|Happy With Herbs
your interest, growing herbs is easy, and only a
little planning is all that is required in order
to maintain this perennial garden delight. Every
garden deserves an herb garden, even if this
means a few pots or tubs, or simply a window box
crammed with parsley, thyme and chives.
Although some herbs like
Rosemary or Fennell can grow happily for years,
most need to be renewed every 2-3 years, whilst
others like Sage or Dill can be grown from seed
or cuttings each year.
But how many herbs do I
require to start an herb garden? Some herbs like
fennel grow quite big 1500mm tall whereas parsley
or thyme will not grow taller than 150mm - 200mm.
Best to go for a head start, so buy some young
herb plants rather than seeds, at least that way
you won't end up with twenty of the one variety!
Pick a sunny site and start planting! For the
smaller varieties consider planting more than
one, but this will depend on personal choice.
So what do I use to stock my
new Herb garden? Well there's a huge range, but
select varieties you will use and enjoy. Here's a
list of the more popular varieties:
Parsley (available in
various varieties flat leaf and curly leaf) use
both types in a range of meat and vegetable
dishes. A small plant.
Thyme, fabulous aroma and used to flavour
almost any dish. A small plant.
Chives, a very small but simple to grow
herb. A real easy 'cut and come' plant, simply
use fresh chives to add a mild onion flavour to
food and salads
Mint - spearmint or Bowles mint (this
plant can be invasive, to control root
spread/growth, plant in a plastic tub in the
French Tarragon is a delicate upright
plant, but excellent for flavouring fish, salads
Green Sage, great with stuffings and Pasta
Fennell a very hardy large self seeding
plant. Used to flavour a wide range including
fish, eggs, cheese, vegetables etc. The leaves
and bulb have a lovely aniseed flavour which is
popular with many.
Lemon Balm used in iced drinks and hot
teas. Like mint, can spread rapidly so plant in a
container in the ground.
Green Golden Marjoram can be used
in meat stuffings.
Oregano, add to all Italian style sauces.
Dill, very popular herb with the leaves
and seeds used to flavour pickles, cucumber and
fish dishes. A tall plant with feather like
Chervil, a little similar to Parsley in
appearance with a delicate spicy fragrance and
used in soups, sauces and salads.
Basil or Sweet Basil, is a pleasant
smelling annual plant with a spicy taste. Great
with all tomatoe dishes.
Rosemary fantastic to flavour Lamb,
poultry, roasted or barbequed.
Bay with its aromatic leaves is a very
large plant and popular to add flavour to a
number of dishes including fish, soups and
especially French casseroles. Don't forget to
discard the leaves before serving food!
Sometimes the Herb garden
can look a little jaded over the winter months.
To avoid this why not add a little more structure
by planting the perimeter with Buxus
Sempervirens, which can be clipped tightly to
provide an all year round smart green planted
perimeter. Use Bay Leaf Standards or Mopheads to
add a formal look and visual interest at head
height. Plant you favourite herbs inside the
perimeter. Remember herbs are best grown in a
sunny location and if used in Kitchen, plant near
House. If space is limited, you can also plant
herbs in amongst the shrubs or in containers.
Plant in groups of 3-5 for added impact.
is principal of OWEN CHUBB GARDEN LANDSCAPES
LIMITED, an established and award winning garden
landscaping company based in Dublin, Ireland. The
company offers clients a complete landscaping
service including Garden Design, Construction