Category Archives: Edible Flowers

Vegan cookbooks and Websites

i recently had a conversation with a friend about about easy Vegan eating.

I was inspired to look,at my cookbook shelves and memory. What books did I like and recommend and any other info( websites).

Long before I went vegan I read Dr Dean Ornish’s books and started experimenting with his heart healthy plant based recipes.

Later when I wa struggling with some pain and inflammation issues I learned of the evil of dairy as a food source and a few books helped with that 1st step to vegetarian diet.

Books I have and like:

Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook Hardcover – 2007

by Isa Chandra Moskowitz , Terry Hope Romero
Love this one. Lots of great recipes and tons of ideas to get creative with. Plus Isa Chandra Moskowitz has other great books and lots of web presence.
1,000 Vegan Recipes (1,000 Recipes 2009

by Robin Robertson

Another great one. Can get OCD ( I did) and start working through the book…. Also has. A newer book…100 BEST VEGAN RECIPES
Forks Over Knives – The Cookbook: Over 300 Recipes for Plant-Based Eating All Through the Year 2012

by Del Sroufe

The first book, FORKS OVER KNIVES has great info but this is all food. There is a great video/ documentary available,online.
Becoming Vegetarian: The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Vegetarian Diet 2003. by Vesanto Melina , Brenda Davis 
Great getting started book, my first in this current situation. Was what I used to learn to be dairy free, and later carried it to the next step.

Becoming Vegan, Express Edition: The Everyday Guide to Plant-based Nutrition Paperback –2013

by Vesanto Melina , Brenda Davis

My (obvious ) 2nd book after the previous. Read and studied before I switched.

Have not read but seems interesting with good reviews.
PETA’S Vegan College Cookbook: 275 Easy, Cheap, and Delicious Recipes to Keep You Vegan at School 2016.     

But I Could Never Go Vegan!: 125 Recipes That Prove You Can Live Without Cheese, It’s Not All Rabbit Food, and Your Friends Will Still Come Over for Dinner 2014

By Kristy Turner

Very interesting topic and also,comes with good reviews.
The Oh She Glows Cookbook: Over 100 Vegan Recipes to Glow from the Inside Out 2014

by Angela Liddon

Another interesting book with lots of great reviews.
INTERESTING WEBSITES:   Lots of great fun, info and recipes.     Happy Healthy Life is a lot of fun and full of info.     Lots of basic cooking info as well as recipes and Nava Atlas has some good,books as well.


Sprouts- ‘Baby’ Food that is Easy to grow and Get Healthy With.

I have experimented with packets of sprouting seeds and a few days of twice daily rinses and watching the taisl pop out and then the baby leaves and then DIGGING in.

   ***  HOW TO Grow sprouts for Healthy Food and Life

Alfalfa Sprouts– (procedure similar for others)

Gardens Growing, Farmers Markets Open- SALAD SEASON !!

It is spring and the GREENS are popping up all the way TO THE MARKET. What we aren’t growing yet we can get in bundles.

I love the amount greens available- seems like THEY KEEP INVENTING  new greens- …and some of the best are the 1st vision of great beets or turnips or parsnips. I love snipping some tops from beets and turnips as I collect lettuces and other early greens

-Cabbage is close and asparagus will be here soon


+++Spring Focused- get creative with THE MARKET and garden

* ADD some nuts and poms…

** sub strawberries at Farmers Market for Poms…

### This just looked and sounded great


Beautiful Deer -Unwelcome Visitors in The Garden

Deer are beautiful creatures and they roam freely throughout the USA and they can be challenging co-habitants of our gardens. They love to eat our greenery and fruits and generally wreak havoc in gardens and landscapes. BUT the buffet can be limited. 

FIRST THINGS FIRST-Unless you plan on building a FORTRESS of Solitude, Accept some losses and share with our fuzzy friends.


Young deer- looking for food?

Now that you accepted that premise what can you do to the  limit losses?

There are 3 basics- Barriers, Repellents,  and Scare tactics.

1. One option is to use less “tasty” plants in the garden BUT since many of the deer faves are also ours we need to plant to block their lunch.  

Barriers –   A.  Plant large, sprawling deer repellent varieties such as thick hedges of boxwoods or short needle spruces around the borders of your garden.

