May 11th 2010
I love cooking with herbs. I like opening my kitchen door and picking fresh ones as the need arises. Plus you can dry or freeze the extra herbs to get you through winter or bring a whole plant inside in a pot.
Not only are herbs super cheap to grow at home, most start easily from seeds. All you need is some potting soil, a pot, a few seeds, and a little bit of research. You can go to a website like herbcompanion.com to get info on some unusual herbs, planting suggestions, and recipes to use with your bounty. You can also take a close look at your seeds packet.
You can buy seeds online, at a garden store, or even at your local Whole Foods store. The trick is to really read the seed packet. It gives you a ton of information. When to plant, if it is a cool weather herb like cilantro or if it needs the heat of summer like basil does. You can also find out if it’s better to start inside before the last frost or if you can sow it straight into a pot. It tells you how many days it will be before the seeds should emerge after you plant them.
The packet is also where you can tell if it’s an annual or perennial. An annual only lives one season then goes to seed and dies. Basil and cilantro are annuals. Perennials come back year after year. Thyme, mint, sage, and rosemary are all perennials. You may think perennials are the way to go, but while they come back every year they are not totally maintenance free. You’ll need to divide them and put them into larger pots as they outgrow the one from last year. The bonus about dividing them is you have another plant to trade or give to a friend.
There are reasons to grow annuals and perennials. The reason to select an herb is grow what you like to eat!