Sage Hill Farms and Vintage Store

Growing Up In The Garden~

I’ve had a lot of mail from those who don’t have garden space, yet wish to grow some of their own food and herbs.

There is a new trend which isn’t new at all - my grandmother grew lots of things on trellises and stakes of all sorts. But for many, it is new and exciting.

Growing Up refers to planting in small spaces, in pots/containers and hanging baskets.

Think the ‘upside down’ tomato container.

You can use a patio, porch, or even your walkway…any place that gets 6 hours or more of sun will do. Now for those who don’t have sun, there are many shade loving plants and vegetables…but not many herbs. For herbs to do their best they have to have sun and preferably in the ground.

In upside down containers one can grow: tomatoes, cucumbers, beans, peppers, salad greens, and even eggplant. Make sure beans, cucumbers, and eggplant are the climbing variety and not the bush kind.

May is the tricky crossover from cold season to summer temps…many things become demanding at once.

House plants should be repotted with fresh soil, plant or transplant trees and shrubs before it gets hot.

This is the month that many insect set up housekeeping…..check your plants every few days and at the first sign of any bad bugs…a liquid garlic spray will most often send them on their way…it is safe and washes off easily for consumption.

If you had a compost pile cooking over the winter…now is the time to add it to your gardens/containers, etc.

Remember….shrubs that flower in the spring, should be pruned immediately after the blooming stops…if you wait too long, new growth will begin and you will be pruning off next years blooms.

Southern gardens have cool season crops already in production…lettuces, Asian cabbage, spinach, strawberries, and spring onions. Be certain to keep them harvested on a regular basis in order to keep production coming. Greens of any kind will become bitter if not harvested often, they will also bolt (flower) and then they will start the dying process. Even if you can’t utilize the crop…either give it away or compost it. But keep it harvested.

I have seen many gardeners cut vegetable plants and let them fall back to the soil….this is great for herbs, but I don’t think it’s the best idea for vegetables…the decaying plants will invite bad bugs to dine and they will make a home where they can eat. Rake up and add to the compost pile until they finish the process of decay.

Tip…if you drip water your gardens, watch for mold and mildew, constant moisture is good for most plants, but it does invite some negatives.

This last year it seems has brought an abundance of attention and recognition to the subject of herbs, our food issues, and farms and farming…both large and small. We have a steady stream of ‘seekers’ coming to the farm looking for advice, information and instructions. Many have the desire and not the knowledge.

You may have noticed that I’ve included much more around vegetable gardening as well as herbs. I believe it is the time for Sage Hill to start a few new pathways…not for our own benefit, but for those who want and need a place to learn and learn the best ways.

IF…you are opting to grow anything at all, please do so without chemicals: otherwise you might as well be shopping for your needs in a mainstream market…if your reason is to have healthier foods.

Sage Hill planted earth friendly grasses for Earth Day, and a Red, White, and Blue garden for Veterans Day.

Something new will be offered very soon on the Sage Hill Farms website, look for a grand announcement in your inbox. I’m excited and I hope you will be too.

Do You Know….
with summer on the way, there is more outside time, and very quickly our skin can become stressed and damaged. There are some very good products and remedies if one is aware of where to find and how to use them.

No one has more exposure to the elements than I…and my skin is in excellent condition.

Thanks to: Anne Schrock and La’NE Enterprises at

Three trusted Essential oils that I wouldn’t be without…..

Lavender…for stressed and sunburned skin.
Sandalwood…to hydrate and repair dry damaged skin.
Malaleuca…for breakouts and blemishes.

**I don’t suggest applying E-oils directly to the face, they are very potent and some may be allergic to certain oils. A drop mixed with a TBSP of good Olive or Grape Seed , Coconut oil will work just fine. Not too close to the eyes ! And, never put E-oils in your ears.

When purchasing Essential oils you want to make certain to buy only medicinal grade oils, these are pure and undiluted or tampered with in any way that renders them useless for the health benefits they are meant to give.

Faye Durham is my go to person for education and product information. or search Faye on Facebook.

Now, if you are looking to take a vacation this summer you would be far ahead to check with my good friend Debbie Dryer for all you might need to find the perfect spot , help in getting there, and more…. m Love this website, you will too.

Ahhh, so much to talk about, not enough space in a newsletter.

Please feel free to contact me if you have question or need any gardening help.

Sage Hill Farms website had a facelift…..thanks to Vanessa Shelton, best VA in the world, we are looking good and on the move. Want to remake or just spice up your space on the web… call or visit Vanessa , no one does it better~

Hapy May~

Bea Rigsby-Kunz and The Sage Hill Farms family~