A herb garden is easy to make and offers many benefits. You can make a herb garden in your outdoor space, and you can even have one if you live in an apartment. Herb is any kind of plant used for food, medicine, or perfume.
Indoor herb garden. Photo source: bonnieplants
Medicine herbs. Although it is healthier to use plants in treating different diseases, it is good to know that some of them are powerful enough to react with medications. It is recommended to speak with a qualified practitioner for precise advice. Among the numerous medicine herbs you can grow in your garden are: rosemary, valerian, echinacea, nettle, St. John’s-wort, lavender, lemon balm, chamomile, calendula, sage, ginseng and many others.
Culinary herbs. Among the easiest to grow are: basil, lovage, oregano, thyme, chives, sage, tarragon etc.
Tips & Tricks
1. Provide conditions similar to the originating region
Most herbs are native to the Mediterranean. That means they need plenty of sunlight, a soil that drains well and moderate temperatures. Also, in general herbs love humid air, but not soggy soil. If you have an indoor herb garden then you can resolve this paradox very simple. You can put your pots on a tray of pebbles and fill it with water.
Window herb garden. Photo source: gardeningclan
2. Seedlings are more successful than seeds
Although seeds are less expensive, very often it doesn’t make through the first weeks. Seedling is a better solution.
3. Choose the proper type of herb garden
For indoor you can use herbs that can grow in a variety of containers. For outdoor spaces you can decide to have square foot garden, raised beds, a ladder garden, a wagon wheel type etc. It is important to be informed what kind of space every herb needs. For example: yarrow, valerian, mullein leaf, burdock and marshmallow grow pretty big, so they need more space.
Raised bed herb garden. Photo source: vithouse
Ladder herb garden. Photo source: suttons
Square foot garden are small and intensively planted. Photo source: twobrosgardening
4. Use watering techniques
A useful and cost effective technique is the soaker hose. This type of hose is set on timers allowing the water to be slowly released. The herbs will have water when they need and in the proper quantities.
5. Group the plants on categories
Some herbs need more water, other less. It is better to water them separately. For example rosemary needs very less water, but a mint plant needs a lot of water.
Jekka’s Herb Farm, England. Photo source: gardenvisit
6. Cut early and often
It is good to cut the plants just above few growing leaves. In this way the originally trimmed stem will no longer grow, but new stems will grow around the original cutting.
7. Pick up the leaves
The proper time to pick leaves is in the morning before the heat sets in.When you want to use your herbs, be sure you take it from the right place. Pick off the top leaves and let the large ones around the bottom of the plant. The large leaves are like a solar panel that helps the plant to grow.
8. Separate the invasive herbs
If you have an outdoor herb garden put the invasive herbs in separate pots. Then bury the pots in the ground. In USA, the St. John’s-wort is renowned to be invasive. Even oregano and mint have this reputation.
With the proper care, a herb garden will provide you a wonderful source of health and satisfaction.