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Growing Summer Herbs

In the Kitchen
Summer Herbs | Appetite for Life

I would say the first things I learned to grow when I was young were summer herbs. I planted a small garden in our backyard with strawberries and thyme. The strawberries didn't do so well, but the thyme was great.

Fast forward many years, and I've always grown herbs wherever I've lived. Sometimes they were in containers, and other times, right in the garden. I would rather grow herbs than anything else.

The best part for me is being able to go out my back door and snip fresh summer herbs while I'm cooking. Then in the fall, I usually do a big harvest and dry lots of herbs for the winter and make pesto with the basil.

If you haven't grown herbs, here are some tips to get started.

Start with Containers

I think a small pot of thyme, basil, or parsley is perfect to have on a kitchen window sill. You can keep an eye on them and remember to use them.

If you want to be a bit more adventurous and have the space, you could use a bigger pot, and plant a couple of herbs together and put them outside. Herbs love the sun, so putting them outside will make them really happy. All you need to do is water them.

Easy Herbs to Start With

  • Basil - loves the sun and grows without much effort except watering it and giving it some sunlight. You can even find basil plants at many grocery stores, so it is an easy plant to get you started. I love adding a few basil leaves to my salad.

  • Thyme - is so hearty. You can't do much to kill it. It does very well in the sun, but if you have some shade, it will also be fine. I use my thyme in my soups and with meats & chicken.

  • Sage - really hearty, even through the winter. Sage does best when left alone once it is established. If you plant it in the ground, even here in the Northeast, it can withstand most winters. If you keep it in a pot, you will have to bring it in just because the pot will freeze and damage the roots. Sage will grow into a bush if you let it. I use sage whenever I make anything with chicken or turkey.

  • Rosemary - another hearty herb that loves the sun and doesn't need much care. I use rosemary when I roast potatoes or cook beef or pork.

  • Parsley - like basil, this grows really easily, and you may find it too at the grocery store. It is also really easy to grow from seeds if you are so inclined.

Herbs All Year Round

As I mentioned above, many herbs love to be outside, but if you live in an area that does experience cold weather during the winter, you will want to bring them in. That can seem like a chore, but the benefit is that you will have fresh herbs all winter long.

What you might notice, however, is as you use them, they may not grow back as quickly as they do during the spring and summer. That is because they go into a hibernation state. Depending on the size of your plant, you want to use them sparingly.

I hope this inspires you to think about growing herbs. You won't regret it!


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About Me

Hi!  I'm Jen

Cooking is a passion passed down from both of my grandmothers to my mother and then to my sister and me.  

Throughout my career, I was always drawn back to food.  I've learned from experienced chefs, apprenticed with professional bakers, and tasted coffee with international experts.

Today I'm sharing those experiences with you.

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