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Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Favorite Plants?
Posted: 01 May 2006 09:28 PM
We've had an unusually warm and early spring with plants sprouting up as early as March!

I thought this would be a good time to ask the other gardeners what their favorite plants.
mel is not online. Last active: 10/2/2013 7:44:01 AM mel
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 02 May 2006 09:55 AM
Hey Tabby,

I have to tell you that I am not much of a gardener. In fact, I am not a very good one at all but I really love a nice garden. I adore snapdragons and forget-me-nots. Gladiolas are old favs too :-)

~mel~
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 02 May 2006 12:10 PM
I'm not a great gardener either.Smiley We bought a house and the former owners were super gardeners. I've managed to kill or maim quite a few of their plants, including an azalea and a rhodedendron, which we're going to yank this year.

I am quite proud that most of the perennials I put in last June have come back. But I try to stick with plants that are easy and hardy.

I did glads for the first time last year too and I loved them. I'm going to do them again this year, but my bulbs haven't shown up yet (the ones I used last year got left outside all winter so they are kaput now).
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 09:44 AM
Hi! I like plants that smell nice and have a strong will to live. They include rugosa roses that smell great and are not fussy. Also perennials like dianthus that reseed, carnations of the small perennial type, pansies because they are cute and cheerful, columbines because I live in Colorado[it's the state flower], and forget me nots for the pretty blue color. Blue flax is also pretty fot its blueness. Petunias are part of our summer scene here as well.

How about you?
mel is not online. Last active: 10/2/2013 7:44:01 AM mel
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 10:02 AM
Hi Valli,

I love forget me nots also. I love the blue color but I also love how they were given by sweethearts and loved ones to each other for rememberance when they had to part. I can not look at one without being a total romantic!

~mel~
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 10:56 AM
Mel,

That is romantic.

I know this is gardening, but have you read any higher quality romance/history by Rosemunde Pilcher like COMING HOME? It's centered in Scotland around WW 2.

Valli
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 10:59 AM
P.S. I want to add that a tip I learned over the years is that the leaves are important too. They last while the flowers go. So if you can get pleasing combinations in the leaves, you have something nice to look at longer.
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 05:23 PM
Hi Valli,

It's funny that you mention columbines because my husband and I were discussing these today. At some point, they were planted in our yard, but I've never actually seen them in our flower beds. However, we find them in the oddest places: in our organic junk pile (we throw branches and weeds between our garage and shed until we can get rid of them), coming up between large rocks etc. Same for Johnny Jump Ups; we have this where no other plant will grow due to runoff from our roof.

I had some sort of dianthus last summer (Chive Pinks was it's common name, I think), but it didn't make it through the winter. We didn't have much snow, so a lot of stuff just wasn't insulated enough to make it through.

I think the hardiest plants I've had are Daylillies, Sedums, and Monarda (Bee Balm). I just transplanted a ton of Daylillies "Stella D'Oro" and they showed no signs of transplant shock. Monarda looks like fireworks going off when it blooms, but it's heavily invasive and can cause skin issues (I brushed up against it last summer and ended up with nasty, painful boils for the rest of the day.
mel is not online. Last active: 10/2/2013 7:44:01 AM mel
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 07 May 2006 08:02 PM
Hi Valli and Tabby,

Valli, I have not read Rosemunde Pilcher yet but I have seen her around the bookstore. I love historical novels so now that you have recommended her, I will definitely put her on my "to-read" list!

Tabby, Monarda sounds stunning but the boils sound painful. I think I will have to skip that one. You seem to be a much more accomplished gardner then me! I am lucky if I can get anything to live!

~mel~
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 08 May 2006 10:02 AM
Hi,

You know, I'm the only one I've ever heard of having any skin issues with Monarda. I had to look and hard on the internet to even find any proof that it can cause skin issues. But that's one of my mother-in-law's favorite plants.

Heehee, I'm not that good. I kill a lot of stuff or it just doesn't return the next year. But I tend to just pull things out and start over. Or with annuals, if I'm not impressed with it, that's the end of it for me. This is why I won't grow petunias or calla lillies anymore.
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 08 May 2006 11:18 AM
Hi Tabby,

Yes, the columbines have a strong will to live and they are very pretty in bloom-kind of airy. The purples and yellows are my favorites. Hope you get a few in flower this year.

