Tips on Starting an Herb Garden

Herb gardens are very popular. Herbs are not only grown by culinary chefs, but by those who enjoy having fresh herbs to use themselves for cooking and enjoyment. Herbs will fit in with many garden styles, ranging from a kitchen garden to a rose garden. When one thinks of herbs, it seems to bring many thoughts to mind. Herbs even have been used to symbolize different things, such as, forget-me-not for remembrance. You can keep these things in mind whenyou plant an herb bed. You might choose a traditional pattern, an symmetrical pattern, or even a circular pattern in your outdoor designs.

growing herbs

Herbs do well in pots

Most popular herbs: Parsley, sage, thyme, rosemary, cilantro, basil, dill, oregano, sweet majoram, chives, savory, garlic chives, and mustard.

Herbs planted in a simple lay out of four squares, seems to follow a centuries old tradition which could be seen in monastery gardens during the early middle ages. Try planting some fragrant herbs close to a picnic bench table or your favorite park bench. That way you can enjoy the sweet smells as you sit outside.

Planting suggestions

Try to keep your culinary herbs separated from medicinal herbs, if you are growing both kinds. Remember that an herb garden follows the principles of general yard and garden layouts, with structural plants such as bay or rosemary forming the backbone of the design, followed by permanent smaller shrubs such as sage. Also, try to keep a good balance of evergreen and deciduous herbs so that your herb garden looks good in the winter season too.

herbs in containers

Container grown herbs

Herbs with blue hues

Blue hued-herbs include include sage, fennel, and angelica. For added color, try mixing your herbs in with Lavandula stoechas and allium. You might put in a blue container plant that might add more blue color to the mix.

The blue flowered borage and tall yellow fennel are two herbs that will produce seeds. The fennel is easy to pull up and remove, if needed. Be careful with the leaves of the borage, as they have tiny hairs that may irritate your skin.

Helpful Hints on Lavender

fragrant lavender

Fragrant Lavender

Pick lavender before the flower buds fully open. Tie up the flower stems with soft garden twine and hang them from a hook in a warm place to dry. They can also be dried on trays in an airing cupboard or other warm area. When they dry, remove them from the stems and put them into lavender bags for scenting  your clothes, or in a bowl to add fragrance to your home. You could also tie a bunch of them together and braid the stems with a purple satin ribbon. Lavender can be added to food too. It has a flavor similar to rosemary, but is more aromatic.

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