Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Cold-weather aphid

In all the cold weather, most of my garden has shrivelled and shrunk. The nasturtiums are a smear in the mud, the hydrangea rattles pale brown heads in the wind. Only the alyssum still blooms, draped over the wall, scorning the rain that tries to grind it into the cement.

And the invasive (but still tolerated for its scented leaves) lemon balm, cut down to the ground a month ago, has sprouted new leafy stalks. I cut them down again and brought a handful in to make tea. But they turned out to be a home for aphids, and the whole kit and kaboodle ended up in a glass of water, growing under my window.*

Lemon balm leaves and aphid, on my kitchen counter

The plant is used to attract bees to make honey. It is also grown and sold as an ornamental plant. The essential oil is used as a perfume ingredient, but the plant has other culinary and medicinal uses. Lemon balm is used in some toothpastes. ... as a flavouring in ice cream and herbal teas, both hot and iced, often in combination with other herbs such as spearmint. It is ... also paired with fruit dishes or candies. Additionally, it can be used in fish dishes and is the main ingredient in lemon balm pesto. (From Wikipedia)

*I am too soft-hearted for my own good, sometimes.

And tonight, the evergreens are all glittering with new frost. Proper winter weather, finally!

1 comment:

  1. You are very soft-hearted. Aphids do so much damage in my garden that I go after them with a vengeance. - Margy


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