Herbs

Whether you grow your herbs in the garden, in troughs and pots or simply on the windowsill of your kitchen, herbs are definitely a plant to enjoy.  Some people prefer to grow them for medicinal purposes and other for culinary, whichever your preference is, we sell plenty of them here at the nursery, and they will become more widely available during the spring.

Grown for their fragrances or enhancing a variety of dishes, they are so versatile and of course absolutely adored by the bees.  There are many with beautiful flowers, and they can be dried for storing.  What reason can anyone find not to like herbs?

Being that there are so many varieties of them it might be easier to focus on the ones that are, or will be, available here at the nursery.  They are both evergreen and deciduous, and can be grown all year, though some many need some winter protection.

It has to be said that herbs date back centuries and are used worldwide.  Some are considered sacred in European pagan beliefs.  In Greek mythology, mistletoe is believed to be the Golden Bough of Aeneas, ancestor of the Romans.  The Norse God Baldr was apparently killed with mistletoe.  In Hinduism a form of basil called Tulsi is worshipped as a goddess for its medicinal value.

pineapple sageSage or Salvia comes from the Latin word “salvare” which means to heal.  Apparently, sage is a great herb to burn in order to cleanse the energy around you and your home.

St. Johns Wort, or Hypericum can be used to treat mild depression and sleep problems, and has been used for many years. Though, it should be mentioned, medical advice should be sought before taking it as it can have an effect when taken with other certain medicines.

The more common herbs grown for kitchen gardens are of course, Rosemary (which we have here at the nursery both in 9cm and 2 litre pots). Its evergreen leaves are heavily fragrant and can be used in recipes to enhance food or in pot pourri. Their beautiful blue flowers attract the bees, as also the butterflies.  This herb can be dried for storing for winter purposes.  Although being evergreen, it is available all year.

The common Sage although easy to grow, can be susceptible to mildew.  There are, however, remedies available at the nursery to help cure that!  Its distinct aroma cannot be mistaken, and the leaves are easy to dry for winter usage.  Once again, Sage is apparently used for several health benefits.

Coriander is usually grown here at the nursery during the spring. Whether you want it for its leaves, which are very fragrant, or for its seed, which give a very strong sweet flavour, it is a “must have” herb.

Basil is a tenderer herb, so needs protection from the cold.  Once again grown at the nursery in the spring, but you can keep these plants all year in a warm environment.  Its pungent leaves are used in many Italian dishes, and are good in salads.  It goes without saying that all these herbs attract wildlife.

Herb Mint GrapefruitWe have an amazing variety of Mint available, from the ordinary Tashkent for your new potatoes to chocolate mint. Not to forget to mention, apple, banana, pineapple, spearmint and many, many more.  Dead easy to grow and can be kept under control in containers.  Also used for many culinary purposes.

Lavender of course is a familiar favourite.  With its strong aroma and beautiful flowers is another “must” for planting in the garden or in containers and adored by the butterflies and bees. Lavender is most commonly used in aromatherapy.  The fragrance from the oils of the lavender plant are believed to help promote calm.  The earliest recorded use of lavender dates back to ancient Egypt, apparently playing a role in the mummification process!  Now though, it is supposed to purify the body and mind.  Also used in pot pourri and fragrances.  (I always remember my little Nan loving her lavender bath cubes!)

Thyme definitely deserves to be spoken about! With its pungent flavour and reasonably low growing habit, this is another “must” for gardens and pots. Thyme is full of vitamin C so is extremely good for the immune system.  It is also high in potassium for healthy cells and manganese for bone development. It is a good plant to dry for other uses, and is a good ingredient in many dishes.  The aromatic leaves fill the air on a warm day.

There are so many wonderful herbs, with so many amazing uses.  Whether you grow them for use in food, aromatherapy or because they attract wildlife, they are a plant for any garden.  There is nothing more delicious than the smell of herbs during the warmer months.  Definitely a plant to look forward to growing.  I actually have a herb trough at home, and enjoy picking the fresh leaves to use in cooking.  I believe it gives a nice, warm, homely flavour to food, and I’m looking forward to growing many more!…..

herbs growing in pots on a windowsill