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Thursday, May 8, 2008

My Herb Garden, My Green Thumb

Unlike Lauren, who lives on a few acres, I live on almost zero property, so I am trying to figure out how to keep herbs thriving in containers. I'll admit, basil grows like a weed. I am certain anyone in South Florida can stick it in the dirt and you won't kill it. Cut the flowers off when you see them so the flowers don't take from the eatable leaves.
I have cilantro in a store bought pot, I haven't transferred yet. Its doing better in shade. The hot sun dries it out too much. I haven't had it long enough to kill it.

I have rosemary in a terracotta pot. When it dies, I water it and it comes back. (Lucky for me!)

I find if I put to many herbs in one pot, one will take over and none will do well, so I am going to keep them all separate, if I get to it. The chives seem to have survived the long winter with the thyme.

The parsley grew like crazy and we attracted parsley butterflies last year. Because of the amazing beauty of a caterpillars life cycle we let them eat the parsley and watch them turn to cocoons and butterflies.
I harvest a few container banana peppers last spring. The tomatoes didn't do well. This year I bought an aerogarden for the house. This first round I didn't follow instructions to well. I am probably going to have to toss the loser tomato plants and start all over.

That's my thumb. I'm not a good farmer. I did take a nice photo of David planting last year!

I killed the sage and lavender.


Lauren said...

Nice container garden! We had sage, but it died with the others when I got too busy to water regularly. I've not tried lavender, but did plant verbena. It smelled so heavenly...

Allana Martian said...

Maybe you can try bigger pots for the ones that are dying and also, add mulch. That really helps retain moisture. google container gardening for tips and also google hanging tomatoes. Above all, keep trying!!! :-)

Danette said...

A word of advice on your basil, and this comes form an old Italian woman.

Do not clip the leaves off, it will eventually kill the plant, clip the entire stalk. And once you see the flowers pop up at the top of the stem, pinch them off. That will keep them going longer.

And no direct sunlight for basil, it will surely kill it. We just planted some basil and that puppy is doing fan-flipping-tantastic.

My daughter uses it in all of our pasta sauces. Yummo!

turtlewomyn said...

I am telling you, it is that S. Florida sun. When we were in West Palm Beach Chris made fun of me because I killed everything. Up here in Tallahassee, it all thrives and I barely do anything. Last year I grew tomatoes, peppers, basil, oregano, and thyme on our back deck. This year I have a four by four raised bed by the garage (more sun). This year I have eggplants and lettuce too. We also put in some blueberry bushes by the driveway (won't let them fruit until next year).
I also do a butterfly/hummingbird garden. Last year we hatched out tons of gulf frittilaries on our passionvine and some monarchs on our milkweed. Savannah just loved looking for caterpillars. The hummingbirds are fun too, one day I walked out to two fighting in my yard. Vicious little things.

Permission to Mother said...

Thanks for all the useful tips. I can surely try bigger pots and not putting so many plants in one pot. And yes, I will keep on trying. Perhaps sometimes, I will be trying harder than other times. Thanks for the reminder that it's the hot sun and not me... but that doesn't explain the indoor, aerogarden problems. :)

turtlewomyn said...

Another thing to look into, rain barrels. We put one together ourselves last year (bought an old pepper barrel for $25, put a spigot in on the bottom, painted it to make it pretty, and put it on our downspout in the back). We used it to water our plants. I want to get another one for the front so I can hook up our new garden to a drip irrigation system from the barrel. You have to be careful for mosquito breeding, but they have little dunker things for that if you can't get the top closed off tight enough.

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