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Herb Gardening: Easy As 1-­2-­3!

Herbs are wonderful plants with benefits ­- they can be planted in pots, raised beds, or garden beds. To grow they need sunshine, water, and soil...and some occasional TLC.

Pots work well for those with limited space or for convenience. Choose a vessel with good drainage; add potting soil or organic mix and your favorite herbs. In large pots you can put several different varieties together -­ like parsley, rosemary, and thyme. No worries they will all grow happily in harmony! Or, plant them individually in repurposed containers to add interest to your garden...just make sure it has adequate drainage.

Sunshine
Choose a bright sunny place...one that gets sun for at - ­least 6 hours during the day. However, with lots of sunshine will come drying of soil, so make sure you check the soil for moisture after a long hot day. Tip - water the soil not the plant!

Hydration
Let the soil dry out between waterings - fertilize once a week during the summer to keep nutrients in the soil and plants growing strong. Don't water the leaves especially in the sunshine ­- it will cause sunburn.

Harvesting
Make cuttings from the ends and top of the plant ­- you can pinch, use sharp scissors, or a knife. Never take more than a quarter of the branch and it will continue to grow out - the more you pinch the more they grow!

Check zones on herbs -­ some will winter well and some will be too tender to survive winters in upstate NY. Planting herbs in a bed? The same rules go: sunshine, well drained rich soil, and water as needed. Mix and match plants, explore new and exciting varieties, or stick to your tried and true favorites to create the perfect set of planted herbs. Think Spring!

Tags: herb gardening   herbs   sunshine   water   soil   tlc   tips   spring  
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