Every gardener who likes to cook will grow his own garden herbs. There is no cheaper way to upgrade your food. Healthier and uncontaminated herbs cannot be found anywhere else.

The cultivation of annual garden herbs

Annual garden herbs have to be grown anew every year. If you tackle this “herb for herb” task, you will have to sacrifice a great deal of time until the first green is ready for processing on the kitchen table. If you plan the sowing of your annual garden herbs well in advance, you will save a lot of time. You could do this:

  1. You make a list of which annual herbs you want to plant for the next season.
  2. You determine the location for the herbs in the garden, the closer to the kitchen the better. The area must of course meet the requirements of the herbs on your list, that must be checked. If the theoretically nearest possible place for growing is not as suitable as one that is a little further away, you may choose the latter with a view to rich harvests.
  3. They write on your list when the herbs you have chosen should be sown. To save work, we recommend sowing directly in the bed, growing herbs would make the harvest possible a little earlier, but would increase the workload disproportionately. During this time, it is better to use preserved herbs from the previous year.

Here is an overview of the times when you can sow the individual herbs in spring:

  • Borage, chervil, caraway and parsley are quite insensitive to the cold. In mild areas, where there are no more severe frosts to fear, they are allowed to go straight into the garden bed as early as the beginning of March. If you live in a not so friendly region, just wait a little longer.
  • In April, dill, cress, coriander and summer savory can be sown in the garden bed.
  • The warmth-hungry basil and marjoram can be put into the ground at the beginning of May at the earliest, in somewhat rougher areas it is better after the ice saints, i.e. in mid-May. Basil is actually at home in tropical Africa and Asia, marjoram comes from Asia Minor and originally enjoyed the Mediterranean climate. Both herbs only germinate if they are sown in warm soil and then need a lot of solar heat to develop as much aroma as possible.

The varieties of annual garden herbs

The selection of (with us) annual or biennial garden herbs is enormous, even if you limit yourself to the most popular aromatic herbs, you will need quite a bit of space in the garden. Here is an overview of the most important annual herbs, with information on where to find them:

  • Basil (Ocimum basilicum): Good, nutrient-rich soil, sunny location.
  • Savory is annual as summer savory (Satureja hortensis): Relatively undemanding in terms of location, likes warm and loose, nutrient-rich soils, sensitive to frost.
  • Borage (Borago officinalis): No great demands on the soil quality, prefers a sunny location, but a lot of moisture in the soil.
  • Dill (Anethum graveolens): Does not tolerate compacted soils or waterlogging, likes medium-heavy, moist and warm soils with a high proportion of humus.
  • Chervil (Anthriscus cerefolium): Tolerates any normal soil with normal nutrient content, partial shade or sun, but no blazing midday sun.
  • Coriander (Coriandrum sativum): Claims similar to chervil.
  • Cress (Lepidium sativum): Grows on any soil that gives the cress roots support and can hold some moisture.
  • Marjoram (Origanum hortensis): We usually offer it as an annual garden variety that develops a particularly strong scent in a sunny location.

Two of our “kitchen herb stars” grow at two years of age:

  • Caraway (Carum carvi): Locations with sandy soils are more productive than those with loamy soils, but caraway grows almost everywhere.
  • Parsley (Petroselinum crispum): Nutritious, well-drained garden soil with a lot of moisture

The sowing of annual garden herbs

When the time comes to put the seeds in the soil, most annual garden herbs are all you have to do with scattering the seeds over the bed in the desired pattern. Because most of the herb seeds are light germs, they are sprinkled on and pressed a little, that’s it. Your patience could only be challenged by the fact that you often have to deal with tiny seeds that cannot be spread properly at all, but simply stick to your finger. Such seeds are easier to sow if you take a piece of paper with you bent in the middle, put the seeds in the crack and scatter them from there. With such tiny and of course very light seeds, a fine shower from the garden hose is recommended after sowing, otherwise you will be with the neighbor when the next gust of wind occurs.

Only a few herbs are dark germs that want to be covered with earth, but a layer of about one centimeter is sufficient for them, which you can do well if you make grooves that you then rake. Borage and coriander want to germinate in the dark.

