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Growing Herbs and Herb Gardening

Herbs have been used for centuries, and will continue to be used - all over the world, for the very simple reason, that they have known medical properties, and that generally, they have bought the human race this far in time. They have a variety of uses - culinary, medical and aromatherapy to name a few. There is a bit of mystique about Herbs. We will simply provide the facts.

Herb gardening is again gaining in popularity as it is realized that there is a low maintenance aspect to growing them, and also that many herbs can simply be grown as flowers! Yes! And herbs can be grown almost anywhere; garden; window box; container; windowsill; old boot; sun, shade, dry bank, boggy area.

They actually look nice - either as a self contained herb garden, or used in conjunction with shrubs and perennials. Many of the perennials we know are basically herbs anyway! Anyone can grow herbs. Kids especially, can be introduced into gardening by the simple act of sowing a dish of mustard or cress - and then being allowed to fill their sandwich with the resultant sprouts! It is possible to have herbs in growth for most of the year - flowering throughout the traditional gardening months of March through until October.

Types of Herbs

The Herb Garden at Wisley RHS

There are herbs for almost any situation in the garden, but a specific herb garden should not be overlooked. We will help you how to plan it and then go about it. Herbs are not the dowdy things of years ago. Many ornamental herbs exist - with good foliage effect. Some are evergreen, some deciduous, some herbaceous and some hardy perennial. There are a number of Herbs that can be grown for winter interest and use - as well as the aspect of drying herbs for winter use.

There are of course also annual, biennial and tender herbs. Add to that herbs can be grown indoors in the kitchen, and bought ready-grown from many supermarkets.

Advantages of growing Herbs

small informal herb garden with planted herb container

One big advantage of herb gardening is the fact that it is so easy to propagate herbs - even Parsley from seed! Herbs are almost universally easy to grow and propagate. They can be propagated from cuttings, seeds, divisions, bulbils, in water, in the green house or in a cold frame.

Herbs rarely suffer from the myriad of garden pests that are attracted to non-herb plants. Aphids are a bit of a problem on new shoots (of everything) but herbs are normally trouble-free. Perhaps that is why many 'herbal concoctions' were so successful in past years for controlling pests on other plants. Nowadays, it is illegal to make your own herbal mixture for pesticide use! It is not illegal to splatter your plants with many man-made chemicals of course!

Medicinal Herbs for wellness and healthy life!

Herbs are grown the world over for use in cooking and healthcare. They are also grown for their natural beauty! Each continent or country has its own different herbs, but almost always, they are an integral part of the cuisine, health and culture of that country. In the west, we seem to demand that everything that flavours comes out of a pot - rather than something that we put into a pot (cooking). There is herbal life beyond new potatoes with mint or lamb with mint sauce. Open your minds - go forward again to the past! You won't be disappointed.

Read about the History of Herbs

Let's get started on our Herb Garden

Herbs have a rightful place growing in the herbaceous border, for many of them are dual purpose - the Salvia - sage - group - and of course what herbaceous border would be complete without a few plants of Echinacea or Bergamots growing in them. The rose bed is a natural habitat for either low growing Thymes or lavenders. And any crack in a wall or paving is alright for low growing Thymes or other 'tread-able' treasures. If its 'aroma' that you are after, then brushing up against the curry plant - Helichrysum will take a lot of beating.

So! Let's go make a Herb Garden.


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