Edible Gardening

The Virtue of Herbs


While visiting a friend’s garden, you brush against a rosemary bush; a comforting memory of your mother’s garden comes to mind. Suddenly, you remember her roasted chicken, seasoned with rosemary.

When planting an herb garden, you cultivate more than plants; you cultivate a legacy of memories. Herbs can be intermingled with your flowers and vegetables, or planted as dedicated herb gardens—either in the ground, in containers, and even window boxes.

Growing herbs knows no trend. Grown in both ancient and modern times, herbs are used for seasoning and scent, as well as, medicinal and housekeeping concoctions.

Herbs require little care, if given the right conditions. To begin, find a location in your garden that receives full sun. Most herbs need 6-8 hours of sun a day. Also herbs require well-drained soil; they don’t like to have their “feet” wet. Locating your herb garden within easy access ensures getting a snip from the garden will not likely be deterred.

While some herbs are annual or bi-annual, such as basil, dill, and parsley, many others are perennials, making it easy to create herb gardens with year round interest. Rosemary, lavender, chives, oregano, sage, and thyme not only add scent and seasoning to cooking, they are great plants to use in your garden, even if they are not used in the kitchen.

So, next time, when the late afternoon draws near and dinner is being prepared, gather a sprig of rosemary close at hand to enhance your dinner and build memories for generations to come.

Helen Yoest, owner of Gardening With Confidence™, is a wildlife gardener, garden coach and garden writer in Raleigh.

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