Mother Earth Living

Herbal Travels: VanDusen Botanical Garden in Vancouver

You can check out the Lemon Verbena Lady at her blog

I honestly did not remember the herb garden at VanDusen Botanical Garden. Last time I was there I was under the weather, suffering from infected ears and a sinus infection. This time was much more pleasant, although a bit rainy! Some herbs were growing like weeds and some herbs were barely growing! 

One of my favorite herbs, salad burnet (Poterium sangisorba), was blooming away. I love salad burnet because it is highly ornamental in the herb garden and is one of the herbs that is evergreen through winter. I wrote about it in an Herb Companion post called Spring Cleaning in the Garden. It has a mild cucumber flavor, which is great when cucumbers do not agree with your system! I found a very easy recipe in a favorite book of mine by Phyllis Shaudys and it is called Burnet Chives Garlic Vinegar from a post I did last summer on Lemon Verbena Lady’s Herb Garden. The chives (Allium schoenoprasum) were just about to bloom as well and have a delicious edible flower. You can find a lot of information on three different chives in my post called Spring Favorites: The Good, the Bad and the Curly Chives.

These two herbs are very hardy in the Canadian Pacific Northwest, rosemary (Rosmarinusofficinalis) and sweet marjoram (Origanum majorana). Not so for herb gardeners in southwestern Pennsylvania. I could have very easily been Rosemary Lady’s Herb Garden instead of Lemon Verbena Lady’s Herb Garden. It is a very favorite herb of mine. When we travel, I love to take photos of rosemaries all over the world like the one I found in Peru. I am so jealous of herb gardeners who can grow rosemaries as big as small cars or just bigger than a small container size. Sweet marjoram is called pot marjoram in Canada. Maybe it is called by that name where you live. I would urge you to learn your botanical names. Because as long as it is tagged correctly, you will always have the right plant.

I really use marjoram like oregano and it has a much milder flavor. Not as intense.

I was excited to see that my curry plant in my garden has returned while the curry plant (Helichrysum italicum) in the VanDusen herb garden is a bunch of herbal sticks. If they are at all fragrant, use them in your fireplace. When I prune the lavenders or sages, I keep a plastic bag hardy and they are used in my fireplace as a herbal fire enhancer.

Photos by Nancy Heraud

I hope what you see in the VanDusen herb garden is that it is a small space and you do not have to have a huge space to have an herb garden. I have posted several more posts on our Canadian trip at Lemon Verbena Lady’s Herb Garden.  As usual, if you have any comments or you want to e-mail me directly, you can do so at Talk to you soon.

  • Published on Jun 5, 2011
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