One of the things that I enjoy most about spring, is growing fresh herbs in my garden. Besides the natural beauty and romance they add to ones garden, there are very practical reasons to add culinary herbs to your garden, especially if you love to cook. As many homecooks know, nothing beats the flavor of fresh herbs in your recipes savory or sweet. Can you imagine salsa without cilantro, a mojito without fresh mint or pesto without sweet basil? Even more, I can't imagine making roast chicken without rosemary and thyme. More importantly, it is more economical to grow your own since they can cost a pretty penny at the supermarket. Furthermore, certain herbs, such as rosemary, lavender, peppermint, catnip and lemon balm are natural bug repellents. And if you have little doggies running around your garden, word is, rosemary and catnip repel fleas. So it is probably a good idea to plant a few of these plants in different areas of your garden.
The first thing to consider is their location. For a culinary herb garden, it should be close to your kitchen where you can quickly grab a sprig of your needed herbs when you are cooking. The second thing to consider is a spot that gives your herbs at least 6 hours of direct sun daily. While herbs like parsley, mint and chives may do fine with partial sun, they will be happier and perform much better with a few hours of sun. In the hot summer months, you may want to relocate your herbs where it gets morning sun, so the intense heat of the afternoon doesn't kill your herbs. I for one, prefer to plant my herbs in containers to make it easier to move them around when I need to. I also like to keep a small containers with herbs in my kitchen for those days that I am in a rush. Lastly, remember to plant your herbs in good soil. Culinary herbs need a well drained, fertile soil to grow their best. And remember to trim them often. Trimming off the flower heads will help the plants perform better.
If you decide to grow your own herb garden, grow the herbs that you like to use most. For me, Rosemary & Thyme are in abundance in my garden since they are my favorite culinary herbs and the inspiration for my blog's name. If you like to cook Italian dishes, then plant plenty of sweet basil, oregano, Italian parsley and rosemary. if you prefer French recipes, you can plant herbs such as thyme, tarragon, chives, rosemary, marjoram and lavender to name a few. And if you like Mexican food, cilantro is a must. Now what about you, do you plant any herbs?
Here are a few photos of the herbs I planted this weekend for my own garden. And above all, remember to have fun, start small and keep it simple. I can assure you that you will be pleasantly surprised by the fantastic flavors that your fresh herbs will add to you recipes.
Thank you for stopping by today. May you all have a great week ahead and happy planting sweet friends.