Summer Beverage Plants (and a Big Thank You)

Sage Flowers

Fresh sage blossoms are a tasty garnish in savoury, tomato-based beverages.

Fortunately, it feels like my toothy saga is nearing the finish line. After a few consultations, I opted for an extraction of the offending tooth. It had a significant crack, and due to an experience Davin had some years ago and the options presented to me by a professional, I decided this was the best way to go. The procedure was scheduled for next week, but I was fortunate to get in yesterday morning. I’m in recovery. There’s still a lot of pain, but I’m following the post-operative procedures and everything should be back to normal soon. Fingers crossed. Isn’t it funny how something so small can be so painful and disruptive? Pain and whining aside, I feel lucky that this health scare was nothing more than a lousy rotten tooth.

I wanted to write and thank you for your support. Some of you got in touch to share stories of your dental procedures and those of you who wrote about extractions made it sound quick and easy. While my tooth did not seem quite as willing to come out of its socket, my nerves going into the procedure were somewhat calmed by your optimistic stories.

To those of you who purchased a copy of Drinking the Summer Garden: thank you. I hope it inspires you to try a few new edibles this year, or offers up interesting ways to use edibles that you are already growing. Don’t hesitate to email with questions. It can sometimes take me a while to answer, but I do try to answer everyone.

I know that many of you in the Eastern United States are living through yet another big storm. I’ve dug up a few summer images to lift your spirits.

Saving Coriander Seed
One way that I save coriander seed from the garden. It’s really tasty when infused into vodka. Many people use this as a bitter to flavour mixed drinks.

Purple Perilla aka Shiso
Perilla makes a tangy and refreshing summer iced-tea beverage. This is my patch in the garden. The plant tends to go downhill once the flowers turn to seed so I try to harvest before that point. I also try to catch it then because once it sets seed you will find seedlings all over your garden through to forever and a day. It is a very persistent self-seeder!

Rose Petals in Sugar
Rose petals from the garden in a bowl with sugar, preparing to be made into syrup. I macerate the roses in the sugar for some time in order to extract as much flavour as possible.

Chocolate Mint
‘Chocolate Mint’ growing in my garden. Despite there rampant nature, I grow a few of my favourite mint varieties in the ground to ensure there is A LOT to go dry and preserve. I drink mint tea all winter long.

If you haven’t seen it, my version of homemade Crème de Menthe (an out-take that didn’t make it into the book) is offered as a free, printable download here. It’s another great way to use up all of the excess, end-of-the-season mint that most of us have.

I’ll keep the sale going until Monday. SALE $6.99 eBook Bundle

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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8 thoughts on “Summer Beverage Plants (and a Big Thank You)

  1. I have been following your “tooth saga” and I am so glad to hear that full recovery is near. Hope it makes you feel better to hear that your books have been having a lot of use lately while I have been planning for yet another growing season in my mini-backyard. Sending healing thoughts your way!

  2. I’m so happy to read this update, Gayla. I hope your healing is quick with minimal discomfort, if not pain-free. I’m sure Nurse Molly’s TLC will hasten recovery.

    Thank you for offering your e-book as a way to support you through this dental emergency. But I hope you never have to do this again :).

    I’m looking forward to trying some very new-to-me ways of using the garden harvest.

  3. I do hope the tooth/gap is completely better soon. Thanks for the summer photos, just what I needed to see on this cold wet day.

  4. That perilla/shiso is beautiful! Is it the normal purple variety, or a rarer-kind? If it’s rare I’d love to hear where you got the seeds :)

    • I’m sorry, I was sure I responded to this! I don’t know which variety it is specifically as I can’t recall which seed these were started from…. and the seed I have isn’t well identified regardless.

  5. friday one of my friends had a very painful toothach, and had been in bed for three days. he look like he was about to pass out from the pain…………then here i appeared with a bag of garlic that i intended to plant. i offered him a peeled one, he mashed it and place it on the spot where he felt the pain. Then went to bed. in five minutes the pain started to get less intense. he evenutally fell a sleep. today i saw him with a big smile. no pain and he is able to eat. his dentist can see him on thursday. This garlic worked for me, but i did not have severe pain like he did. i found that infomation about using raw garlic some years ago on a natural healing website. AND IT WORKS! until a visit to the dentist.
    my favorite summer drink is lemongrass lemonade, and anise/lemonade

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