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Improve Your Cooking with an Herb Garden

Updated on March 12, 2011

Do you love preparing delicious meals for your friends and family? Do you like to use fresh ingredients? If so, considered planting a herb garden so that you will have easy – and low cost -- access to fresh herbs that you can use in your favorite recipes any time that you want.

Decide What Herbs to Grow

Growing herbs doesn't have to be time consuming or difficult, and you don't have to be a gardening expert to get started. The first thing you need to do is decide what to plant. You don't have to begin with a huge selection of herbs. Instead, think about the recipes you prepare and what types of herbs you use the most frequently. Those are the items you should try focus on. Once you have enjoyed success with growing a few different types of herbs you will become more confident in your abilities and decide to become more adventurous with different plants!

While not everyone uses the same herbs in their cooking efforts, some herbs are used more commonly that others. If you're just getting started with the idea of growing your own herbs, consider growing a few of the most popular varieties.

Herbs that you may want to consider planting in your first herb garden include: basil, cilantro, dill, parsley, rosemary, tarragon, and thyme. Of course, if you don't ever cook with one or more of these, leave that plant out. If there are other herbs that you use frequently, by all means, include them in your garden.

Select a Location for Your Herb Garden

Once you have decided what types of herbs you want to grow you will need to make a decision about whether you want to try your hand at growing an indoor herb garden or if you want to keep your plants outdoors. Regardless of your preference, keep in mind that you will need a sunny location to grow your herbs, and you'll need to place the plants where you will remember to water them frequently.

Care for Your Plants

If you are a notice gardener, you will probably want to purchase seedlings for your herb garden rather than attempting to start your plants from seeds. You can certainly begin with seeds if you want to do so; it's really just a matter of preference.

Whether you start with seedlings or seeds, be certain that you follow the care instructions that come with the herbs that you purchase to get your garden started. Pay close attention to the amount of sunlight needed, how much water is necessary, and what type of fertilizing schedule should be followed. Most plant problems result from failure to provide individual plants with the particular type of care they need.

Enjoy the Fruits of Your Labors

Once your herb plants start to grow and you're able to enjoy adding fresh herbs to your favorite recipes without having to run to the supermarket every time you want to try a new dish you'll be so glad that you decided to try your hand at herb gardening. Happy planting and bon appétit!


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