Jollof rice or chicken pepper soup?
You need spice!
However, buying all those spices could be burdensome and sometimes, to be honest, canned spices aren’t just as delicious as what comes from your own garden!
Just imagine, all you need to do is move around your own unique herb garden gardening shears in hand and returning to your kitchen with a basket full of your dream spices! (Amazing right?!)
A culinary herb garden is always for the win.
We have all the tips you need to get your culinary herb garden. Here you’ll find simple steps that’ll help you start out your own culinary herb garden; the one your heart’s been desiring!
Do Your Research
For reasons such as climate and soil types, certain types of herbs might not thrive well in your area. The first thing to do in order to get the best of your effort is to know the types of herbs that do grow well in your climate and area.
You should also understand that few herbs could become invasive in your area and should be prepared to curb them by getting pots for such.
Prepare your soil
The best herb garden starts with the quality of the soil. Herbs could be die-hard plants in terms of tenacity, however, they also need a well-prepared soil to thrive and perform their best. A healthy, loose or friable soil with good drainage is the best gift you can give to your herbs. Herbs have been naturally gifted with coarse roots that benefit a lot from chunky organic matter, and these chunky particles also help to provide the air spaces your herb plants needs, keeping them from drowning.
Mulching is also a great idea when you are trying to improve your soil and since it’s also more advisable to abstain from the use of chemical pesticides, and fertilizers, sticking to mulching is your best bet.
Pick a Spot
It won’t be so much fun if you had to take a sprint round your entire house to pick a branch of basil for that stew you’re frying, would it? The first thing to think of when planning your garden is its proximity to your kitchen. Your spot should also be a place your herbs can sunbathe for at least 6 hours in a day. To give your herbs the freedom to move around, you can decide to plant them in pots or you can try your windowsill if you are pressed for space, just make sure the spot you pick has enough sunlight.
Do the Planting
Have everything in order? it’s time to get digging (literarily). Keeping about 12-18 inches space between each herb (they tend to spread their branches as they grow.), dig holes that are wide enough to hold the root balls and put your seedling in the ground, pack them lightly with soil around the stem and you’ve performed the magic of planting!
Your herbs would not like it if you let the soil around them dry out. Spend quality time watering your herb garden to keep the soil evenly moist, doing this every day or two is advisable.
Watering herbs could be a little technical as you have to determinedly water near the base of the stems and not above the leaves as your leaves might get damaged.
There is also a right time to do the watering and that is early in the morning so the sun can work on drying it out before night so your herbs don’t begin to grow mould.
Harvest and prune
Once your herb plants become strong and sturdy, the leaves become plenty, this is the time to start your harvest. Regular harvest is best for herbs as this curbs flowering for a longer time.
As soon as your plants begin to flower, their energy is diverted to producing more flowers and not healthy leaves. Remove the flower buds as soon as you sight them.
Do your harvesting with clean sharp knives or pruning shears; be careful also with how you treat your herbs as they mostly go directly to your food without thorough cooking.
Pruning should be done as regularly as harvesting, to promote a healthy growth pattern. Overlooking this could mean your plants would grow leggy, tall and eventually produce seeds, all these have ways they affect the flavour of the leaves, that’s bad since the main reason you planted them was for their flavour not so they could propagate.
All these said, growing a herb garden is not rocket science, but like every other thing you’ve had to do in your life, you have to put your mind on getting it right from the start. Let us know the herb plant you’re thinking of planting in your home in the comment below.