Two months ago I rounded up all my pots and my herbs and made a container herb garden. Here's what's happening in the herb garden in July.
I planted some of those pots with seeds - some of the seeds were fresh and some were old - some sprouted and some didn't. I reseeded the empty pots this week and hope that eventually they will all have something growing in them.
In other pots, I planted some cuttings from plants I already had. The lemon balm and chocolate mint are doing great. I plan to try some cuttings from my rosemary and lavender plants soon. So far the rosemary plant is doing well.
Several of my plants weren't happy in the full sun site of my herb garden. The advantage of having a container garden is that plants can easily be moved, so the lemon balm, chocolate mint, lavender, and a daisy plant spend the sunny afternoons in an old wheelbarrow under the fruit trees. When I mow the grass, I just move the wheelbarrow.
However, I'm battling grasshoppers. Where I was hoping for lush green plants, there are holey leaves and bitten-off basil. I asked on my gardening forums for advice on fighting grasshoppers organically and really didn't get any answers other than to let my chickens free-range. We have a terrible coyote problem and I can't let the chickens loose, so that remedy is out. I'm trying some other things, and will be writing about them soon.
|Calendula with grasshopper damage|
Right behind the plant shelf there's a large spiderweb. My first instinct every day is to swipe it away, but I watched a grasshopper land in the web one morning, to the spider's delight - another form of organic grasshopper control.
|Tiny oregano seedlings|
|Another green basil in the "strawberry pot"|
I planted a gourmet blend organic lettuce in tubs near the herb garden, since the garden wasn't ready yet for planting, and I still put the seeds in later than I should have. Since the tubs weren't behind the garden fence, one of the dogs nibbled a few plants. I was disappointed with the small volume of lettuce, but then it began to rain, and rain, and rain some more, and then it got hot, and the lettuce went kind of crazy in the galvanized tubs.
When the lettuce showed signs of wanting to bolt, I harvested the rest of it and we ate it as soon as we could. The tubs are now empty and I'm deciding what to plant in that space next.
There is also a tub of yellow onions planted near the herb garden. Although grasshoppers are attacking the white onions in the garden, so far these are untouched.
Oh, hello there. Grasshoppers aren't the only challenge these seedlings face.
The water spigot is to the left. When I turn it on to fill the goats' and horses' troughs, a hole near the top of the hose sprays water like a sprinkler aimed at the herb garden. I've moved plants so that the ones requiring more water are closer to this "automatic watering system" while the herbs requiring less water are farther away. I might as well take advantage of it.
So, in July this is how the herb garden looks. I was expecting more growth, but the grasshopper invasion is probably partly to blame. I'll update you again next month.
You might also enjoy:
The New Herb Garden
The Herb Garden in June
The Herb Garden in July
The Herb Garden in August
The Herb Garden in Late September
Ten Ways to Use Basil
How to Dry Homegrown Herbs
My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a