This is a special
edition of my biannual newsletter. In this issue, instead of my
usual focus on a noteworthy vegetable, I'm paying homage to an old
friend in the herb world. I send out with this my prayers that each
body and soul amongst us be well-nourished. Wishing you all happy
This ancient and
distinguished herb is a fitting companion as we approach the winter holidays. It comes to us surrounded by centuries of folk lore, and
its piney scent and evergreen leaves offer us both culinary and
by Elia Woods, 2005
Photo transfer, silk,
hand dyed cotton
reputation for strengthening the memory has made it a symbol of
fidelity in love, prompting its use at both weddings and funerals.
In ancient Greece, students wore rosemary garlands to improve their
memory. Spanish legend has it that Mary draped her cloak over a
rosemary bush on the Holy Family's flight to Egypt, thus turning its
flowers from white to blue. It was burned in hospitals in medieval
England for its antiseptic qualities. The tea is recommended for
colds and indigestion, and the quinones present in rosemary inhibit
Its flavor is
irreplaceable in breads, stuffing, soup, tea, herb butter, potatoes
and egg dishes. Rosemary sprigs make perfect skewers for grilling
vegetables, and the edible flowers are a lovely touch in green
generally grow about 3 feet high and bushy, and the evergreen leaves
are a welcome addition to the winter landscape. Most varieties are
hardy to 15 degrees, with a few varieties hardy to minus 10 degrees.
Rosemary thrives in a light, rather dry soil, in a sheltered
location with good drainage. It is drought tolerant and sun loving.
Small plants can
be potted and kept indoors during the winter, "if for no other
reason," to quote The Harrowsmith Salad Garden, "than the
pleasure of rubbing your hand over the needles as you walk through
the kitchen, releasing essence of rosemary into the air. It is an
antidote to weariness with the world."
n. [L. rosmarinus; ros, dew and marinus, sea.] a
verticillate plant, Rosmarinus officinalis, of the mint
family, native to the Mediterranean region, with clusters of small,
light-blue flowers and leaves that yield a fragrant essential oil,
used in making perfumes, in cooking, etc. Rosemary is conventionally
a symbol of remembrance and constancy.
Issue # 7 - December 2005
Exhibits & Classes
Museum of Art
Workshop: Stretched, Draped and Folded Photos
Sat., April 29,
10am-4pm. Explore the heat transfer method on cloth, experimenting
with form, movement and translucency. $40 members, $50
Call 236-3100 x213 or http://www.okcmoa.com to enroll for either class.
Pop-Up Cards with a Heart:
Sunday, Feb. 12, 1-4pm
Learn the techniques for making pop-up cards while creating a stack
unique cards for Valentines Day. $20 museum members, $25
Workshop at Artsplace Ponca City
21,10am-3pm, $25. Call (580) 762-1930 or artsplaceponcacity.net.
City Arts Center
on the Fairgrounds
weaving classes resume Jan. 10. Tuesdays, 7-9pm or Thursdays,
10am to noon, $104 includes supplies. Call 951-0000 to enroll.
Jan. 20 - Feb. 25. I'll have a collection of my latest hand
dyed and handwoven wearables.
"If I had
influence with the good fairy who is supposed to preside over the
christening of all children I should ask that her gift to each child
in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would
last throughout life, as an unfailing antidote against the boredom
and disenchantment of later years, the sterile preoccupation with
things that are artificial, the alienation from the sources of our
strength." Rachel Carson