Always have fresh herbs available? A real luxury that can be realized with a herb spiral on a really small piece of garden soil. Before starting the system and building a herb spiral, thorough planning of the herb spiral is recommended, precisely because the aim is to gather as many beneficial plants as possible in the smallest space.

The right place

The herb spiral should give you the opportunity to enrich as many dishes as possible with freshly harvested herbs full of healthy and flavor-enhancing ingredients. Giving the hand should really be taken literally here, because the position of the herb spiral and the distance from the kitchen influence to a degree that should not be underestimated whether there will really be more herbs in your food after the herb spiral has been erected. If you have to walk all the way to the back of the garden just to harvest some chives, you often won’t do it. If it’s raining, for example, or if you’re expecting a call but the cordless phone in the back yard has lost signal.

The perfect place for the herb spiral is therefore very close to the kitchen, i.e. as close as possible to the front door. However, not so close that you can reach your herb bed very quickly, but unfortunately the herbs only appear very sparsely because they do not feel comfortable in this location. Therefore, you should first of all deal with which herbs you would like to equip the herb spiral with and deal with the location requirements of these herbs. The next step is to check how many of these conditions you can best meet and how close to the house. If you want to plant as many different herbs as possible, the space for the herb spiral should be e.g. B. offer full sun, but also shade and are also sheltered from the wind.

Alignment and preparation of the herbal spiral

At some point a compromise is found and the place for the herb spiral is fixed. Then you can set the alignment. It would be ideal if the lowest point, i.e. the end of the herb spiral, was to the south.

Then you can start preparing. During your planning, you already got an idea of ​​how big your herb spiral needs to be so that there is room for all the herbs you want. Now you finally determine the size, with a wooden stake to which a string is attached with a stick at the front end. Place the wooden peg in the middle of the future spiral, use a piece of string and a pointer to draw a circle around it with the desired diameter, and mark the edge with other sticks. Probably the smallest meaningful diameter of a herb spiral is 2.50 meters. Now you can calculate the area of ​​a circle and the perimeter. Then you have a few measurements at hand, with which you can go to the nearest hardware store.

The building material for the herbal spiral

Even if a herbal spiral initially seems like a really small piece of earth that is to be designed here, you do not need that little material. If your herb spiral z. B. should have a diameter of 3 meters, that is a circular area of ​​over 7 square meters and a circumference of just over 9 meters. You need the following material to build your herb spiral:

  • Enough gravel to cover the entire area of ​​the circle with a drainage layer about 25 cm thick.
  • Sufficient gravel, coarser, edged stones to pile up a hill in the middle of the herb spiral.
    • for the hill of a spiral of 3 m diameter you need several wheelbarrows of crushed stone.
  • For the spiral wall you need weather-resistant bricks or clinker, natural stones or concrete blocks.
    • With a spiral of 3 m, you not only build a circle of a good 9 meters, but also the spiral inwards, so buy enough stones.
  • You will also need compost, sand and garden soil
    • here the soil from the excavation can be included.
  • If your herb spiral is to be crowned by a pond zone, you will need pond liner or a pond basin.

Of course, you don’t necessarily have to get the material from the hardware store if you have any old bricks left over. You can also build the mound out of rubble, quarry stones or similar (pollutant-free) materials.

building and construction

The herb spiral creates a bed that rises up from the ground. During the construction of the spiral wall, which is spiraling upwards, several construction steps merge into one another. This is best explained in a step-by-step guide:

  • first dig out a layer of earth about 40 cm deep on the entire marked out circle area
  • The pond zone is placed at the foot, i.e. at the large, flat opening of the spiral
    • Dig the pond pit now as well
    • lay them out with pond liner or insert the pond basin
  • then fill up the large herb spiral lifted out with gravel to a good half
    • this is the drainage layer that prevents waterlogging
  • Now heap up a preliminary mound, which is highest in the middle of the spiral
  • now “wall” hills

