The Huntsville Item, Huntsville, TX

Local News

March 28, 2012

Herb Society to host first Herb Festival

HUNTSVILLE — There's more to herbs than meets the eye.

The Texas Thyme Unit of the Herb Society of America has a simple mission – to teach people about herbs and their uses. For the first time, the Texas Thyme Unit is hosting its own Herb Festival separate from the Huntsville Garden Club, which will hold its festival in April.

The Texas Thyme Unit will host its festival from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday on the grounds of The Wynne Home Arts Center.

Maryann Readal, vice-president of the Texas Thyme Unit, said the event will offer something for everyone.

“We really wanted to have something here at the Wynne Home and we plan to do this every year,” she said. “We'll be selling plants and things you can't get everywhere like comfrey and a big variety of basil.”

Speaker Judy Barrett will talk about roses, the herb of the year.

“The petals are edible and you can make jam out of rose hips,” Readal said. “We're really fortunate to be able to have her.”

Barrett will also be signing copies of her books, “What Can I do With My Herbs,” and “Myths and Truths about Growing Roses.”

Master Gardeners Bonney Kennedy and Glenda Marsh will speak on using herbs to attract butterflies and hummingbirds to your garden. Jean Marsh will lead a workshop on herbal vinegars.

The event will also include an herb, camellia and rose plant sale, herbal crafts and products, bake sale, art and music, kitchen and garden vendors, demonstrations and workshop and tours of the Ella Ruth Herb Garden. Vendors will also be on-site, including Pampered Chef and Scentsy.

“We'll have someone selling herbal soaps, gourd art and jewelry,” Readal said. “We hope people come out and learn more about herbs and get excited. You can spice up your cooking or put in a garden. A lot of herbs are drought resistant. They're a lot of fun and they come back year after year.”

Pointing to the herb garden on the grounds of the Wynne Home as an example, Readal said herbs are bug resistant and easy to maintain.

“This garden is an example of how pretty they can be,” she said. “A lot of them have such a neat, neat history. They're interesting plants. We're hoping to expand our garden with the proceeds from the sale.”

The Texas Thyme Unit of the Herb Society of America will host its first annual Herb Day at the Wynne Home from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at The Wynne Home Arts Center.

For more information, call (936) 891-5024.

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