In Basket: March 2012

The Herb Companion readers discuss growing heirloom roses, identifying crimini mushrooms, growing strawberries in Texas, and more in this month’s “In Basket.”


| February/March 2012


Growing Heirloom Roses

For 10 years, I’ve grown heirloom roses, including ‘Teas’, ‘Chinas’, ‘Bourbons’, ‘Noisettes’ and ‘Hybrid Perpetuals’. I have several dozen thriving in my Zone 7b garden. I love the antique roses for their complex history, charming names and fragrant, old-fashioned elegance that is so different from the often-flamboyant look of modern roses. I also love their vigor: several of my repeat bloomers—‘Souvenir de la Malmaison’, ‘Maggie’, ‘Monsieur Tillier’ and ‘Old Blush’—still bloom into December! I cut my old-fashioned roses for bouquets all summer, and make several batches of rose granita in the hottest months as a most refreshing dessert.

—Susan Poznar, Russellville, Arkansas

Thanks for sharing! Read more about the 2012 Herb of the Year in 2012 Herb of the Year: The Rose (Rose spp.). —Eds.


Oh, Crimini (Mushrooms)!

In your January 2012 article Plants for a Strong Immune System, it says that shiitake mushrooms are sometimes labeled as “baby portobellos.” Those are actually crimini mushrooms.

—Kate Foerster, Winona, Minnesota

In my local health-food store, baby portobellos are shiitakes, but when I looked it up on other grocery sites, I also found them listed as crimini mushrooms. So, yes, looking for “baby portobellos” on packaging is not a reliable way to shop for shiitakes. Criminis do have similar medicinal properties as well. —Jaclyn Chasse, author





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