Stevia, Stevia Rebaudiana, The All Natural Sugar Free Sweetener

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Posted by John Minton | Posted in Plants | Posted on 26-04-2011

I got my Stevia plant just a month ago at my local Home Depot for less than $4. It looks like something that would grow in a field of weeds, though it will flower! Stevia is a slightly delicate but it grows fast. Stevia is easy to grow, I associate it’s growth and growing conditions with Mint. Basically plant Stevia in well drained soil, don’t let it dry out, don’t over water and bring it indoors in the Winter. It can go outside in the Spring when it warms up.

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Cestrum Nocturnum, Night Blooming Jasmine

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Posted by John Minton | Posted in Plants | Posted on 23-04-2011

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Cestrum Nocturnum, Night Blooming Jasmine, is a pretty fun plant – one of my favorites! If you are familiar with the Jasminum family one look at the Cestrum Nocturnum and you know it’s not a true Jasmine! (Because it’s Cestrum, duh.) While most Jasmine are vines, even shrubby with a mass of complex branches going every which way, the Night Blooming Jasmine Cestrum Nocturnum is fairly simple and vertical in stature. The flowers open to a small face but are long along the reproductive parts. Cestrum Nocturnum is called a “Jasmine” for a few reasons: Cestrum Nocturnum has fragrant flowers like Jasmine and Cestrum Nocturnum opens it’s blooms at night like Jasmine. Cestrum Nocturnum smells amazing at night when it’s blooms open up. You pretty much can not smell Night Blooming Cestrum Nocturnum during the day at all. As the name “Nocturnum” infers, this plant is nocturnal, rather, it just opens it’s flowers at night. (You can see how using Latin names helps us name plants.) It’s worth noting, some people inappropriately call this plant Jasminum Nocturnum, but it’s not a true Jasmine and it’s not a part of the Jasminum family.

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