I love that the daylilies are hardy as well. I hope you have a happy garden this summer.

Have you planted any herbs? Or strawberries?

Valli
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 08 May 2006 11:20 AM
Hi Mel,

It's long but a great read.

How about petunias or geraniums in pots at the front door?

Valli

Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 08 May 2006 03:25 PM
Hi Valli,

The columbines we have are red with a yellow trim, sort of. Because they are sort of wild (they just show up and we don't really take care of them at all), they don't bloom as nicely as the ones I've seen in nurseries. But they are airy, like you said, and delicate, but hardy, so that's probably why they are so popular.

Thanks for the garden well-wishes! I hope your garden does well this year too.

My husband is the herb and produce guy at our house. He actually created an herb garden this year with a bird bath in the center and big pavers around it. He's got chives, dill, fennel, oregano, basil, English lavender, sage...I'm probably missing some in there.

Before this spot became the herb garden, it was the fruit garden last year. We put in a currant and blueberry bush; something ate the blueberry bush right away, so we replaced it with a raspberry bush. We had both raspberries and currants like mad last year. My husband also put a ton of strawberry plants in, but I think my husband killed them. Grass kept growing into the fruit garden, so instead of just yanking out the grass, he sprayed some sort of pesticide on it. Well, that's when the strawberries started to wither. Our raspberry bush didn't make it through the winter either, so my husband is going to replace that, but he's not willing to try strawberries again. He also has two different types of cherry trees that he's going to plant soon too.

Geraniums, I think, are pretty easy plants and they'd look great near a front door. I've done impatiens on our front steps and they've worked wonderfully. You need a really shady spot for impatients or they'll get sulky and either die or not bloom.
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 09 May 2006 10:19 AM
Hi Tabby,

That herb garden idea sounds great. Very picturesque.

We sure live and learn with our plants, huh?

One problem I have with gardening is the frustration I feel of not being able to in hardly any way keep up with the way I want it. I know it's a perfection, let go of it and enjoy thing, but it is part of the picture. So there are two gardens: one in my mind and one on the ground, and occasionally they meet.

Best wishes,
Valli
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 09 May 2006 04:27 PM
Hey Valli,

I know what you mean. I have chronic medical problems, so there's what I want to do and what I can do. It's exactly like you said "one in my mind and one on the ground, and occasionally they meet".

:)
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 11 May 2006 11:39 AM
Hi Tabby,

Do you mind sharing your medical problems? Only reason, and I don't intend to be a fanatic, have you tried any alternative medicine? You can answer how you like, if I have gone over the edge.

Anyway, thank God for the beauty of the flowers and spring.

Best wishes,
Valli
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 11 May 2006 05:05 PM
Hey Valli,

I have fibromyalgia along with Reynaud's Phenomenon and the early beginnings of arthritis in both knees.

I've done accupuncture in the past, but I'm currently not participating in any alt medical care. I don't mind you asking at all.

Preliminary medical studies show that fibromyalgia is genetic and is a central nervous system disorder. Among other things, many chemical levels are off in the brain, blood flow is often lowered to the brain, and growth hormone is not produced during physical activity (when you exercise or engage in physical activities, your body produces growth hormone, which helps to heal minor damage to muscles that occurs naturally).

It's somewhat related to chronic fatigue syndrome (I don't even think this is correct term to use anymore, so please correct me if you know it offhand) and both are involved in Persian Gulf Syndrome.

Both CFS and fibro patients face a lot of discrimination and nastiness from not only the general public, but also medical professionals. It took me a year-and-a-half to be diagnosed because many medical professionals don't keep up with current research and often times out of arrogance, just pick and choose what they think exists and doesn't. My general physician actually refused to return phone calls, so I had to go to my OB/GYN (who is a nurse practitioner), who refered me to a rheumatologist. He diagnosed me and said that someone should have picked up on it a long time ago because it was "a classical case".

