France 5.2004 024When considering an herb garden bed or herb container, remember herbs require well-drained soil. Many herbs enjoy moisture. Lavender and rosemary prefer dry soils that drain quickly after watering or rain. Parsleys, dills and fennels are most vigorous when grown in loose soil that has been amended with organic matter or compost.

For a hearty and easy-to-maintain garden, group herbs by their moisture needs. For instance, plant moisture-loving basil, lemon balm, parsley, cilantro, monarda, tansy and nepeta in one area. Plant the drought-tolerant thymes, sages, lavenders, oreganos and rosemary in another area. I suggest planting any mint in a container – to keep it from overtaking the bed!

About once a month during the summer, cut herbs back to encourage new growth and maximize the leaf harvest. If possible, cut herbs in the morning after the dew has dried, but before the hot sun evaporates their essential oils.



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