Greetings faithful readers! It’s October and I can’t remember the last time I wrote a post. I always have high intentions at the beginning of the summer, then summer takes over, the garden gets out of hand and life just flies by (cause we are having so much fun)!
This past summer the garden did…OK. Everything I planted grew, but the harvest was minimum and not very exciting. However, my new herb garden did AMAZING! At first I thought the herbs would never grow, but as soon as the summer heated up they were happy as can be!
Here are some tips & tricks that worked for us this year. Hopefully you will be able to start enjoying your own herbs year round!
How to GROW Herbs:
We chose to plant in large planters from COSTCO, filled with organic potting soil. In years past we purchased plants from a local nursery, but this year we started from seed. I tried to start the seeds indoors, but they burned out when transplanted outside. I replanted directly outdoors and viola!
Containers work best to control the herbs that are invasive, like mint, from taking over your entire garden. Drill holes in the bottom of your planters to prevent drowning your plants during a hard rain.
Plant herbs with their companion herb to save space and encourage growth:
- Parsley, Rosemary & Thyme
- Basil & Oregano
- Mint (always alone)
- Lemon Balm & Lavendar
Make sure the herbs get plenty of sunshine, without the chance of being burned out. I have found that putting herbs on a patio that gets direct sunlight will dry them out and kill them, try to find a full sun spot that also has a breeze passing through. We put ours along the fence and that worked well. Remember to water your planters often, but don’t drown them.
During the summer, we enjoyed picking fresh herbs for cooking, making tea, adding to animal feed , using herbs to freshen up animal pens and to keep flies away.
Now that the growing season is over, it’s time to save the remaining herbs to use for the rest of the year.
How to Save Herbs:
First, cut off bunches of each herb and tie together at the bottom.
Find a dry place indoors to hang the herbs upside down to dry. I hang ours from our pots & pans rack which hangs over our sink.
There are several ways to save your herbs once they are completely dry. Remember to only save the leaves, not the stem or flowers.
- Grind the dried leaves with a Morter & Pestol.
- Grind the dried leaves in a food processor or coffee grinder.
- Save the herbs whole and grind when needed. (I like to save dill whole since most recipes call for a “sprig” of dill).
Lastly, pick out pretty jars, fill up with herbs, label and store! Now it’s time to start making soups, stews and more (using your dried herbs or course)!
I hope you found this info helpful. If you have any tips or tricks regarding herbs, please share!
🙂 Mama Nice
Tagged: backyard garden, garden, growing herbs, herbs, homesteading, saving herbs
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