In the case of dill, both are claimed on the Internet, but there is now a great deal of uncertainty there as to whether dill belongs to the light germs or dark germs. That could e.g. For example, it is because the dill seeds, like the seeds of most other plants, really don’t care whether they are called light germs or dark germs, because they pay attention to completely different requirements: To germinate, they need oxygen and moisture and a certain temperature, and when that happens, germination begins. If oxygen and warmth are definitely needed, it may be much more a matter of whether a seed gets a chance to receive it. That is why the tiniest seeds in particular are called light germs, with a few thousand seeds for 1 gram of seeds.

If you want to extract seeds from your own herbs, it is much more important that most of the herbs that have developed in our climatic zone (such as dill) belong to the cold germs. The seeds of these plants therefore have to go through a cold period before germination, a sprout inhibition “built in” by prudent nature. Otherwise the herbs would sprout in autumn – and then freeze to death miserably in winter, the next generation would have little chance of survival. For you, this means that you should allow the flowering dill to sow itself in the area in autumn, i.e. not collect the seeds and store them indoors over the winter. You do not need to worry about purchased seeds, the cold spell is replaced by an artificial treatment called stratification.

Caring for annual garden herbs

If everything runs normally from now on, your herbs should develop into harvestable plants, and you don’t really need a lot of care.

You should moisten the garden herbs as evenly as possible, the lovers of moist soils more than the Mediterranean herbs that are used to lean soils. When it comes to annual garden herbs, you are more likely to deal with moisture lovers, which thrive in beautiful, lush soils. But no garden herb would like to be drowned, if herbs are bathed in waterlogging, the seeds already tend to go moldy or rot.

The cultivation of perennial garden herbs

When choosing the areas for your perennial garden herbs, you should not only think about the proximity to the kitchen, but also a little about the garden design. These herbs often develop to a certain height and then look like small shrubs, or – in the case of the lovage, for example. B. – to expressive and really tall green plants. So, see what your perennial garden herb will look like once it grows, then choose a spot that has decorative value as well.

The sowing times (young plants can be planted around the same time) of the most important perennial garden herbs:

At the beginning of March peppermint can be sown in mild areas, if it gets cooler in your area, wait until April, then savory, lovage, rosemary, chives, celery, thyme and lemon balm can also be planted in the soil. The very warmth-hungry garden herbs such as tarragon, lavender, marjoram, oregano, sage and hyssop are only sown in May, in rough areas even not until mid-May, after the ice saints. They can only thrive if they are placed in warm soil.

The varieties of annual garden herbs and their locations

The following varieties are popular perennial herbs:

  • Winter savory savory (Satureja montana)
  • Estragon (Artemisia dracunculus)
  • Lavender (Lavandula officinalis)
  • Lovage or Maggi herb (Levisticum officinale)
  • Marjoram (Origanum majorana) in the perennial form of the winter majorana, at least two years old, but less strong in its fragrance, you can only get good quality here in warm climates.
  • Oregano (Origanum vulgare)
  • Pfefferminze (Mentha x piperita)
  • Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
  • Sage (Salvia officinalis)
  • Chives (Allium schoenoprasum)
  • Schnittsellerie (Apium graveolens)
  • Thymian (Thymus vulgaris)
  • Ysop (Hyssopus officinalis)
  • Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)

Most of them belong to the herbs from southern areas, such as savory, lavender, lovage, winter majora, oregano, rosemary, sage, thyme and hyssop, for example. B. who need more lean soil and sun. The more sun these herbs get, the more aroma they can develop.

Tarragon also likes sun, but also a lot of nutrients, chives prefer loose, nutrient-rich and moist soil, lemon balm also likes to grow in a damp zone, celery simply in good soil, as well as peppermint and lovage, which should be given a lot of space because they are quite large or spread widely.

Cultivation and care of perennial garden herbs

Most perennial garden herbs are semi-shrubs that should be harvested regularly because otherwise they tend to lignify right down to the outer shoots.

All herbs can be grown from seeds, or you can buy young plants in spring, a large selection of which is often offered at weekly markets or in garden centers.

Most perennial garden herbs are quite undemanding and do not need a lot of care if the location is right. They must not be watered too vigorously and should be cut back vigorously in spring so that they sprout fresh. Perennial garden herbs are usually easy to propagate by dividing them or by cuttings.

With a little planning, it is not rocket science to bring in a rich harvest of garden herbs in the garden. In the case of annual garden herbs, above all you need a good perspective, for perennial garden herbs a closer look at the location is recommended, the maintenance itself is pleasantly limited in terms of workload.

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