How to Grow a Herb Garden the Easy way at Home
I tried to rock a herb garden once. Well, a few herb pots on my balcony.
My partner Gavin and I had delusions of grandeur that we’d be living off the land in a matter of days after planting the herbs. Cut to three weeks down the track and everything was dead. Including my hope for a country lifestyle in the inner city, where the smell of roast lamb and rosemary wafted about the place every Sunday afternoon.
So what gives when it comes to herb gardens, how do you look after them and how can they look more amazing than my two pots on the balcony?
Thankfully I have garden guru Matt Leacy from Landart Landscapes on hand, who in this post will bestow some of his wisdom on us regarding all things herb gardens and how to rock them at home (with some clever small garden ideas thrown in for free). Take it away Matt!
How to Grow a Herb Garden the Easy way
Let’s talk about Taste
It is the perfect time to plant some fast growing flavours. Classic culinary herbs and vegies are easy to grow and essential for those winter suppers. You can spice up your seafood with coriander and chives, whilst rosemary, thyme and oregano will have you lusting for lamb and succulent roasts.
Rocket, spinach, kale, cherry tomatoes, carrots and iceberg lettuce are easy vegies to grow and can be made into superb side dishes to accompany your meals.
When it comes to the appearance of your garden, be inventive and resourceful. Adding herbs to your back yard is the perfect opportunity to add dimension and character to your house – while also being equally as perfect for those with limited space. Herbs don’t have to hide in the corner, show off your green thumb!
A feature wall can add the necessary flare to a dull garden in need of a facelift. Attach planter boxes with herbs in them to a hardwood wall to produce a picturesque functional artwork. Different coloured timbers can be implemented to give a different feel to your garden. For example bleached or natural wood can create a coastal feel whereas colours such as black or grey can modernise any space.
White washed timber, old tins and barrels and budding herbs can provide a modern take on the nostalgic nuances of Nan’s backyard. Herbs such as lavender, oregano, rosemary and thyme will provide you with a wonderfully fragrant garden. Use an old barrel to plant numerous herbs, starting from the taller ones in the middle and planting outwards as a vintage and rustic feature of your space.
If you have a small garden, the last thing you want to do is to make it look smaller. As great visual assets to a garden, cascading constructs are the best way around this. Stack pots against a wall by starting with the largest at the bottom and gradually getting smaller as you reach the top. This takes up minimum space whilst being an eye catching feature. Tiered and raised garden beds surrounding the space also achieve this; rosemary and lavender are great for hedging.
Keep your herbs happy
You should plant your lettuce from seed as they are fast growing and it is more economical.
Take note of the end product of your herbs to ensure optimal appearance for the finished garden. Some herbs are good for background shrubbery, whereas others are good for pops of colour and should be placed in the foreground. Throw in a curry plant for the silver foliage and colour contrast.
Make sure you don’t overwater, overfeed or overplant your herbs. It is imperative that when planted in smaller containers such as planter boxes, tins, baskets or smaller pots, you plant one plant per container so that the roots don’t compete.
Larger containers allow you to plant upwards of 5 species of herb. Most herbs benefit from at least 5 hours of sunlight a day so plant them somewhere that they can soak up the rays. Apart from that they are relatively low maintenance and only require daily watering and occasional fertilising.
Follow these small garden ideas and herb planting tips and you will have excellent herbs and an excellent looking garden in approximately 3-4 weeks.