B. Plant hairy or thorny plants on the perimeter and near crops you want to protect. Plants like fuzzy lamb’s ear, barberries, and cleome are a good place to start. One perimeter location to focus on is any entrance spot. Though roses are a favored snack- some roses are particularly thorny, built for self-defense and are an attractive fence.


Jumping a Low fence

C. The obvious barrier option is to install a fence at least 6 feet high but since deer are capable jumpers a fence of 7-9 feet would be useful.

Repellents – 1. The first step is to plant strongly scented herbs—garlic, chives, mint and lavender (left)—can mask the appealing aroma of nearby snacks.  Many of these are also useful in the garden to prevent many insects. AND they are delicious and useful crops.

 2. There are some specific repellents to make and use that include

*fabric softener strips and/or wrapped bars of soap from trees

*hot pepper sprays 

*garlic and rotten egg mixtures

*ammonia soaked rags

*bags of hair ( or spread on the ground)  {call your barber/hairdresser} 

*blood meal
Most these are applied as a spray and should be covered from the ground and up the plants and around the perimeter. Most of these are water soluble and should be reapplied after rainfall. It may also be a good idea to rotate the sprays so the deer don’t develop a tolerance to the irritants.  Many of these are available in commercially packaged formulas. 

Most of these are water soluble and should be reapplied after rainfall. It may also be a good idea to rotate the sprays so the deer don’t develop a tolerance to the irritants.


Still healthy without Your smorgasbord.


Herbal Tea- Right in Your Garden

Herbal Tea- Right in Your Garden

I love growing food and flowers. The fun of watching the seeds break the soil and and reach for the sun.

I also enjoy starting the seeds and plants and having some “babies” to take to and plant in the garden. The other joy I have is the early season Farmers market and buying some 4-6 packs of seedlings for the garden.  

With all this planting and growing I often end up with too many plants- Now CAN YOU EVER HAVE TOO MANY?

But this is really helpful when planting-growing herbs- These tend be quite attractive plants and many have useful insect resistant and fighting properties, and thus useful when mixed in with veggies and fruit crops.

All of these extra herbs can be used for a variety of teas (after culinary uses have been exhausted).

My favorites have been the Mints- they grow easily and energetically and much more than I use in kitchen.


  – herb gardening Basics 

  – More How-to



Stinging Nettles and Milk Thistle – Weeds or Wonders

>Planting and growing “weeds” is a lot of fun and beneficial. In the past I have grown dandelions and they are great in salads, soups and smoothies. Tasty and full of vitamins/minerals.           Image

This year I am growing Stinging nettles and Milk Thistle.  I love a plant that can fight back when harvested- like going hunting. I also enjoy the challenge of creating and attractive garden, that is a joy to visit and walk by.  The color and spread of the nettles and the variegated coloring of the thistle leaves and the beautiful purple flowers. AND the thorns.

Besides the taste and fun in the garden- these cool plants have the following benefits.

Stinging Nettle – leaves/roots – Vitamin:A,B,D,C,K; Iron,calcium and silica{ Urtica dioica }

Helpful/useful for:

-Urinary tract Infections                        – Kidney stones

-Joint ailments and arthritis                  -allergies

– general inflammation                          -internal bleeding

-all kinds of ..itis issues                          -many other indications……

How to Consume:  Cooked greens, tea , smoothies, leaves and stems as a topical skin treatment


Milk Thistle –leaves, blooms,stems and seeds, high anti-oxidants,bioflavonoids     {silybum marianum}

Helpful / Useful for:

-Liver and gallbladder concerns            -appetite and heartburn

-allergy concerns                                     -hangover

– diabetes issues                                      – alcohol abuse symptoms

How to consume- Leaves and flowers cooked or in salads or smoothies, seeds as a coffees sub.



The new plants are coming in slowly but look great and I will add some more pictures as they mature and I have more starting for late season harvest.

I became enamored of these greens a few years ago when I got “hooked” on green smoothies. I was able to purchase dandelion greens at the store but had to cut and harvest these in the wild or from the “weedy” section of gardens at other homes. Many of them looked at me funny when I planted seeds for these tasty greens as well as dandelions.

More to come.