Gardens are a gathering place for those who love to work in the dirt and enjoy the colors of nature. Beaufort Garden Club members recently hosted a tour of yards in Beaufort and on Lady's Island where attendees could explore, enjoy and develop ideas for bringing beauty to their own yards.
Growing plants is hard work, but the beauty of greenery makes it worth it.
Here are my notes on the women who graciously allowed us to tour their gardens:
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On the first day of the Garden-a-Day tour, more than 350 people came out to revel in nature and gather ideas. Garden club members could be identified by green and white ribbons. They were wonderful hostesses -- everyone was offered peach tea and molasses cookies, all baked from the same Grandma's Molasses recipe found on the back of the jar. The interesting thing was that each batch of cookies took on the personality of the baker, causing some to be soft, some to be small and some to be hard. One thing was sure: All were good.
Some folks might think the secret to the beautiful gardens lies in the refreshments. Let's give it a try and see how our plants grow.
OLD-FASHIONED SOFT MOLASSES COOKIES
Makes: 4 to 5 dozen cookies
4 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 cup hot water
41/2 cups sifted flour
2 teaspoons ginger
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
1 cup molasses
1/4 cup coffee or water
Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Dissolve baking soda in hot water and set aside to cool. Mix and sift flour, spices and salt. Cream shortening, slowly add sugar and cream until fluffy. Stir in unbeaten egg and mix well. Stir in molasses. Add sifted dry ingredients alternately with coffee or water, beating well after each addition. Stir in cold baking soda mixture. Drop by teaspoonfuls on greased cookie sheets and bake for 10 minutes.
Store cookies in a tightly covered cookie jar. Place a few slices of bread in the jar to keep the cookies soft.
1/2 gallon water
6 tea bags
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons peach extract
Bring 1 quart of water to boil. Turn heat to low and add tea bags. Steep for 10 minutes; add sugar and stir. Add peach extract and add enough water to make 1/2 gallon. Pour over ice to cool. Garnish with peach slices.