Do you need a hobby?

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Everybody does right?  Well, I’m here to introduce you to the world of herb gardening.  Herb gardening is at least as old as the earliest civilizations.  In every age and in every part of the world herbs have been valued in cooking, medicine and the preparation of fragrances.

Okay, okay, that’s nice….but what is an herb?  An herb is a plant or plant part used as an ingredient for flavor, fragrance or healing.  Not to be confused for a spices, which are tropical in orgin.  With spices we use the plants root (ginger), fruits (vanilla pods), flowers (cloves), seeds (pepper), or bark (cinnamon).

Herbs do well in pots inside and out.  Herbs are easy to dry and chop up for your own dry herb needs.  Children like herbs a lot too.  If you are interested in any “kindergardening” ideas, and herb garden is a great one.  Herbs arouse kids’ curiosity and interest because they thoroughly engage the senses.  You touch the rosemary and your hand smells like rosemarry, the mint smells like mint, the snozzberries….any way, herbs are cool!

Culinary Herbs:

Basil                    Chives

Garlic                  Oregano

Rosemary           Dill

Mint                     Parsley

Sage                      Thyme

Tarragon              Summer savory

Fragrant Herbs:

Bergamot             Geranium

Iris Florentina     Lavender

Lemon Balm         Rose

Medicinal and Decorative Herbs:

Chamomile             Comfrey

Feverfew                 Wormwood

I started and herb garden last year.  It is located in my backyard, close to my creek and it receives mostly full sun.  Ideally, kitchen herb gardens are located close to  your kitchen as possible, for the convenience in cooking.  I started out with three rosemary plants (which have all died), some strawberries, mint, lemon balm, echinacea, and two kinds of oregano.   This season, my herb garden has gone through a massive construction, and if you live in the NWA, please come by and see it, it will be a force to be reckoned with!  Some new additions include chives, carrots, chard, onions, flat leafed parsley, garlic, lavender, two kinds of basil and some red curly lettuce.  I know what some of you may be thinking, some of those things are not herbs.  I know that, it’s an experiment.  I have the room and the will, you should give it a shot for yourself some time.  Now that I have my herb garden in some sort of shape I’m all excited.  It’s my pet this year.DSC_0102

These pictures were taken three days ago.  I have since pulled out more of  the rocks to create more patches for edibles.

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Strawberries

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Oregano

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Chives

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Mint galore, which I pulled out today and removed some of those rocks.  Don’t plant mint in the ground if you don’t want it to take over, because it will.  I don’t mind that, because it fills in gaps for me.

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Catnip, or Cat mint

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The “other” Oregano.  This is Greek Oregano, which is delicious!

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Lemon Balm

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Echinacea

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We find a lot of fossils here, so I like to incorporate them into the mix.

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More fossils.

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Still more…

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Red curly lettuce.

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Basil.

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Flat leaf parsley.

So yeah, Herb Gardening!  Go tell your friends.

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One response »

  1. Love this, Chapracki!! I had an old stump out front of the house we bought. I mounded a yard of organic dirt around that sucker and now I have great herbs to flavor every meal. It’s hard work to grow your own food, but an herb garden takes care of itself. Most importantly, it makes everything you cook gormet! Here in the Pacific NW taragon grows about 3 inches a day – it’s taking over!! Good thing it goes well with spring Chinook.

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