Plants, Gardening, and Etc.
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The purpose of this is to provide a comprehensive resource for plants and SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING LALALA
The plants guide is purely intended for purposes relative to roleplaying. In absolutely no way should you rely on these statements to prevent, treat, or diagnose any illnesses. Do not take anything you read on the Wiki as sound medical advice; while it has been researched for realism, the contributors to this guide are in no way doctors and their advice and words should never be taken as such. Thank you!
2.1 More: Plants Category
A good herbalist will know the best time to harvest their particular plants -- e.g., the time of year that the plants are at their fullest bloom or strongest concentration. Picking should be done on rain-free and dew-free days to avoid complications from moulding. Flowers should be picked in the morning; roots and leaves should be picked in the afternoon. One should insure that the plants selected have had ample time to grow and have been taken from an area that will maximize their potential (e.g., for sun-loving plants, insure that the area is well-lit).
Different types of plants require different drying techniques. Green, above-ground plants should be dried in a hot, dark, and dry place. Roots and bark should be dried in well-lit, hot places. Most types of herbs can be hung up to dry, or placed on a grill and dried. Although fire-drying is effective and fast, one should be careful not to burn the plants, of course. Some types of roots -- e.g., garlic and ginger -- require a night's soak in water prior to processing to allow the outermost husk to be more easily peeled away. Some of these roots do not require drying if being made into a paste; powders still require drying prior to making the substance.
Most herbs can be stored in a darkened pot. It is important to make sure that the substances are completely dry prior to placing them into storage; moisture can lead to mold, which can of course ruin an entire batch of dried herbs! If paper is available, some herbs can be wrapped in paper or placed into a paper bag. Of course, given the scarcity of that resource, other storage methods are easier to access.
Maintaining a garden is no easy task in real life, with pesticides, fertilizer, and other such items, and can be quite frustrating even with these things - but in a post-apocalyptic world, where Luperci don't have those luxuries, it can be even more difficult to grow a successful garden. Remember - simply planting a seed and watering it won't give automatic results! Here are some things that will help your garden grow realistically without technology:
- Manure: Manure from cows, sheep, horses, and other livestock is valuable to a plant and will give it nutrients that poor soil wouldn't give it - remember, not all soil in Nova Scotia is rich with nutrients for your plants!
- Rotten Organics: Another thing that provides nutrients for plants are rotting organics; mainly rotting foods, such as fruit peels or vegetables. In nature, the fruit protects the plant seeds when they fall off the tree within the fruit, and then rot to give them nutrients - instead of planting just the seed, consider having your character plant the entire fruit or berry. Scattered peels and fruits also help a garden grow.
- Still Water: Water that's still (i.e. lakes, ponds, instead of rivers and streams) has microscopic organisms in them as well as minerals and nutrients that help speed plants' growth. Instead of feeding your character's plants water from streams, rivers, or rain, consider having him or her get the water from a nearby lake or pond!
- Sprinkling With Water: Remember that in the winter, your plants won't grow as quickly or as well as they would in spring or summer! To prevent plants from freezing over, sprinkle them with water during the cold winter months - the plants will absorb the heat from the water and leave ice on their leaves, which will protect them from further damage.
Chances are that the weather isn't going to be the only thing against your garden - there will likely be rodents, birds, and other vermin attempting to get at your food. Here are alternatives:
- Fences: Fences can keep large and small pests out, if you make sure to plug up any holes large enough for a rat to get inside. Another alternative is getting a cat, which can eat such pests.
- Onion, Marigold, Bayberry: Amongst other plants, these three drive off pests and insects.
Often times, you can't just stick every plant you see in a garden together - chances are, they won't get along, or the arrangement will be bad. Try having your character plant a garden with a 'theme' - this is called companion planting, and is quite useful for when you want plants to grow quickly while helping each other. This is a list of plants that help each other - on the left is the plant, and on the right are the plants it helps.
- Onion: Tomatoes, kales (broccoli, cabbage, etc.)
- Yarrow: Excellent general companion plant, does especially well with Rosemary, Thyme, and Sage
- More: List of companion plants
Another thing you should consider when roleplaying having a garden is the time of the year it is - you can't plant all your plants in the middle of winter and expect them to grow perfectly. Most plants do well in being planted in the spring - it's not too hot or too cold, so they're able to grow fine in the lukewarm weather. Try to avoid planting in the fall or winter, as in fall, the seedlings may die in the upcoming winter, and during the middle or beginning of the winter, it may also kill your seedlings. Planting near the end of winter, however, is fine, as when the sprouts emerge from the ground, it'll be spring time.
Nova Scotia has an overall hardiness level of 5a - hardiness level is how hardy and durable the plants in that region are. 5a means that most plants in Nova Scotia and native to the area can withstand cold up to -25 degrees C before they start to wither and die. To prevent plants from freezing over, consider having your character spray or sprinkle them with water!
- a slim, cylindrical flower cluster, with inconspicuous or no petals
- a plant that has leaves and stems that die down at the end of the growing season. No hard wood stems.
- plant that lives for 2+ years
- plant that survives for just one growing season
- subterranean root system
- a group or cluster of flowers arranged on a stem that is composed of a main branch or a complicated arrangement of branches
- Mast seeding
- mass seeding phenomenon, synchronous production of seed at long intervals by a population of plants.