General Care Guidance for your Herb Garden
Herbs make just about any dish even better, and for good reason. They are easy to grow, they need little attention once established, and they add a burst of flavor to your dishes. Whether you're looking to plant thyme, oregano, chives, or mint—we've got you covered on basic herb care you should know before you get planting.
Healthy Plant Selection:
Look for healthy specimens, bright color, plenty of foliage, and absolutely not one bug or egg on it. Take the extra step and look for the healthiest herbs you can buy.
Choose Best Environment:
It is important that you know what type of environment—from sun to shade, and from moist to dry—your herb needs before placing it in the soil. The sun-loving herbs will become pale and weak from not enough bright sunlight every day. If you have neither too sunny or too shady an area, consider planting in pots that can be moved or rolled into the optimal lighting.
Best Soil Media:
Herbs grow best in soil that drains well and is rich in nutrition, and adding organic matter helps immensely with both of those characteristics.
Selection of Planter and Planting:
Most small annual herbs do well in pots as small as 8 inches in diameter, while larger perennials, like rosemary, may require a gallon pot or larger. Planting, transplanting and repotting do in late in evening and keep the herb in semi shade area for 1 to 2 days. At the time of planting, add one layer of gravels at the base for proper drainage.
Herbs' needs are minimal. Although easy to care for, they will be providing you with fresh bounty all season and do require a proper watering schedule in order to remain stress-free. Water your herbs in the early morning if possible; the water will soak further into the soil, without evaporation being an issue. Always water the soil around the herb—never water over the leaves. This only promotes mildew and disease.
Most herbs don’t need too much fertilization, but a shot or two during the growing season will do them a world of good. A simple liquid fertilizer should be enough to keep them happy.
One of the hardest things for a gardener to do is trim off healthy growth, especially when you are not going to cook with it—however, trimming herbs encourages growth. As an herb grows, it will eventually set flowers. Once it goes to flower, you will not get new foliage growth from that stem. Pruning herbs encourages new foliage growth, making them full and bushy.
Although herbs are notoriously hardy and resistant to bug and disease problems, these situations can still arise. Many times herb gardeners are afraid to use any means to protect their plants, but it does not have to be this way. There are many organic and homemade controls that are safe for edible plants like herbs. Organic gardening starts before the plant is even in place; beneficial insects and good soil all work towards a chemical-free herb garden.