Archives for category: Permaculture

Vervain flower remedy is made from the flowers of Verbena officinalis which has a long history as a medicinal herb. Of all the Bach Flower Remedy plants we’ve grown from seed Vervain has been the most prolific, growing over-enthusiastically in tray after tray!

vervain flower remedy plantThis over-enthusiasm is the key to how vervain flower remedy is used.  Vervain flower remedy is for people who want to convert others to their ideals and won’t stop until they’ve done so. They try to enthuse others with their passion; often overwork, can’t switch off and subsequently become tense and burnt out.

Vervain flower remedy brings balance so if you find it difficult to switch off, vervain will help you to let go and relax more easily.

We’ve planted it all over the site – partly because we had so much of it and partly because it’s notable for attracting wildlife.


Here at the Bach Flower Remedy Garden we’ve been tending seeds and little plants for months so it felt great to plant some of them into the soil at last.

planting herbsWe planted vervain (Verbena officinalis) and chicory (Cichorium intybus) at the back of the south-facing perennial herb bed. Vervain grows to 2ft and chicory’s bright blue flowers can reach 5ft tall. They will make a beautiful backdrop to the lower growing herbs.

watering herbsWe began planting in the raised bed which has had limestone added to the soil to create a more alkaline bed to suit the plants which thrive in those conditions.

raised bed with limestoneHere you can see the Bach Flower Remedy plants rock rose (Helianthemum mummularium), vervain (Verbena officinalis) and chicory (Cichorium intybus). We’ll be planting olive (Olea europaea), cerato (Ceratostigma willmottianum), agrimony (Agrimonia eupatoria), clematis (Clematis vitalba), centaury (Centaurium erythraea) and gentian (Gentianella amarella) into this bed when they’re ready.

raised bed at Offshoots permacultureAcid-loving heather (Calluna vulgaris) needs a different environment altogether. The acid bed where the blueberries grow had been taken over by invasive hedge bindweed so we had a mammoth weeding session to make space for the little heather plants.

planting heather calluna vulgarisHeather is one of the Bach Flower Remedies that treats loneliness. We tucked them into their new bed, smiling to think that the other Bach Flower Remedy plants that treat loneliness (impatiens and water violet) are growing just a couple of feet away!

tending heather plants at Offshoots permacultureA huge thank you to the brilliant volunteers who brought enthusiasm, knowledge and hard work to our planting day!

These are the seed-trays where we’ve planted seedlings for the Bach Flower Garden. We planted Clematis, Gentian, Mustard, Centaury and Vervain. Can you see any sign of green shoots coming through? They’re in the lean-to on a heated mat getting lots of sunlight through the windows but it doesn’t look like much is happening yet……

Meanwhile outside some of the volunteers have created a new raised bed which is wonderful! This new bed in one of the sunniest spots on-site, just at the entrance and against a South-facing wall. Lime has been added to the soil so that we can grow the plants that prefer calcerous soil. This bed is where we’ll be growing the most delicate plants, along with those that are real sun-worshippers. We’ll be creating a forest garden effect with low ground-covering plants like Centaury, Gentian and Rock Rose, leading up to the taller plants like Agrimony, Chicory, Vervain and Cerato, and finally Clematis and Olive as the tallest level.

We may need to do a site visit to test the pH of the soil at Salthill Quarry where Centaury, Gentian and Agrimony thrive in the wild. Gentian (Gentianella amarella) is a rare little plant and we want to do our best to give it a happy home to live in. We’ve planted one tray of Gentian seeds just to see if it will grow from seed in spring.  In the wild, propagation would happen in autumn so we may need to replicate its natural rhythm for success and try again with the gentian seeds in October.