Homegrown Herbs: A Frugal Delight

Lavender, sage, parsley, oregano, basil, mint, chives, and lemon balm.  These are the herbs we’re growing on our property right now. 

Why grow herbs?  Can’t I just toss a jar into the shopping cart when I’m at the market?  Sure!  But as far as bang for your buck goes, you can’t beat fresh herbs clipped right out of your own herb garden! 

Can’t you just smell the basil?  Taste the tomato sauce?  Oh man….

Above is flat-leaf parsley, incredibly flavorful and fragrant when used fresh, and it dries well.  I found out this year that it only grows strong for 2 years.  The third year it goes to seed right away by sending up shoots in the middle.  My super creative Mom adds those to bouquets of flowers.  Go MOM! 

This is oregano.  Hardy, not at all fussy, easy to grow, harvest, and dry for storage.  I think if I kept dividing and planting it, the stuff would take over the whole garden.

My question is: Why not grow your own herbs?

You can grow them anywhere – in pots, in window boxes, in the garden, along your driveway, inside, outside, as part of your landscaping…in old toilets or bathtubs, discarded bed frames, ancient pianos, who knows?

You can give them away as gifts, use them in cooking, in homemade tea, in medicine, in aromatherapy…

You can easily store up MORE than you’ll need for winter by continually clipping and drying them, and then storing them in Ball jars or other trusty containers.  And they are CHEAP when you grow them yourself.

When I think about how much spice companies charge for their “gourmet” dried herbs and spices, I’m appalled.  The scent and flavor of theirs are not nearly as vibrant or “true” as homegrown herbs, and it’s no fun for me to pick out a jar on a shelf.  Not compared to getting my hands dirty and having the satisfaction of growing these delights myself.

I challenge you: If you’ve never given it a try, buy a little starter plant or kit, and grow at least one kind of herb that you already know you like.  You just might get hooked.

Note: If I disappear for a few days without warning, I’m delivering a baby!  I’ll be back and you can bet there will be pictures of Baby #2.  Thanks for understanding.  :-)

Advertisements

4 thoughts on “Homegrown Herbs: A Frugal Delight

  1. Could not agree more! I haven’t even thought of drying them out and storing them in jars – I’ve only been using them fresh. Duh!!! I love jars, so I’m excited now – one more way to use my jars! =P The only herbs I’ve got right now are Basil, Cilantro, and Rosemary. It’s the Cilantro that wants to take over the garden… that thing spread everywhere! (And, smells awesome). My Basil is in a huge pot and doing awesome. My favorite fresh-herb-food-item right now is Basil and Tomato Grilled Cheese… it was especially yummy on an Onion Bun the other day! Thanks for posting… you have inspired me to do more of a variety of herbs next year!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s