This is the place where you have to adapt several construction steps to each other and possibly repeat them:

  • first mark the path of the spiral wall with sand on a temporary hill
  • Then start piling up the wall at the foot of the spiral or at the edge of the pond
  • Lay out the base of the wall that defines the path of the spiral wall that narrows inwards in a snail shape
  • make sure you choose the largest stones for the base
  • Now build up the wall
    • at the bottom of the spiral it stays very low, inward it gets higher and higher and contains more and more earth
  • At the same time cover mounds of rubble with a thick layer of soil in which the herbs can grow
  • mix three different soil mixtures beforehand
    • the largest heap with garden soil and compost
  • next pile smaller and mix with more sand
  • then a very small heap of very sandy earth mixture
  • largest pile contains the nutrient-rich soil for the lower, wide area of ​​the spiral
  • the next, the more nutrient-poor soil for the middle area
  • The Mediterranean zone is located at the top of the spiral
    • apply sandy lean earth here

So you stack up a piece of wall, fill in the appropriate soil mix, stack up the next piece, give soil, etc. You’ll always have to refill the lower sections you just left. In this way you “screw” your way up slowly. The wall should slope inward slightly. This is especially important for stability as it gets higher towards the top of the spiral.

By the way, if you form a wall of evenly shaped bricks or concrete blocks that grows geometrically upwards and spiraling, you can save yourself the game of alternately building walls and applying soil: simply pull up your wall and then fill in the various soil mixtures. For such a herb spiral, the wall could even be properly connected with mortar. This will then become a very stable herb spiral, but it is no longer a construct that is suitable for a natural garden.

The basic arrangement of herbs

Before you can plant herbs, you still need a little patience. You should even give the soil a few weeks to settle if possible. In any case, it should get several downpours, after which you check the layers of soil and top up if necessary. If it doesn’t rain for weeks, so does the garden hose. If you are a bit late with your herb spiral: Don’t get angry, so much the better if the herb spiral is allowed to “sag” over the winter! Depending on the region, you can use the first frost-resistant herbs from around mid-March.

You can use this time to think about how you want to arrange the herbs within the herb spiral. Again, you have the choice of neat rows or looser grouping. This decision is part of whether your herb spiral looks more “tidy” or more “wildly natural”. However, with the “wild and natural” variant, you have to remember that it only makes sense if you know your herbs really well. Or if you work with weatherproof plant labels from the outset.

The pond is completed shortly before planting. The pit with pond basin or liner is filled with large stones or gravel to about 10 centimeters. Then add 5 to 10 cm of water to the “herb pond”. The herbs that grow in the water don’t need more.

Site requirements of different herbs

You have different planting zones available in your herb spiral: Below (at the pond) the most nutrient-rich and moist zone. In the middle a zone with not too nutrient-rich, “normal” soil and above the Mediterranean zone with pronounced poor soil. Here is an overview of which herbs feel good where:

  • In the pond zone e.g. B. watercress and water mint
  • in a fairly humid and nutrient-rich zone, e.g. B. Chives, parsley and lemon balm
  • If a shady spot is available, that’s a good spot for wild garlic and comfrey
  • Lovage and peppermint, which have conquering roots, fit on the outer edge
  • Followed by basil, dill, or celery stalks that thrive in good, nutrient-rich soil
  • Plant the middle zone with normal soil with chamomile, chervil, coriander and caraway
    • Tarragon, fennel and sweet umbel also feel at home here
  • Mediterranean zone reserved for herbs native to the south, such as savory, marjoram, oregano, rosemary, sage, thyme and hyssop
  • Crown the edge of the spiral with lavender at the top

If you buy the herbs in a specialist shop and not in a discounter and treat them to a little organic fertilizer in the spring, after planting a herb spiral you will have fresh herbs full of healthy ingredients available almost all year round – or all year round, if Put the not sure hardy candidates in pots in the spiral and overwinter indoors.

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