Tonight at the our class, we learned about two important and delicious aspects of your gardening career: seed saving and cooking with herbs. Before the lesson started, Mrs. Elbie gave each one of us a flower.
I was curious as to know what we would be doing with this lovely specimen. Mrs. Elbie soon began to explain to us what a flower is and the process of fertilization. The flower above is a complete and perfect flower.
A complete and perfect flower is one that has a stamen, pistils, petals, and sepals. If a flower is missing any of these parts, it is said to be incomplete.. The diagram below shows us the structure of a flower.
In case you were wondering,…..
The pistil is the female part of the plant. It consists of the stigma, style, and ovary. The stigma is located on top and is connected to the ovary by the style. The ovary contains the eggs, which reside in the ovules. After the egg is fertilized, the ovule develops into a seed. The stamen is the male reproductive organ. It consists of a pollen sac (anther) and a long, supporting filament. This filament holds the anther in position so the pollen it contains may be disbursed by wind or carried to the stigma by insects or birds.
As mentioned earlier, seeds form through pollination and fertilization. Pollination is the transfer of pollen from an anther to a stigma which occurs by wind or insect transfer. The stigma contains a chemical that stimulates,activity of pollen from the same type of plant, causing it to grow a long tube down the inside of the style to the ovule inside the ovary. The sperm from the pollen grain moves down the tube, and fertilization occurs. If fertilization is successful, the ovule will develop into a seed.
Saving seeds is one of the pleasurable activities that you can’t omelette with your garden. It allows you to save money and to reproduce your favorite crops. Instead of me attempting to explain seed saving for different types of plant (because I’m still learning about it myself), enjoy an excerpt from the class handout.
If you all have ever had some seed saving successes or failures that aren’t mention, feel free to comment below.
The second portion of the class involved one of our favorites: food. Cooking with herbs are one of the beauties of creating a herb garden. Herbs enhance the flavor of meats and veggies. They can even be eaten on their own or substituted for another food that you may be lacking in your pantry. Here are some delicious tips for herbs from Mrs. Cathy
1. One way to preserve basil is to add it to an ice cube tray. In order to do this, you should chop the basil into pieces, put it in the ice tray, fill with oil, and put it into the freezer. Be sure to put these in a zip lock bag. The next day, you should pop the cubes out and throw in into pasta or soup. Basil looses some of its flavor during drying, thus the ice cube tray method is a way to preserve the flavor.
2. Add a bit dill to salmon or fish. You can even make a dill dip for your seafood.
3. Rosemary. Delicious Rosemary. With this, you can quarter red potatoes (or any kind that you like); put them on a cooking sheet with baby carrots; drizzle a bit of olive oil (or any oil of your choice). Add to a preheated oven of 435 degree. On the veggies, you can add kosher salt, fresh cracked pepper, paprika and lots of rosemary. In the last 15 minutes of the roasting, add some squash, turnips, and/ or beets.
Using herbs can decrease your salt intake and also your blood pressure. You get more flavor from the herbs and they don’t take up much space in the garden. You can grow them almost anywhere, even in rocky soil.
Before the class was almost over, Mrs. Elibe put her flowers on the table, so I took the liberty to give them some photo time. Enjoy!
I even tried to take a picture with Mrs. Elbie. I think we look great! We even have on complimentary colors.
Information found in this post was taken from the handouts of the class.
by: Jalissa Hunter