Yes, we have a little bit different post this time but hopefully it will inspire you to grow your own herbs. I – Carl, like gardening so I’ll share some things I’ve learned about these herbs.
Rosemary, is a woody, perennial herb with fragrant, evergreen, needle-like leaves and white, pink, purple, or blue flowers, native to the Mediterranean region. It is reasonably hardy in cool climates. It can withstand droughts, surviving a severe lack of water for lengthy periods. Forms range from upright to trailing, the upright forms can reach 1.5 m or 5 ft tall, rarely 2 m or 6 ft 7 in. It is considered easy to grow and pest-resistant. Rosemary can grow quite large and retain attractiveness for many years, can be pruned into formal shapes and low hedges. In colder climate such as in Northern Europe, make sure to take it to inside windowsill after summer since it won’t survive our winters. Trust me, I’ve tried many times.
Lavender is native to the Old World and is found from Cape Verde and the Canary Islands, Europe across to northern and eastern Africa, the Mediterranean, southwest Asia to southeast India. Many members of the genus are cultivated extensively in temperate climates as ornamental plants for garden and landscape use, for use as culinary herbs, and also commercially for the extraction of essential oils. The genus includes annual or short-lived herbaceous perennial plants, and shrub-like perennials, subshrubs or small shrubs. Lavender is grown as a condiment and used in salads and dressings. The flowers yield abundant nectar, from which bees make a high-quality honey. You can make tea from lavender flowers and leafs since it has relaxing properties. If you live in colder climates make sure to protect it from direct frost while outside.
via Whole Food Home
Basil is also called the “king of herbs” and the “royal herb”. Basil is possibly native to India, and it has been cultivated there for more than 5,000 years. It is a tender plant, best known as a culinary herb prominently featured in Italian cuisine, and also plays a major role in Southeast Asian cuisines. There are many varieties of basil, as well as several related species or species hybrids also called basil. The type used in Italian food is typically called sweet basil. Most common varieties of basil are treated as annuals, but some are perennial in warm, tropical climates. You can grow basil from seeds or cuttings. I usually grow basil from cuttings because I’ve noticed that these plants are bigger and bushier than these from seeds.
A perennial plant, it is widespread in nature across much of Europe, Asia, and North America. Chives are a bulb-forming plants, growing to 30–50 cm or 12–20 in tall. Chives are a commonly used herb and can be found in grocery stores or grown in home gardens. In culinary use, the scapes and the unopened, immature flower buds are diced and used as an ingredient for fish, potatoes, soups, and other dishes. Chives have insect-repelling properties that can be used in gardens to control pests.
8) LEMON BALM
Lemon balm is a perennial plant that is native to south-central Europe, the Mediterranean, Iran, and Central Asia, but now naturalized in the Americas and elsewhere. It grows to a maximum height of 70–150 cm (28–59 in). The leaves have a mild lemon scent similar to mint. During summer, small white flowers full of nectar appear. The leaves are used as an herb, in teas, and also as a flavouring. The plant is used to attract bees for honey production. The sweet smell of lemon balm is very relaxing and refreshing at the same time.
Mint also known as Mentha has many species, it is estimated that 13 to 18 species exist, and the exact distinction between species is still unclear. Hybridization between some of the species occur naturally. Many other hybrids, as well as numerous cultivars, are known. Mints are widely distributed and can be found in many environments, most grow best in wet environments and moist soils. Mints will grow 10–120 cm tall and can spread over an indeterminate area. Due to their tendency to spread unchecked, some mints are considered invasive. It is best to grow mints in containers or pots. In Middle Eastern cuisine, mint is used on lamb dishes, while in British cuisine and American cuisine, mint sauce and mint jelly are used, respectively. Mint is widely used for tea.
