The Greenhouse At Morgan Lane

  (Delano, Tennessee)
Organically raised culinary herbs year round and unusual and unique varieties of vegetable plants. Morgan Horses.
[ Member listing ]

Don't kill your violets

Don’t Kill your Violets!

What tiny plant with lovely, scented flowers and heart-shaped leaves is packed with vitamins and antioxidants? Violets! These tiny colorful plants are an excellent ground cover for shady places, provide a bright green leaf backdrop for daffodils, tulips, and other Spring flowers, and fresh eating too.

Violet flowers are edible, and often used to decorate cakes and fancy desserts.  The bright green leaves are edible raw, or cooked. The tender young leaves are best to use raw.

Candied violet flowers are easy to make, and keep for several days or up to a year, depending on the way that you preserve them and the container that they are kept in.  Children, Elderly, or the disabled, can help to preserve them.  Remove the stems. Take a small paint brush and brush the petals with egg white and then dip them or sprinkle them with fine sugar.  Do not become over-enthusiastic at “painting” the egg white on, a light coating is enough. Alternatively, you can make a simple syrup of water and sugar and then dip the flower in the syrup and swirl the stem of the violet flower to coat the flower.  Set aside on a plate or waxed paper to dry.

Fresh violet flowers can be sprinkled in a salad or a fruit salad, or tuck a few flowers and leaves next to cottage cheese or fruit.  The heart-shaped leaves make a perfect sized “server” for appetizers at a bridal or baby shower, or a Spring time Tea Party.  The flowers can be frozen in ice cubes to use in party drinks or punch.

ALWAYS make sure that the flowers and leaves that you use have not been sprayed with herbicide or insecticide!  If you are not sure whether the flowers have been sprayed, Do NOT use them. Never pick flowers from a roadside to eat. We grow everything on our farm organically, so our violets are food-safe.

Many species of butterfly larvae also use violets as a food source.  These tiny plants are a good way to bring butterflies to your garden.

Many people in the United States are fond of a “perfect” lawn. Wild violets will self-seed in shady areas where thick, lush lawns may be hard to maintain, especially in the SouthEastern states with the popular Fescue grass lawns. Usual herbicides are not as effective at killing off “Volunteer” violets.  But try not to poison your violets, and your lawn.  Enjoy these pretty little flowers and their heart shaped leaves.  If you keep your lawn mowed, you will hardly notice the plants the rest of the year. In the Spring, let the grass grow just a bit to enjoy these lovely little Spring flowers and greens.

There are many species of violets, including violets, violas, Johnny-Jump-Ups, and pansies. Some discussion of common or “dog” violets versus a “sweet” violet occur…but all have edible flowers and leaves.  Some will be more tasty and flavorful than others.

Georgia Denman gardens at her family farm in Delano, TN, and lets all the violets grow in the lawn, and purposely plants them in her flower beds.


Autumn Plant Sale

We are having a Fall Greenhouse Sale at our Organic greenhouse.  Come enjoy the fresh air, gorgeous scenery, and see the beautiful Morgan Horses.

We have quality, farm raised, organically grown plants at reasonable prices all year round. During this Autumn
Sale, almost every plant will be ON SALE.

Culinary Herbs, Drought Tolerant Perennials, Houseplants, Hanging Baskets, & Heirloom Peppers.


Produce Available - Organically Raised; call for availability


We have baby and larger Squash available: White bush scalloped; yellow crookneck; Raven green Zucchini.



Swiss Chard – Bright Lights; multi-hued stalks.

Specialty Egyptian Walking Onions…can use like Scallions, Shallots, Bunching Onions

Culinary Herbs of Numerous varieties.

Also unique and unusual plants.


Health Kick Tomato Hybrid Questions

Health Kick Tomatoes:

I just had a call from a customer wanting Health Kick Tomatoes.  Supposedly lots more Lycopene than other tomatoes; and bigger, etc than regular Romas.

We grow over thirty types of tomatoes…mostly heirlooms, and ethnic varieties. But a few hybrids. 

I did a quick search and they are a hybrid; non-GMO (genetically modified) variety, and been around for awhile.

I’m a big fan of San Marzano.  I do grow a few plants of Romas.  But I like San Marzanos better.  They are larger, and meatier with better flavor, in my opinion.

Does anyone know of any Health Kick Tomato plants available in the SoEast TN area for my caller?

Has anyone done a comparison between the Health Kick and the San Marzano?

