Last year I started a container herb garden. In spite of the cats, grasshoppers and my dogs I'll call it a success. When fall came, I brought the pots of perennial herbs into the house to overwinter.
Most of the perennials survived - lemon balm, chocolate mint, oregano. My rosemary and lavender plants died in the house; I didn't water often enough. That's kind of ironic, since part of my problem outdoors is the correct amount of water.
Those that survived the winter indoors have been hardened off and are now living outdoors again.
I replaced the rosemary plant and have planted various seeds again. The catnip is coming back, although it shows insect damage already. My outside cats aren't affected at all by catnip, but one of my indoor cats is addicted. I have to hide the catnip that I harvest and even the seeds that I saved from last year; he tried to climb to the top shelf of the bookcase to get to the zip bag. I had to move it to a closed cabinet.
|Feverfew, with catnip on the right|
New additions to the herb garden this spring are feverfew (a remedy for migraine headaches), peppermint and thyme, given to me by a friend.
The calendula seeds are up but they show damage from insects too. It's too early for grasshoppers so I don't know what sort of bug is snacking on my plants. The basil seedlings are still tiny but I know they'll take off as soon as it gets hot and the ground dries out from all the rain we've had this spring. I planted much more basil last year than I needed, so I planted fewer this year.
I think I might be successful this time at sprouting chives from seeds! Can you see them in the pot above?
I'm planning to enlarge the area of the herb garden this year as well as adding more varieties of plants. I asked hubby to drill drain holes in half a dozen cat litter buckets that I'll use as planters in the new area.
Over the weekend I bought a small pot of pineapple mint. It was in sad shape and on sale for 25% off, so I was willing to take a chance on it. It was lucky to even be alive, many of the other plants in the store's greenhouse were quite dead. Its bi-colored leaves are pretty and it does smell like pineapple.
I've ordered some Russian comfrey and am eagerly awaiting its arrival, although I still haven't decided where to plant it. I've read that it doesn't like containers, and that you should plant it where you want it because it will multiply wherever you put it.
What herbs are you growing this year? Do you grow in containers or in the ground?
My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a
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