Herb gardening is one form of gardening that has a lot of beneficial purposes. Herb gardens can create a wonderful atmosphere in your home and also provide ingredients for your meals as well. This article covers the fundamentals of herb gardening in all its ramifications.
Ever since the time of the Mayflower, herbs have been cultivated and made use of. Their uses have ranged from seasoning to the curing illnesses and the making perfumes. As time progressed and dried herbs became more common, the practice of herb cultivation became less popular because available medical technology doesn’t focus on treatment with specific herbs and the cosmetic and perfume industries tend to manufacture a huge number of the lotions, soaps and perfumes. Regardless of all this in the last decades, ethnic foods have become a whole lot popular and people are starting to cultivate herbs once more.
Growing herbs successfully all depends on managing the following issues properly:
The primary step to successful herb gardening is making a decision on which site to plant your herbs in. Size tends to depend on the variety of herbs which you want to cultivate, a good size for a kitchen garden would be about 4 feet by 20 feet. The area and label for each herb that you want to grow should be properly diagrammed. You should also ensure that you divide the annual and perennial herbs from each other.
When you select a site, the drainage will usually be the most essential feature, herbs won’t grow easily in the wet soil but the soil does not need to be that fertile. Very fertile oil tends to grow big plants that have no flavor. Basically the soil should be neutral and neither heavy on acid or alkaline. If the soil doesn’t drain well, remove some 15 to 18 inches of soil and add a three inch layer of gravel, then replace the soil. This will enable the soil drain more efficiently. Having a pH factor that is around 6.5 will ensure that excellent herbs are produced.
The soil should be essentially neutral, neither heavy on the acid nor alkaline. If, however, the soil does not drain well, remove 15 to 18 inches of soil and put in a 3 inch layer of gravel and replace the soil. The soil will now drain more efficiently. A ph factor of around 6.5 produces excellent herbs.
As soon as the soil has been selected and proper drainage arranged, the next thing to do is to prepare the soil. You should get rid of at least 12 to 18 inches of the top soil and you should ensure that the sub soil is neither hard nor compacted. If the sub soil is hard or compacted, then you can work in sphagnum peat or organic material in order to loosen it. The top soil should be mixed with sphagnum peat and sand or even composting material. This way you will make certain that the soil is workable and will retain its moisture. The top soil should always be replaced with a few more inches than was initially taken off. This will allow the garden to settle as soon as it has been planted.
You should also be very vigilant in looking for garden insects as well as diseases. Aphids, spider mites, grass hoppers, caterpillars, and rusts are all among the different ones that can come your way. Make sure that you treat for these pests and diseases as soon as they are spotted. Fail to do this and they may ruin your garden.