I was wondering if the Health Kick is a spinoff of the San Marzano, as the descriptions that I read did not say what it was a hybrid from.



Charitable donation of Organically raised Tomato Plants to a Community or Church Garden near Delano Tennessee

Wanted: An established local (to Delano Tennessee) Community Garden, or Church Garden.

We have some extra Organically raised Tomato Plants available.

Caitrin cannot possibly get all of them planted in our gardens, and then harvested.

We are willing to donate them to an established Community or Church Garden.  We want to be able to visit the garden, and know that the plants are benefitting our neighbors.

If you fit this description, please call us to discuss what plants we have available.

If more than one Community Garden contacts us, we will attempt to share the plants.  God grants us a miracle every year, to watch tiny seeds grow to be productive plants.  These plants are healthy, can feed the hungry, and should not go to waste.

If you are interested, and can prove that you are nearby and not for profit, and can utilize the plants to feed the hungry, give us a call.


Georgia's Hints for growing pepper plants

Georgia’s Hints for Gardening with Peppers


Peppers are members of the Solanacae Family.  They are related to Tomatoes, Potatoes, Eggplant and Belladonna.  They are NOT related to black cooking pepper.


We grow numerous varieties of bells, sweet and HOT peppers, on a broad spectrum of HEAT…MILD, child-safe to some of the HOTTEST in the world. Currently, we have over seventy – five varieties.  Availability varies, and new varieties are always being added.  Pepper plants are actually tender perennials, and we do have some varieties available that winter over in the Greenhouse. 


Peppers are a relatively easy plant to grow in the garden.  Many are extremely ornamental.  They look beautiful in mixed borders, and can be utilized in container gardens, even hanging baskets, and naturally, rows in the vegetable patch, or raised beds. 


Height of pepper varieties can vary quite a bit, from short mounding ornamental plants that stay about a foot to 18 inches in height, through compact plants of two to three feet in height to some varieties that can be like a tall shrub, up to six feet in height.  When deciding on the types of peppers that you want to harvest, take note of the growth size of the plant.


Set plants out with an appropriate amount of room for growth and ease of harvesting.  Most pepper plants can be set 12 to 18 inches apart in rows 24 to 36 inches apart.  Just make sure that if you choose a taller growing plant, that you allow for its size.


Most peppers are open pollinated and can cross-pollinate.  This can yield interesting variations, but makes seed-saving somewhat difficult to ensure true to type peppers in ensuing seasons.


Pepper plants like a warm soil.  It is better to hold them back from placing in the garden, or transplant them to a larger pot, until the soil is warm.  Putting them in the garden too early can hold back growth and setting of fruit/pods/the peppers.


Peppers generally do not like the temperature to get too high, or too low.  This can also hold back the setting of fruit. 


Pick the peppers as soon as they reach a mature size, in order to encourage continuous setting of fruit.


Introducing our Family Farm:Culinary Herbs, Morgan Horses, and Unusual Vegetable Varieties


This is the start of our blog for Local Harvest.  Let me introduce ourselves to you.

We are a small, family farm in the Smokie Mountains of east Tennessee. We are in Delano, halfway between Chattanooga and Knoxville; between Cleveland and Athens; and between Benton and Etowah.  We are on the border of Polk and McMinn counties, 15 miles off Interstate 75, between Routes 11 and 411. 

Our planting zone is a solid Zone 7.

We organically raise vegetable, edible flower and culinary herb plants year round from seed.  We grow 98% of our plants ourselves.  We grow unusual and unique varieties, heirlooms, and for use in ethnic cuisines.  We also have a large herd of Morgan Horses on the farm ranging from foals to senior citizens.

We are firm believers in creative ways to reduce, reuse and recycle.  In the blog, I’ll tell you about some of the things we did to set up the greenhouse in a sustainable, environmentally friendly manner.  I look forward to sharing ideas whether you grow one chive plant on your windowsill or hundreds of acres in production.

I’ll attempt to tell you what’s going on at the farm, or something about cooking and gardening with herbs, at least once a week…year round.


For John, Georgia and Britta Denman; Caitrin, Kaya, and Tre Bayard; and Elizabeth, Michael, Amber, and Kimberly McGee.

The Greenhouse At Morgan Lane and Sleipnir Morgan Horse Farm


RSS feed for The Greenhouse At Morgan Lane blog. Right-click, copy link and paste into your newsfeed reader