Northern California Coastal & Inland Valleys
Garden writer and photographer Cheryl Richter has launched a new project called Free Trees and Plants.com. Every year millions of healthy, high-quality plants go unsold and are destroyed. They come from the very same growers that supply many of the most famous garden catalogs. Richter's industry contacts alert her about large numbers of plants that are scheduled for destruction, and she obtains the plants at little or no cost and features them on her Web site. She then works with organizations that provide employment for disabled workers to process and package the plants for shipment. A nominal fee of $6.95 covers shipping and processing. Quantities are limited, but new selections are frequently added. Check out the site for some great deals.
The New Age Herbalist
The New Age Herbalist, by Richard Maybe (Fireside, 1988; $22) is the reference book I use whenever I want to find a cure for itchy feet (garlic and chamomile), insomnia (chamomile), or sunburn (aloe vera). It contains color photos, recipes, and cultivation tips for herbs used in healing, nutrition, body care, and relaxation. The book contains interesting history of the various herbs and how they were used to make dyes and insect repellants. If you are interested in the medicinal qualities of herbs, this is the book for you.