I've spent most of my free time this week studying. I've been spending a lot of time with this book:
In my experience the guides published by DK are the best around, particularly their travel guides which cost much more than their competitors but are so much better, particularly for places where you don't speak the language. (They show pictures of everything, including the most commonly served dishes, which is incredibly helpful).
Anyway, back to herbs. Saturday is our master gardeners' annual heirloom plant and herb sale, which might be better described as a three-hour dash for plants. We sell about 11,000 heirloom vegetables, herbs, heirloom roses and "passalong" plants dug from members' gardens, from 9 a.m. to noon. People line up before 7 a.m. to get in with the first wave (it resembles the dash into Wal-Mart on Black Friday). For a glimpse of the set-up scene last year click here.
This year I'm a "table captain" at a table where we sell a lot of herbs that don't easily fit into other categories. And while I love growing herbs, I'm no herb expert, so I've been researching some of the plants that are sold on my table so I can answer people's questions. You can download a list of the plants we're selling here.
The sale itself is quite a production, and after a group of volunteers sets up tables today, I'll report to the university gym where we hold it tomorrow at 7 a.m. to start unloading all the plants. Saturday will be the same time. (I'm not sure what forces in nature or caffeine will allow me to wake up at 5:30 a.m. two days in a row, but we'll find out.)
If you're in southeast Wisconsin, don't miss the sale on Saturday. If you're not, think about picking up that book ... it's a great guide.