If you like to cook and want to start using more fresh ingredients then herbs are a great place to start.
You can buy small plants from the garden centre and either keep them on a sunny windowsill in your kitchen or plant them out in the garden. Either way you’ll love having fresh herbs on hand to add to your recipes.
These three herbs are a great place to start if you’d like to create your own mini herb garden.
Basil is a great plant to start with if you want to build your own little herb garden.
It does really well in a plant pot on a sunny windowsill but will also thrive planted outside in your garden. If you can, try planting it alongside some tomato plants. Apparently doing this can improve the taste of your tomatoes!
Once your plant is growing well you can harvest the leaves by snipping a stem just above the point where two large leaves meet. Try to do this before the plant flowers, otherwise you can just pinch off the parts of the plant that start to flower. Getting rid of the flowers makes the plant put all its energy into growing the leaves that we want.
Basil is a great herb to have on hand ready to use in salads, sandwiches and paninis, on pizza and in tomato sauces. It’s also amazing to have around for making your own fresh pesto.
Like basil, rosemary needs a lot of sunlight to grow well, so keep it on a sunny windowsill or plant it out in the garden.
You also need to make sure that it can drain well if you’re growing it in a plant pot. And general advice is to water it when the top of the soil starts to feel dry, but without letting it dry out completely.
Rosemary is perfect for making infused oils and flavoured butter to use in cooking. It’s also adds amazing flavour to roast potatoes and is great in simple dishes like baked Camembert.
Thyme is a Mediterranean plant that does well in dry, sunny conditions.
It’s a low-growing plant and tends to spread out quite well, so find a warm spot in the garden with space for it to grow in to. Thyme tends to grow well when it’s planted along with strawberry and tomato plants.
For the best flavour you should harvest the thyme just before the plant flowers. It’s worth keeping in mind that the more you trim a thyme plant, the more it grows. Regularly cutting the plant back will also help to encourage a more rounded shape.
Thyme goes really nicely with lemon to add flavour to a roast chicken. It’s also great with roasted potatoes and carrots.
This brilliant infographic from Trago has great advice on the best time of year to plant and harvest these herbs and a few others that you might want to add to your herb garden.
You can pop over to their website for even more information on growing herbs, along with other great gardening tips to help get your garden growing beautifully.
Disclaimer: this is a collaborative post