Herb’s Place

A new little spot was created in the trellis garden and called Herb’s Place. I don’t know if the mail carrier will drop by with any mail, but there are going to be lots of herbs.

Herb's Place at craftygardener.ca

An old mailbox was painted and decoupaged to add to this area. I just love whimsy in the garden. On various trips to garden centres, farm stands and other gardens I’ve noticed the groupings of herbs growing happily. I took the ideas I saw and made them my own by changing them up a bit and creating another garden area.

growing basil at craftygardener.ca

In the mailbox is a pot of basil, and there is also feverfew, oregano, parsley, chives, garlic chives and dill growing in this area. Did you know you can grow more basil plants with cuttings that have been rooted in water. Once the roots are a few cm long you can transplant it into a pot, but be sure to keep the water changed every few days. There are lots of things you can do with basil:

  • snip off the leaves and add to salads
  • add it as a topping to homemade pizza
  • add it to sauces, especially pasta sauce
  • use as a garnish
  • make pesto

Naturally you should wash all basil well in cold water before using. Tearing instead of chopping gives more flavour. You can even freeze basil leaves for use in the winter months.

growing parsley at craftygardener.ca

Parsley comes in many cultivators, curled, common and flat/Italian are some of them. The root, seeds, and leaves are edible. It can be used as:

  • a garnish
  • a breath freshener
  • added to a marinade
  • added to a salad
  • add to homemade dressings
  • added to pesto
  • parsley sauce (used in pie & mash shops in the past)
  • add chopped to all sorts of recipes
  • freezes well for winter use
caterpillars of the swallowtail butterfly at craftygardener.ca

I love parsley in the garden as it also attracts the swallowtail butterflies, which lay caterpillars which hatch into more butterflies. Be sure to check the parsley you pick to be sure there isn’t a caterpillar on it. Of course those caterpillars will munch the leaves.

chives in bloom at craftygardener.ca

I’ve got chives at Herb’s Place too, including garlic chives. The photo below is from the fall when the garlic chives bloom and produce oodles and oodles of seeds.

garlic chives at craftygardener.ca

Both are edible, and delicious washed and chopped and added to salads. Garlic chives have flat leaves while regular chives have rounded/tubular and hollow leaves (just in case you don’t know the difference)

garlic chives at craftygardener.ca

Regular chives have mauve flowers in spring and garlic chives have white flowers in early fall. Both types of chives will drop seeds and produce prolifically. If you don’t want the plants to spread, just snip off the spent blooms before the seeds set and drop. Chives are early growers in the spring and that is a good time to divide the clumps. I frequently give these plants away as after awhile you only need so many in the garden.

growing mint at craftygardener.ca

Mint grows at Herb’s Place too and last year I contained it in an old sink as it can be a very invasive plant. I still find it popping up in other parts of the garden where it grew a long time ago. Some uses for mint are:

  • added to salads
  • dried for making tea
  • add leaves to yogurt and smoothies
  • make mint sauce
  • add to pesto
  • add to water to make a refreshing drink
  • freeze in ice cubes

I have spearmint, peppermint and chocolate mint but it also comes in all sorts of other varieties. There is also pineapple, lemon, lavender and of course cat mint!

I use mint leaves frozen in ice cubes to add to water, cold or boiling, for a refreshing drink.

Sage and lavender haven’t moved into Herb’s Place yet, but they will be moving in the fall.

Although not an herb, scarlet runner beans grow in bottomless pots up a trellis at the back of Herb’s Place. I’ve been growing these for years in my garden, since 1981 to be exact. My original seeds came from my Uncle Joe’s garden in England and it is my way of remembering him each year with plants that are descendants from those original seeds.

Garden areas

What herbs do you grow in your garden?

garden line

18 Responses

  1. Linda

    I love Herbs place what a fun idea, I tend to stick to chives, parsley, rosemary, spearmint, I introduced a pineapple mint last year but it’s quite mild compared to the spearmint, I like both added to salads, I grow coriander in the summer but for some reason this year it hasn’t grown well at all and the parsley isn’t that good either I’m blaming it on the weather cold, rain and wind one day then red hot the next. Have a great weekend. 🙂 xx

    • Crafty Gardener

      I haven’t tried pineapple mint, love peppermint and spearmint. I just picked a few of each, plus some oregano, basil and parsley leaves to add to my salad tonight. Enjoy the weekend.

