Monday, June 11, 2012

Lemon basil surprise

Lemon basil thriving in a sea of grass and weeds

Lemon basil and mint

Our yard was overgrown with mint when we bought the house. We mow/weed whack a lot of it back and just let two clumps grow - one right by the front door and one in the back yard. I actually had a garden near the backyard patch the first summer we owned the house. Despite being in the field for most of the summer, many of the herbs, carrots, and even the tomatoes did surprisingly well. I became disturbed though about a gooey grey substance that was in the soil in this part of the yard. It is a small somewhat raised area that certainly looks like someone had used it as a garden before. They grey substance was weird though and it made me think twice about growing food there. I think the most likely explanation is that is is little chunks of sheet rock. Is that what I really want to grow food in? Probably not. I haven't grown anything in there since then. This area gets totally overgrown with weeds, grass, and blackberries and we weed whack it a couple of times a year.

Yesterday I decided to pick a couple leaves of mint while I was out in the back yard, just to smell. I noticed one patch which was brighter than the rest of the mint, and after I smelled it, I realized why: it wasn't mint. It was some lemon basil I planted three years ago and haven't even looked at since. I had no idea it was thriving back there. Now to start using it!

You might ask why the fact that it's growing in sheet rock doesn't bother me now...I guess it's just because I'm eating the part that grows above ground, unlike a carrot. And I just think it's really cool that this herb has taken off even though we attempt to kill everything that grows in there twice a year.

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