Beginners Guide to Herb Gardening
Here’s my Super Easy Herb Gardening Beginners Guide. Don’t sweat gardening this year! Even beginners can grow herbs. Most of the herbs I’m going to talk about in my blog are weeds anyway, so how hard can it be? Right?!
First Do Some Planning
Many of them can grow very happy in containers on your deck. No matter if you live in the country or the suburbs or even in you apartment. Growing herbs is super easy, even your kids can help out.
Some herbs can grow quite large (around 6 feet) and can become stressed and stunted in a pot and you really don’t want unhappy herbs do you? The big secret to successful herb gardening is location, location, location. I don’t mean that you have to live in the best part of town you just have to put the herbs in the right spot in the garden.
The majority of herbs are happiest in full sun but only if your summer temperatures won’t regularly go higher than 90 degrees and if you live somewhere very hot your herbs may prefer a little early morning and evening shade. You could even plant your herbs somewhere they will get some light through the leaves of a tree.
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Give Them Some Room
You also need to give your herb plants plenty of space and as a rule of thumb you’ll need somewhere between one foot and 4 feet for each herb plant or say on container per plant.
- Rosemary, Mint, Sage, Oregano and Marjoram need around three to four feet each.
- Basil, Tarragon, Basil and Savory need a couple of feet for each plant.
- Chives, Cilantro, Parsley and Dill need only one foot each.
Soil Preparation for Herb Gardening
Good soil preparation is essential for growing healthy herbs. We like to put rocks in the bottom of containers, just enough to cover up the bottom. It really helps with the drainage. Add your potting soil and if you have compost now would be the time to add this and mix really good before you add to your containers. You are almost ready to plant your herbs. Make sure that you buy the strongest, healthiest herb plants you can find and don’t allow the soil to dry out. The majority of herbs need to be watered as soon as they become dry but be careful not to overwater your herb plants, this can be just as bad as not watering them enough.
Harvesting your Herbs
If you snip off around one third of the branches when the plant grows to around six or eight inches close to the intersection of the leaf you will encourage faster re-growth. Some plants grow new leaves out from their center (Parsley does this) in which case it may be necessary to remove old, dead branches to allow new growth from the plant center.
Herb gardening really is very easy and extremely rewarding, not only are you learning new things but you’re getting outside soaking up mother nature’s vitamin D, which we all need very much.
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Happy Herb Gardening!