Category Archives: Herbs

How To Grow And Handle Fresh Herbs From Your Garden Beds Or Your Container Garden

How To Grow And Handle Fresh Herbs From Your Garden Beds Or Your Container Garden
How To Grow And Handle Fresh Herbs From Your Garden Beds Or Your Container Garden

In any recipe calling for herbs, use fresh herbs. Preparing the herbs for your dish is easy. The more tender herbs like mint, parsley, basil and cilantro can be gathered in a bowl and snipped with scissors. This is the fastest and safest way to chop the herbs. If your recipe calls for the more hardy herbs like oregano, rosemary, or thyme you should use the stripping method. Hold a branch of the herb upright in your fingers and run the fingers of your other hand down the stalk stripping the tiny leaves free. The flavor will be more intense if you have gathered the herbs from your herb gardens or container gardens because they will be absolutely the freshest herbs available.

The best way to have fresh herbs is to plant and grow them yourself. No longer is there a designated herb garden. They can be found in your flower beds, along walkways or in pots on your porch. Many ambitious gardeners are finding new ways to incorporate herbs into their garden beds and their container gardens.

Many gardeners are unaware of the beauty of flowering herbs and never consider planting them within their flower beds. Some herbs that have beautiful flowers are purple coneflower, catmint, bee balm, yarrow, pinks, lavender, pot marigold, borage, feverfew, and nasturtium which is particularly lovely in fresh salads.. Many other herbs, such as parsley are excellent next to flowers of all sorts because of their spectacular foliage. When planting red or blue flowers, place purple basil around them for an artful arrangement.

Another area to consider is to use herbs as ground cover. The herbs that are suitable to this are the low growing oregano, chamomile, woolly and other creeping thyme, mint, and rosemary. Not only will it look pretty but it will be absolutely fragrant. Just be careful of the mint family, they tend to take over everything.

One of the best ways I have grown herbs is in containers. In fact, I like container gardening so much I wrote my eBook Container Gardening Secrets (available at ContainerGardeningSecrets.com), so everyone could enjoy this type of gardening. The beauty of a container garden is that it is portable and can be changed at a moment’s whim. When there is no more room in your garden, start a container garden which you can place on your door step or patio. Use them to fill in bare spots that come up during the gardening season or put them on a sunny window sill in your home for easy harvesting. Best of all you can bring your herb containers inside over the winter months and continue to harvest for months to add to your tasty meals or to be used for medicinal purposes.

Another way to employ pots in your garden is to plant invasive herbs such as mint into a pot and then plant pot and all into the ground. This is an easy trick to keep those creepers from taking over your garden beds.

Plant a container garden near your door with the cherry pie scented blue flower heliotrope and other fragrant herbs such as rosemary, thyme and basil. Every time you walk by you will be greeted with there delicious scent.

Some herbs that have grown on rocky hillsides over the centuries such as thyme, oregano and lavender are perfect for cracks in flag stone paths or walls and rock gardens. They thrive in hot dry areas with good drainage. Some believe that those herbs grown in these conditions produce much better flavor.

Now is the time to plant your herbs, whether it is in a garden bed, a cracked wall or a container garden. Use your imagination. Consider color height and texture when planting your gardens. Not only will it be visually pleasing but your cooking will improve too!

Happy Gardening!

Copyright © 2006 Mary Hanna All Rights Reserved.

This article may be distributed freely on your website and in your ezines, as long as this entire article, copyright notice, links and the resource box are unchanged.

Everyone Needs A Spaghetti Garden

Spaghetti Garden
Spaghetti Garden

One of the delightful pleasures of life are herbs. Besides adding beauty to your garden they make foods taste better and provide a pleasant scent to the air we breathe. In George Washington days everyone had a herb garden that they used for culinary, teas and medicinal purposes. That practice is slowly coming back.

A spaghetti garden is one of the most popular kitchen gardens. Anyone that has a sunny patch of ground or a window-box can grow these herbs of parsley, garlic, basil, bay laurel and oregano. A small garden space can easily yield all the herbs that you’ll need for delicious Italian meals. They are even easy to grow in a sunny window for your year-round use.

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Basil: The King of Herbs

Basil: The King of Herbs
Basil: The King of Herbs

One of the most popular herbs is Ocimum basilicum commonly called sweet basil. Often called the king of herbs, basil can be grown indoors or out. Sweet basil has inch-long, oval-pointed, dark green leaves and a clove-pepperish odour and taste. Sweet basil makes a handsome, bushy small plant, growing to a foot or more indoors. A purple-leafed variety, Dark Opal is decorative, makes a lovely houseplant, and is equally useful in cookery. Do not let basil bloom, or it will go to seed. Instead, pinch out the plant tops and they will grow into compact little bushes.

Basil is an annual and grows 12 & 24 inches (30 & 60 cm) as the height varies according to the variety. Cultivation requirements for growing basil: full sun; light, well-drained, nutrient rich, slightly acidic soil; frequent watering (don’t water log); will not tolerate cold; pinch off flower stalks for a longer season of leaf production.

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Herb And Vegetable Gardens Are Landscapes Too!

Herb And Vegetable
Herb And Vegetable

Most people think of landscaping as rocks carefully placed, manicured lawns, and large trees scattered about a property. However, a garden can make a very attractive addition to any landscape. Whether it is an herb garden or whether it is a vegetable garden, these features can be just as beautiful as any other landscape element, and provide added benefits as well. Well maintained vegetable and herb gardens also provide other benefits: they are a source of food and can be a source of very pleasing smells.

An herb garden is one of the most common types of edible landscape. This is because they are very easy to grow, very tolerant of a variety of climates and conditions, and because they grow rapidly. Additionally, herbs are more than just tasty. Many of them look very nice, with attractively shaped leaves and different shades of green that can add a subtle beauty to the landscape. Not only that, but herbs often smell nice. They can surround your home with a pleasing perfume that exudes a true sense of home.

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Thyme: The Herb of Courage

thyme
thyme

Garden thyme, fresh or dried, alone or combined with parsley and bay leaves to make a bouquet garni, adds a distinctive aromatic flavouring to meats, poultry, stews, sauces, and stuffing. Thymus vulgaris, commonly known as cooking thyme, English thyme, French thyme, or winter thyme is just one of the 350 species of the genus Thymus. Often called the herb of courage, garden thyme can be grown indoors or out. Thyme is a shrubby perennial with small, oval, narrow, grey-green leaves, long, woody, branched stems, and sturdy roots. This plant blooms in mid-summer and has lavender-pink flowers that occur in small clusters. The flowers attract bees and the honey produced is highly valued. The leaves are very aromatic. Leaves, stems, and flowers may all be eaten.

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Herb Gardening

Herbs have been around since time immemorial. Ever since, herbs have served different kinds of purposes. Herbs have been used to treat illness and also in cooking. They were even believed to have magical charms. Do you want to have your own herb garden? Here are a few ideas on how to establish an herb garden.

Plan you garden.

Consider the herbs you want to plant. Think about their types. Would you like annuals, biennials or perennials?

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