Chamomile flowers for tea

This year I decided to put more effort in my part of the garden and sowed a few different easy to grow plants in a mini greenhouse in early March. One of the plants that survived is the chamomile. I am pleased that I was able to harvest these beautiful and fragrant small flowers. I pick the flowers before the full heat of the noon sun. Since I only have one pot, I harvested several times allowing more blooms to grow. I used a 2-step drying process since I don’t have much room, a small harvest and pick the flowers at different times.

Step 1: Paper napkins secured on both ends to hold the fresh chamomile blooms.

Step 2: I transfer the dried flowers after a couple of weeks to a paper bag.This will allow the blooms to dry more. I reuse the paper napkin for the next batch of blooms to dry.











I may only have enough for a cup or two of chamomile tea but it is nice to know that it came from my garden, and that is good in my books!



Balcony Mystery Squash

Mystery squash
A mystery squash started growing in my balcony amongst my geraniums! It was a nice surprise when I found that there was a foot tall squash plant growing amongst the red geraniums. I did not even notice this plant growing with the densely potted container. Instead of pulling it out, I kept it to see how far it will grow. As shown in these pictures, it  grew quickly. We figured it may be a zucchini plant since we used compost soil to this container. It was exciting to see it grew so quickly. I quick research and I learned that are both male and female blooms from the same plant. Usually the bees do the job of polinating but this one needed a helping hand, it was hand-pollinated. I also found that you can eat the squash blooms. We we cooked it  two ways, one was pan-fried battered squash blooms and the other was with an omelet.

You can see from the picture the progression from a bloom to about 14″ in circumference. I’m still not sure what type of squash this is but my guess is a Kabocha squash. What do you think?

How’s this for vegetable gardening in the city? Mystery squash plant