  2. hetty gruener

    Love Herb’s Place! I have a few herbs this year. In previous years I have had many more. Spearmint has invaded my garden from my neighbour’s garden. I also have a lot of catnip coming up everywhere. I have basil, oregano, chives, dill and lovage. My lavender didn’t come back this spring. I have some peppermint in a pot, so it can’t grow everywhere. One interesting herb that I have is Sweet Cicely. I bought it many years ago from the Scarborough Horticultural Society. I love it! I am going to try your tip for rooting basil,.

    • Crafty Gardener

      All mints are invasive, that is why I’m trying it in an old metal sink this year, seems to do doing okay but not as big and bushy as in the ground. We have a huge area of catnip at the very back of the garden which I let grow for the wild cats to enjoy. I’ve never tried sweet cicely, will check into that one. Have a good weekend.

  3. Vondean Erickson

    Your Herb garden was so interesting. I shared it with my son Tim who is a great cook. I know he will use some of your hints. I love the mint and remember my mother growing it and when we walked through her garden she would take a piece and chew it. Also I have not seen a caterpillar like the one you showed for years. Brought so many memories of when we worked in the garden back home. You have a beautiful garden and yard. I miss the garden back home but am slowly getting one started here.
    ***edited to remove some personal stuff

  4. abasozora

    it’s nice to have a herbal place we can use for our own needs without having to buy out there, greetings from me in Indonesia

  5. Veronica Lee

    Your herb garden is so lovely!
    How awesome that you can just walk into the garden and pick whatever you need!

    • Crafty Gardener

      I love popping out to pick a few leaves from each herb to add to a salad, or just to munch on. Thanks for visiting, have a lovely day.

  6. Myrtle

    I love your Herb’s Place Linda. I was late this year so all I have is sweet basil and I have it in a pot in the house so I remember to use it. I often take a leaf and chew it but is a good idea to rinse your mouth after or someone will bits of the leaf on your teeth. Next year I think I will grow more spices outside the sunroom close to the sunroom door. I can then pop out and pick what I want. thanks, Linda for the reminder of what some herbs are good with.

    • Crafty Gardener

      Hi Myrt, the heat continues for a few more days, so I spend my time early in the morning outside. I love picking a few leaves from the herbs for salads or to munch on. Basil is good to grow inside too as are other herbs, that way you can have fresh herbs in the winter. Have a good day.

  7. Margy

    Fresh herbs are so great to use, but also beautiful in the garden. You really know how to maximize both purposes. – Margy

    • Crafty Gardener

      I do let several bits of herbs flower so the insects can enjoy them too. Plus I love the scent they give off. Hoping you will be able to enjoy your garden soon.

  8. Joy

    Hello Linda !
    I think Herb’s Place is wonderful ! … I grow parsley and rosemary in containers on the deck .. I usually grow dill as well, but for what ever reason there was no dill to be had in Kingston this year, which was really disappointing because I too love the “cats” and dill was a favorite for them to lay eggs and develop the whole life cycle with Black Swallowtails. .. I have a big container of parsley so I am hoping just maybe it will happen with it. I have lots of lavender in the garden .. I love brushing past it on the pathway, there is nothing like lavender eh ?
    The heat dial is turned way up and is on going for a while yet .. not enough rain by any measure so I am thankful for the sprinkler system otherwise I would have no gardens.
    I think we had a few cases last week .. so we are still a bit edgy yet.
    Very nice post 😉

    • Crafty Gardener

      Hi Joy, I started my dill from seed this year as I also found supplies very limited in garden centres. Hoping to have “cats” on my parsley this year too. I love lavender, and have been picking it to make lavender wands, more an experiment on my part but lovely to work with. I have an infuser and love lavender oil in it. Hoping Kingston can contain that outbreak they had. Lots of heat and humidity for the next few days, so early mornings in the garden and then just pop in and out to the shady parts for the rest of the day. Enjoy your garden.

  9. betty - NZ

    What a clever addition to your herb garden! Great photos and great whimsy. I had no idea that monarchs laid eggs on parsley! I knew there had to be other plants than swan plants, but could never find out what they were, so thanks for the info!

    ‘My Corner of the World’ is happy to see you this week! Thanks for linking.

    • Crafty Gardener

      It is the swallow tail butterflies that prefer the parsley, monarchs love milkweed, which I also have lots of in the garden. Enjoy your garden today Betty.

  10. Michelle -Nature Notes

    Oh I love this and always think..I should try raising some herbs besides the little bit I do for the swallowtails, but I only have full sun in the front, not the back and not a big porch either..but I love yours…

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