The cooling nights reminds us it’s time to get the last of our harvest in or move those sun-loving planters inside soon.

Many get so excited to plant in spring, but autumn is a great time to plant perennials, giving the plants an opportunity to get roots firmly grounded before having to express energy in the spring for leaves, flowers and fruit.

Autumn is also a great time of year to reflect on the year’s accomplishments and visualize those things undone being finished.  The cooling temperatures give us time to finish the year’s projects that have been lingering.

If you are walking in the woods now, look for fruits and seeds that you may scatter to help proliferate the species of various forest plants. We like to throw a handful in the four directions in the same environment that the plant is already growing. You can be your own Johnny Appleseed wherever you may be, distributing herbs like American spikenard – Aralia racemosa -- found in Appalachia.

Another fun thing to do is seed save from your herb garden and organize a seed swap with friends in winter or early spring. We are so fortunate to have a partnership with The Lord’s Acre, a produce garden feeding families in Fairview, NC. Jacquelyn Dobrinska and other volunteers have created TLA herb garden, chock full of beneficial plants. Red Moon Herbs has been harvesting and seed saving from this plot and will coordinate a seed exchange in the near future, including herbs like toothache plant, Spilanthes acmella, and tulsi or holy basil, Ocimum sanctum.

We are also busily preparing some locally grown and dried herbs for the upcoming SE Wise Women Herb Conference on October 10-12, 2014. It’s a great time of year to collect some of you favorite herbs such as mint, lemon balm, tulsi, dandelion leaf, plantain and others from the garden or in pristine wildcrafted places. Hang in bouquets upside down with string to dry for your own tea blends to savor mid-winter.

September 24, 2014 — Jeannie Dunn

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