I've gotten the best results working with nurses, occupational therapists (my mom!), and physical therapists.
dollmommy is not online. Last active: 10/30/2007 8:18:24 AM dollmommy
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 12 May 2006 07:16 AM
Hi Tabby,

I am sorry to hear about your condition. I know two people with fibromyalgia and lagree with you that this is often mis/undiagnosed and, even worse, sometimes patients are told that they are hypochondriacs. Have you considered a neurologist? How about herbal additives? I forgot which ones but a health food store can direct you to the proper herbs and essences. I am a firm eliever in mixing medicinal with herbal treatments for many things.
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 12 May 2006 09:18 AM
Hey Dee,

Thanks for your kind words - I appreciate it.Smiley But yeah, I kept getting told I was depressed or had psychiatric problems, which made me so mad. I knew I was depressed, but I also knew that was from being so isolated from the world and being sick and not being able to fix it.

I saw 2 neurologists and I give them both thumbs down. Neurologists as a whole are refusing as a national body to really have anything to do with fibro patients. You may find some here or there, but the only doctors as a whole who have agreed to treat fibro patients are the rheumatologists and they've only agreed to diagnose, not treat. The one neurologist told me she didn't know what was wrong, but I needed leg braces (at one point, I was so stiff and sore, my gait was really off and I couldn't walk well); wrong, it improved within 2 weeks with just some occupational therapy exercises my mom uses with her geriatic clients. The other one told me if I just took an anti-depressant, I'd be fine; that deteriorated into a screaming match (I wish I would have made him cry, but oh well).

Not that I disagree with herbal stuff, but you have to be careful with it. There's no governing body that controls those, so you could be ending up with who knows what in them. My treating health care professional (I'm treated by a nurse practitioner and an RN who specialize in fibro) told me to take 5HTP, which is some sort of herbal thing, to control my PMS, but it's done nothing, so I quit it.

I also take something that was developed for heart patients at the U of MN. I mix it in with my milk twice a day and it works at the cellular level to increase energy at the cellular level. It's worked well for me, so that I don't have fatigue so horrible, I feel like I have a bad case of the flu.

Otherwise, I take a sleep med (not ambien, I tried it and it did nothing for me) and two different muscle relaxants, which for some reason, helps with any sort of flare-ups (must do something in the brain).
mel is not online. Last active: 10/2/2013 7:44:01 AM mel
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 12 May 2006 10:50 AM
Hi Everyone,

Tabby, I can not imagine what you have gone through. I hope that you will find something that makes a difference for you.

One thing I want to point out and I believe this is true for all women's health, not just fibro, etc. is that women are often misdiagnosed. If you are packing around any extra weight at all, that is the first thing many doctors tend to go after. Weight and depression in women are the big catch all that is used repeatedly. It is very easy to fall into a trap and say "Nasty Doctors!" but the truth of the matter is, there are real dangers with weight and depression. Some are emotional but there is also a physical side to them. Excessive weight really can cause so many physical illnesses and pain, not to mention just make you extremely tired. Depression can do the same and sometimes that fatigue from depression/weight can make you actually be unable to move. I can attest to this as I have several women in my family who are so obese that they literally can not move most days. This lethargy started before they were obese, when they were just a little overweight and that is how it started. Two of the women never had health problems in their life beyond regular colds, etc. until they got more and more overweight. Now both have all kinds of issues including insulin dependent diabetes.

I just wanted to point out that alot of doctors do have reasons for pointing at weight or depression because they are real medical concerns BUT at the same time, we also have to be careful not to fall into this trap as a catch all. Thanks for sharing Tabby. It is very important the women realize that genuine medical conditions can be overlooked because of the tendency to lean towards weight and depression as the culprit.

~mel~
mel is not online. Last active: 10/2/2013 7:44:01 AM mel
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 12 May 2006 11:15 AM
One more thing I forgot to add is that I believe in natural herbal remedies but I also believe in caution when using them. As Tabby pointed out they are not regulated. I realize that there are risks involved when you take any medication but two that often are associated with herbal and natural medications are:

1. Non-regulated ingredients
AND
2. Interactions/Side effects not widely known or studied

I can actually tell a personal story about the non-regulated ingredient risk. We have always used natural/ayurvedic treatments in addition to our medical care received at our doctor's office. When my son was about 6 we gave him an herbal treatment for his stomach upset that we had given him many times before. It was the same brand name we had always used in the past. He had an allergic reaction to it so badly that we had to take him to the hospital and they had to treat him for swollen air passages. In short, he could have died. We know it was related to the herbal treatment we gave him because it started almost instantly after he had swallowed it and progresse to the point he was in distress. The ingredients listed on the box were the same as always, things he had taken before and still does with no problem. The issue was that because the manufacturing of these items were not regulated, something was added in that was not documented and he had a bad reaction it. To this day, we do not know what it was.

