Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Coltsfoot Blooming and Other Gardening Thoughts!

Coltsfoot in Bud and Bloom
Up until a few days ago, I wasn't familiar with this flower that is blooming in the back of our yard.  I then discovered a great post by one of my favorite blogs at The Cloisters in New York City, The Medieval Garden Enclosed called First Foot.   You may want to follow this blog or put it in your favorites to read when they post.  It has a lot of good information on Medieval gardens.  I want to get back to see them again.  They have such a beautiful series of gardens.  I did a post about them for Herb Companion called Herbal Travels:  The Cloisters when The Herbal Husband  and I did a week in New York.

Back to Coltsfoot (Tussilago farfara) gives a nod to dandelion in the shape of its flower, but much smaller in size.  The plant grows 3 to 18 inches tall.  "Tussis" in Latin means "cough".  People thought the juice of the plant cured coughs.  In New England they made candy sticks made with coltsfoot flavor to soothe coughs.  The name "coltsfoot" comes from the shape of the leaves which are shaped like hoofs.  The leaves come out after the blooms are finished and can be up to 18 inches across.  The leaves in the photo above are ground ivy!  It grows in damp, disturbed soil along roads and streams throughout Pennsylvania.  This information is from a book called Wildflowers of Pennsylvania by Mary Joy Haywood and Phyllis Testal Monk.  I took a photo of The Herbal Husband chomping on a piece of chive.  You know we are happy here when that happens!  Hope you are having a great day.  We are out trying to get seeds planted and plants in the herb garden trimmed back.  Yippee!  Talk to you later.  P.S. Take a guess what's coming back in the banner photo.
It's the Lovage Coming to Life!

3 comments:

Carla said...

Signs of life from the East! I am happy to see that your garden is coming back to life. You all on the East have certainly had enough of the cold winter for sometime to come. Thanks for the link to the blog, I am going to add it to my blogroll.

lemonverbenalady said...

Hi Carla, Yes, it's a happy time for us. Although we are going to have a dip in temps briefly this weekend. I think you will enjoy the Medieval Garden Enclosed. Thanks for stopping by. xo

Sharon said...

I first saw Coltsfoot in West Virginia. It grows wild on the roadsides in the spring.