Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Tips for Nurturing A Herb Garden
Whether you are a gourmet chef or a throw-it-together at the last minute mom, there is no arguing that fresh herbs make a meal better. They add flavor, nutrition and color to any meal that your prepare in your kitchen and serve to your family and friends. Anyone who has strolled the aisles of a typical grocery store, or gasped at prices in a natural foods outlet, can tell you that herbs are not cheap. They also do not last long after they are picked. This makes growing your own herbs at home a desirable option. Read here about how to get started and what techniques to employ for successful herb gardening.
The very first and crucial thing to do when planning an herb garden is to choose the location. This is something that your local Aberdeen gardening services provider can definitely help you with. Depending on how ambitious you are, it can be a large dedicated garden of its own, or it can be a simple container garden on your patio. The important thing is to make sure that it has adequate sunlight and shade, and that it is accessible to you at all times. Particularly in the winter months, you want to have the plants close at hand. You may even want to consider growing some smaller herbs in clay pots on your windowsills inside.
Choosing which herbs to plant comes down to three things: preference, availability and care. You obviously will want to plant herbs that you enjoy eating and that are healthy additions to meals for your family. Think about flavors that you like and that will enhance the dishes you prepare often. Then check to see if these herbs are readily available in local nurseries, and whether they are recommended for your specific climate zone. Nothing leads to failure faster than choosing herbs that are unsuitable for your locale. Finally, take into consideration the amount of care needed for each type of herb, and whether you have to time to devote to it. You may also want to check the prices in grocery stores for purchasing certain herbs and then decide how much money you could save by growing those particular ones yourself.
Just planting and watering a herb garden is generally not enough to make it successful. You will need to do some research on what kind of fertilizers are good for herbs and whether plant foods are recommended for each varietal you plant. This may sound like a lot of work, but remember that you only have to do this research once, and you only have to prep the soil in the beginning. You will then be knowledgeable enough about the process that you can use the insights you gain in maintaining the garden for the long term.
You want to control pests in your herb garden, but fortunately this is much easier than with other types of edible plants. Many insects are naturally repelled by herbs and will stay away from them anyway. In fact, natural gardening experts often recommend planting herbs in the middle of standard vegetable gardens to thwart the efforts of invaders. If you do develop problems with pest, use only chemical-free deterrents. Remember that you will be eating what your herbs are treated with.
Fresh herbs are considered a luxury, but they can now become a standard part of everyday life. Use these tips to improve your meals and increase good health.