Comfrey

By Penny Woodward

Comfrey has lovely bell shaped flowers

Comfrey has lovely bell shaped flowers

A form of Russian comfrey with deep purple blue flowers

A form of Russian comfrey with deep purple blue flowers

Comfrey (Symphytum species) is a multi-purpose plant that has a place in every organic and permaculture garden. It comes originally from Europe and is an herbaceous perennial in the Boraginaceae family. It’s natural habitat is damp, grassy places like river banks and ditches. The large, hairy leaves grow in a clump up to a height of about 1m and about 1m across. Flowers are bell-like, grow in clusters and can be mauve, purple, pink and white. Read more

Compost with a dash of herbs

Chamomile is good for the compost as it sweetens the mixture

Perennial chamomile adds calcium and 'sweetens' the compost.

Just as the success of a meal depends on the quality of the ingredients, so too does the success of a compost heap. If you add only kitchen scraps you’re likely to end up with a slimy, black mess and if it’s all leaves and twigs then the chances are that is what will still be there months later. The fine detail of a compost recipe varies depending on the expert you are consulting, but all compost systems require free drainage, adequate moisture and a mixture of strawy, open material and green plant tissue. The purpose of composting is to break down garden and kitchen ‘waste’ into humus that can then be added to the garden to supply nutrients in a form that can be readily used by plants. Read more

  • All words and images © Copyright Penny Woodward 2019.
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