traffic circle) and corner bulge gardens in our neighbourhood?

You can meet several of the Green Streets and boulevard volunteer gardeners on this walk “roundabout” Kits!


The walk route is as follows
2pm Wired Monk -2610 West 4th –  chat for gardeners who have received Neighbourhood Small Grants for their gardening projects. Hear about some upcoming projects too,like the boulevard near Wired Monk and a bench and Little Free Library coming to 2nd and Trafalgar.

Check our my neighbour’s Pallet garden on Trafalgar between 5th & 6th -en route to the (famous!) Mary Go-Round About: Bring a bag and scissors – and help yourself to herbs!
We’ll serve you a glass of lemonade made from herbs (and lemons!)

We’ll head to Lord’s Grace church 8th & Balsam where they’ve made a free herb garden from pallets (and some ingenuity). We’ll provide cheese and crackers and people can snip herbs to add.

We’ll make a short stop at Broadway & Balsam . Elayne Armstrong’s garden won best
bee and butterfly corner bulge and best composition.
Then we’ll head to Verdella and Gabriel’s garden at 10th & Yew.
Around 3:30, we’ll wind up at Linden Tree Place – 8th & Vine – Jacquie and Ray will greet us and
take us to rooftop garden. More snacks to enjoy while chatting with the Gardening Committee.

Register here.



Chocolate Mint: Herb of the month!

The chocolate mint is flourishing at the Mary-Go-Roundabout garden at 6th and Trafalgar. Go and pick a bit – just scratch and sniff while you’re walking or pick some to take home and make tea or add to an ice cream or sherbet dessert as garnish.

Learn about chocolate mint here.

Chocolate mint ice cream recipe here.

How to make a cup of chocolate mint tea – and more tips.

Add a few leaves to your coffee grounds before brewing for a special chocolate peppermint coffee. Can be added to brownies, cakes, ice creams and more for an herbal treat

Use chopped chocolate mint tossed with fresh sliced strawberries, raspberries or chopped pears; for herb tea; infused in milk for hot chocolate (strain milk before using); add about 1/4 cup chopped to your favourite brownie batter; infuse in hot cream for chocolate truffles (strain before using); with a bit of melted chocolate in crepe batter for strawberries or raspberries; in a chocolate fondue or sauce (strain before using).

Herb of the Month: Lemon Balm

Mary-Go-Round, the new name for my RoundAbout garden (traffic circle) at 6th & Trafalgar presents: Herb of the Month.

This month: Lemon Balm!



(Melissa officinalis)

perennial herb in the mint family. The leaves have a gentle lemon scent. During summer, small white flowers full of nectar appear. These attractbees, hence the genus name Melissa (Greek for ‘honey bee’). The crushed leaves, when rubbed on the skin, are used as a repellant formosquitos.Lemon balm is also used medicinally as an herbal tea, or in extract form. It is claimed to have antibacterial and antiviralproperties.Lemon balm has been shown to improve mood and mental performance. (Summarized from Wikipedia)

Message from Mary

You can’t pick this too much – Go crazy. And if you want a plant of your own, just dig a bit up and give it a good home.

Pinch a bit and sniff it. Take some home to clip for salads or tea. Doesn’t dry well – Use fresh.

Recipes from Jane

Lemon Balm Salad Dressing

1 cup lemon balm, shredded

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1 cup olive oil

salt / pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

Cover tightly and chill for 1 hour until flavors have blended.

Lemon Balm Cookies

2 tbsp. minced lemon balm leaves

1 tsp. lemon juice

1 c. butter, softened

2/3 c. sugar

1 egg

2 1/3 c. all-purpose flour

1/4 tsp. salt

Whole lemon balm leaves for garnish

In small dish, combine first 2 ingredients, press mixture with back of spoon to blend. In large mixer bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in egg and lemon mixture. Gradually beat in flour and salt. Cover and refrigerate 3 hours or until firm. Roll in wax paper. Preheat oven to 350°F. On wax paper slice into slices about 1/8″ thick. On ungreased cookie sheet bake 8 to 10 minutes. Will brown slightly around edges.

Yield: about 60 cookies.

Lemon Balm Lemonade

4 lemons

1/2 c fresh lemon balm leaves

1/2 cup sugar

2/3 cup boiling water

2 1/2 cups water

ice (optional)

2 -3 fresh sprigs lemon balm, to decorate

Scrub the lemons well. Peel the rind thinly, avoiding the white pith, and set aside the lemons.

Place the lemon rind, lemon balm leaves, and the sugar into a small heat-proof pitcher. Pour the boiling water into the pitcher and stir well, crushing the lemon balm leaves to release their flavor. Leave mixture to infuse for about 15 minutes.

Cut the lemons in half and squeeze out the juice. Strain juice into a large glass pitcher, add a few fresh sprigs of lemon balm, and add the cooled, strained syrup. Top up with water or half-water half-ice, and chill until needed.



See http://www.kitsecoarts.wordpress.com/herb

for the featured herb each month – including recipes.