As for the interaction/side effects, people do need to realize that even though something is natural it can still cause interactions with other medications and have side effects. Since natural medications and treatments have not been studied in depth often, these interactions and side effects are not always known. A good case in point is the St. John's Wart that was the hot new natural treatment in this country a few years back. It is a herbal medication that increases your sense of well being and peace. It was being widely used by many, many people as a mild and natural anti-depressant. I have even heard of several doctors who recommended it to their patients. One of the things said by it was that people had used it in many different countries around the world for a long time but it was just catching on here in the USA. People felt it was safe because 1. It was all natural and 2. because people had used it for many years in other countries which most people believe made it safe since if there was anything wrong with it, those countries would have figured it out by now. The problem came with the fact that no one realized it was a blood thinner and it took several deaths and near deaths before people realized that. Now, alot of doctors will ask what you are taking and they want to know if you are taking anything natural.

It is important that you consult your physcian before taking any new medication or starting any new treatment, even natural/ayurvedic ones and that you tell everything you are taking when you see your doctor, even the occasional tylenol and over the counter products.

~mel~
Tabby is not online. Last active: 7/28/2008 10:19:17 AM Tabby
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 12 May 2006 04:43 PM
Hey Mel,

You put that much better than I did!

Another I had originally wanted to point out, but forgot in my original post, is that some regular medications that we do not think of as natural originally came from natural sources. For example, aspirin originally came from willow bark, there's a terrific medication for controlling type 2 diabetes that is a synthetic version of some substances in Gila Monster saliva, and the birth control pill contains a synthetic form of a substance found in yams growing in the Yucatan pennisula.

Another thing that is important to note is that some natural meds aren't being used in the right form. For example, the Chinese may use a certain herb to alieviate a certain medical issue by drinking that herb in tea form. However, people may be taking it in capsule form in the West which either may not work at all or cause side effects that are unknown when steeped in a tea.

Speaking of St. John's Wort, about 5 years ago or so, I was having a rough patch and thought about taking it. Luckily, I read the bottle before buying it and it mentioned that St. John's Wort can interfere with the effectiveness of many drugs, including birth control pills.

And I cannot stress how important it is to list out exactly what you are taking to your health care professional. Vitamins, OTC pain relievers etc. - you never know these can affect other medications.
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 13 May 2006 10:33 AM
Hi Tabby,

I'm glad you shared your situation. It is informative plus people should be able to talk, don't you think?

I hope your health will be better and that there will be breakthroughs. I will keep my ears open about fibromyalgia and share accordingly.

Interesting that the nurses, etc. are your best support. I am glad you have support! It is so crazy and roundabout we often have to travel to find health answers and help!! And how much we often have to use our own judgement to sort out the experiences!!

There is a Dr. Naram who has a clinic in India who is in the U.S. this month. He is very highly recommended by people from here who have used him. I know of a lady with rheumatoid[sp?] arthritis who benefited greatly. You probably could do a search and find him or I can ask my friend. [or not]

Anyway, best wishes.

Valli
valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 13 May 2006 10:43 AM
Hi Mel,

Now that is a scary story that happened to your son! What was the herbal treatment and what brand? Just for the record?

You are right. There is the interacting issue. And the issue of quality ingredients. Also the pharmaceuticals have their down side as well. It all involves a LOT to use medicine wisely.

I think on the herbal remedies it is very helpful to take stuff recommended or sold by a qualified natural health care provider such as acupuncturist, etc. and generally not just walk into a health food store and try to self medicate. Except for maybe things like the BACH FLOWER remedies, which are harmless, it pays to get qualified advice. And high quality products.

Good discussion.

Valli

valli is not online. Last active: 6/13/2006 4:49:23 PM valli
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Re: Favorite Plants?
Posted: 13 May 2006 10:53 AM
Aloha,

Very interesting. Maybe the doctors do not have the time or patience, generally, to look deeper. But that is interesting that overweight and depression are frequent catch alls. Aren't mostly all women a little overweight and a little depressed? Are we all supposed to be perfect weight and totally exuberant? Where is reality? I don't mean women should slide down; we need to exercise, be positive and joyful. But isn't it interesting?

Valli

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