Parsley is native to the central Mediterranean region, naturalized elsewhere in Europe, and widely cultivated as a herb. Where it grows as a biennial, in the first year, it forms a rosette of tripinnate leaves 10–25 cm or 3.9–9.8 in long with numerous 1–3 cm or 0.4–1.2 in leaflets, and a taproot used as a food store over the winter. Parsley is widely used in European, Middle Eastern, and American cooking. Curly leaf parsley is often used as a garnish in central Europe, eastern Europe and southern Europe, as well as in western Asia. Parsley attracts several species of wildlife like butterflies and birds that feed on the seeds. I reccomend growing parsley although I personally aren’t crazy about parsley’s taste. It is very healthy and some reasearchers even say it has anti-cancer effects.
Sage is a perennial, evergreen subshrub, with woody stems, grayish leaves, and blue to purplish flowers. It is native to the Mediterranean region, though it has naturalized in many places throughout the world. Cultivars are quite variable in size, leaf and flower color, and foliage pattern, with many variegated leaf types but the Old World type grows to approximately 2 ft or 0.61 m tall and wide, with lavender flowers, though they can also be white, pink, or purple. Sage has for generations been listed as one of the essential herbs, along with parsley, rosemary and thyme in many European countries like Britain. It has a savory, slightly peppery flavor. It appears in many European cuisines, notably Italian, Balkan and Middle Eastern cookery. Sage shouldn’t survive the harsh winters of Northern Europe without proper protection but sage has survived in our garden despite the cold, rain, snow and wind for over 5 years now. Sage needs light pruning every year but it’s nothing overly complicated.
Thyme is a small, attractive perennial herb with a plethora of small white, pink, or lilac flowers. Incredibly, there are more than 350 known thyme species, undoubtedly because they hybridize so easily. Thyme can be bushy or low-growing, with leaves varying in color from deep to paler green shades, some with touches of olive, silver (one of the hardiest), or bronze. Thyme is easy to grow, especially in sunshine, thriving in rocky crevices or containers. It’s one herb which snow can be brushed from to harvest the sprigs for kitchen use. The flowers of thyme are known for the nectar they generate, which attracts bees that subsequently produce thyme-infused honey. Mostly used in Mediterranean dishes. One of my all time favourite herb.
via Quiet Corner
Cilantro, also known as coriander or Chinese parsley, is an annual herb that is native to regions spanning from southern Europe and northern Africa to southwestern Asia. It is a soft plant growing to 50 cm or 20 in tall. All parts of the plant are edible, but the fresh leaves and the dried seeds are the parts most traditionally used in cooking. Cilantro is used in cuisines throughout the world from South Asia to Mexico. It grows very well even in Northern European climate where I live, but some people find the leaves of cilantro to have an unpleasant soapy taste. So make sure that you like it’s taste before growing it.
2) WINTER SAVORY
Winter savory is native to warm temperate regions of southern Europe and Mediterranean. It is a perennial plant growing to 16 in or 41 cm tall and it has beautiful white flowers that bumblebees love. It makes an attractive border plant for any herb garden. It requires six hours of sun a day and soil that drains well. But don’t worry from my experience it doesn’t need almost any maintenance. Winter savory goes very well with both beans and meats, very often lighter meats such as chicken and turkey. It has a strong flavour while uncooked but loses much of its flavour after cooking.
via Bonnie Plants
Oregano is an important culinary and medicinal herb that has been used in medicine and cooking for thousands of years – with a number of potential health benefits. It is native to temperate western and southwestern Eurasia and the Mediterranean region. Oregano typically grows 50 cm tall and has purple leaves around 2 to 3 centimeters in length. Oregano’s most prominent modern use is as the staple herb of Italian-American cuisine. It self-seeds pretty heavily based from my own experience with oregano and it grows well even on the less sunny years. Oregano is one herb that can become a weed and even overpower other herbs if you don’t maintain it regularly. But there’s one great thing- it’s culinary quality doesn’t go worse by not maintaining it and you’ll just get more oregano for your pasta and pizza. The lazy gardener’s dream, really!