Summer Herbs you Should be Growing

Summer herbs

Summer is around the corner, and that means its thyme to start growing your summer herbs. Why grows herbs you ask?

Besides the obvious reason of enhancing cooking, herbs have many other great uses including:

To help guide your gardening this summer, we’ve put together a list of the best summer herbs.

Getting Started

Before you get into planting your summer herbs it’s important you are prepared.

Ensure you have the correct equipment before jumping straight in. You will need the following items:

The next step is to plan out where each plant is going and prepare the soil.

Take into consideration the level of sunlight, as well as what else is growing around there. Different herbs have different spacing requirements and grow better or worse depending on what plant they are next to.

 

Summer herb basil

Basil

 

Basil is a summer herb that grows well in most Australian climates. You can grow basil through the months of October to December, as it loves warm soil.  The smell and taste of basil is strong and sweet. Basil is a great summer herb to grow next to tomatoes as it repels insects and diseases, and improves their growth and flavour.

How to Care for Basil:

  • Basil grows well in both raised garden beds and in pots.
  • Find a sunny spot either outside or inside, where it will receive 6 to 8 hours of full sun.
  • Soil should be moist but well-drained.
  • Plant in places away from driveways and roads, to avoid contamination by fuel.
  • Use organic fertilisers if you plan to eat it.

Planting:

  1. Sow seeds in trays about ¼ deep. Keep undercover for approximately 4 weeks to protect seedlings from the harsh sun.
  2. Plant seedlings in pots or gardens beds approximately 20-25cm apart.
  3. Harvest in 10-12 weeks. Pick leaves from the top to encourage bushy growth.

Uses of Basil:

Basil is a culinary summer herb that tastes fantastic when added to many dishes, particularly Italian cuisine. Sprinkle basil on your pasta or pizza or get creative and make your own pesto.

Pro tip: Basil retains flavour better when it is torn rather than chopped.

Basil has many health benefits and can be used to make natural remedies to aid with insect stings or even to reduce acne.

Summer Herb Thyme Icon

Thyme

 

Thyme is a hardy summer herb, that grows well in dry climates. It is a low growing summer herb with small and fragrant leaves. Bees love thyme flowers, so it’s a great herb to have if you are growing vegetables and fruit.

How to Care for Thyme:

  • Thyme grows well in garden beds and pots.
  • Plant in full sun.
  • Thyme can be planted all year round – but tastes the best in summer.
  • Water sparingly – Thyme loves dry spots. A good water once a week is plenty.
  • Give thyme a feed and some compost during spring and after flowering, but that’s it.

Planting:

  1. Grow in seed trays and keep uncover until seedlings are about 10cm. Thyme is slow to grow from seed, and a better option is to buy seedlings or propagate from cuttings. If you do decide to grow from seed, start to sow seeds in late winter, early spring.
  2. Replant seedlings in well-drained soil approximately 20-30cm apart.
  3. Harvest in 42-52 weeks.
  4. Place next to other dry-environment summer herbs such as oregano, sage and rosemary.

Uses of Thyme:

Thyme is a flavourful summer herb, with a slightly sour flavour much like lemon. It complements seafood and vegetables best and can either be used fresh or dried.

Time is renowned for its medical benefits, including lowering blood pressure, reducing coughing and fighting fungal infections.

Summer herb mint icon

Mint

 

Mint is an easy summer herb to grow, as it can be grown relatively fast from seed and via cuttings. It is a fast-spreading herb, so try to contain to a pot if you don’t want it to take over your garden bed. There are plenty of varieties of mint, including peppermint, spearmint, pineapple mint and chocolate mint.

How to Care for Mint:

  • Mint is fast growing and will quickly take over a garden bed. To keep it contained, grow it in pots.
  • Keep your mint in a place that gets half sunlight and half shade.
  • Mint prefers regular watering but requires well-drained soil.
  • Remove flowers to extend growth.

Planting:

  1. Grow seeds in trays or start from cuttings.
  2. Space 30cm apart.
  3. Harvest in 8-12 weeks. Use scissors to cut leaves from the top.

Uses of Mint:

Mint can be used in everything from salads to drinks to dessert. Pop a sprig in a glass of water, or add it to your tea.  This summer herb is full of antioxidants making it a great addition to your cooking.

Summer herbs rosemary icon

Rosemary

 

Rosemary is an amazing summer herb, with a delightful fragrance. You will need to live in a hot and dry climate for rosemary to thrive.

How to Care for Rosemary:

  • Rosemary thrives in pots and in the ground.
  • Plant in well-drained neutral to slightly alkaline soils. If you are planting your rosemary in pots, opt for cacti and succulent mix.
  • Water when the soil feels dry.
  • In spring feed with a slow-release fertiliser.

Planting:

  1. Use cuttings and plant in soils between 15°C and 20°C.
  2. Allow for 40-60cm between each cutting.
  3. Harvest about 6 weeks after planting.

Uses of Rosemary:

Rosemary is the perfect herb to add to your home roast. It compliments potatoes and lamb perfectly!

If you want to add privacy to your garden, rosemary bushes make great hedges. Some varieties bloom dark to pale blue flowers, through to pinks and whites, adding a fantastic splash of colour to your garden in spring.

Pro tip: Plant it outside your kitchen window so you can easily pick off the bush and add to your cooking. The rosemary will also deter flies and mosquitos from entering through your window.

summer herbs dill icon

Dill

 

Dill is an annual summer herb with feathery green leaves. If you are looking for a herb that is easy to grow and dill with, this herb is the right choice for you.

How to Care for Dill:

    • Dill thrives in full sun.
    • Keep soil moist and well-drained.
  • Compost regularly.
  • Use soil improvers especially in well-drained sandy soils to encourage water retention.
  • Dill does not grow well when transplanted.
  • Liquid feed throughout summer to increase the number of leaves produced.

Planting:

  1. Dill is easy to grow from seed. Sow directly into your garden or in pots.
  2. Space seeds 15cm apart.
  3. Feed when sowing or planting out.
  4. Harvest in 8-12 weeks.

Uses of Dill:

Dill has many culinary uses, and a small sprig goes along way in enhancing the flavour of any dish. It goes great in dips, soups, salads, and seafood.

If you are wanting to plant some of the above herbs in your garden this summer, it’s important that you give them regular feeds. If you have any questions on which of our fertilisers you should apply get in touch today.

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