No matter whether salad, sauce or dip – herbs give a sunny, tasty and intensive flavour to nearly every meal. We reveal six tips on how to plant, care and harvest herbs.
You can cultivate herbs nearly everywhere: in pots on the window-sill, in flower-boxes on the balcony or just outside in the kitchen garden. A special eye catcher is the herbal spiral. It does not only look good, but also provides optimal conditions for various herbs within a small place. You can sow herbs like parsley, dill, chive or basil. Just spread a thin layer of the seeds on some soil and keep this area moist so that the seeds are able to germ.
A more convenient opportunity to have herbs at home is to buy them in the supermarket. Nearly every supermarket offers herbs in pots. If you decide to buy such a herb pot, it is important to repot the plant in a bigger pot at home. This way, you make sure that the plant has enough space to spread out.
In order that the herbs grow and thrive, you have to water them regularly. If you have preferences for Mediterranean herbs like thyme, marjoram, oregano and rosemary you don´t have to water them much because they are accustomed to poor and dry soil. In contrast, chive, melissa, parsley and tarragon are very thirsty and need a lot of water.
In both cases waterlogging should be avoided.
In general, fertilizer should be used very economical. In case you fertilize too frequently, some changes in flavour might occur. Should you want to fertilize your herbs, you can do this once a month.
Harvesting herbs is easy. For most herbs you can only pick the leaves. This applies, for example, to basil and wild garlic. You can remove and use entire twigs on melissa, peppermint and tarragon. This works best when using a sharp knife or herb scissors. Keep in mind to harvest only the amount of herbs which you can use afterwards.
You can store herbs in two easy ways: Either you dry them or you freeze them. If you decide to dry the herbs, just place them at a warm and shady place for two weeks. After this time you store the herbs in glasses with lids. If you want to freeze them, you need to clean the herbs first. Afterwards, chop the herbs very fine and put them in freezing boxes. Please check that you use a single glass or box for every herbs species.
Both storage options ensure that herbs keep valuable aromas and ethereal oil.