Try these herbs in your herb garden. You will have herbs for beauty, flavoring and medicine.
Catnip: This member of the mint family is fun for kitties and good medicine for calming colicky babies. It likes rich moist soil and part shade. Medicinally, catnip has been used to reduce fevers, relieves GI distress and menstrual discomfort, and promote relaxation. Historically it was used to relieve excess sexual desire in men. It does have estrogenic properties.
Curry Plant: This fragrant plant is not the curry of Indian cooking, but it does have a nice smell. Curry plant thrives in dry, hot, sunny locations. Xeriscape with it. It has pretty foliage and nice little yellow flowers that dry well for potpourri or everlasting floral arrangements.
Lavender: Every herb garden needs lavender! Start from cuttings or plants as seeds are difficult to grow. Plant lavender in a sunny location with average to dry soil. Do not over water.
Sorrel: Sorrel is a tart winter herb that is very nutritious and excellent in soups and salads. Sorrel likes rich or average soil. A partly sunny location is best. It does not tolerate much heat.
Cilantro: Grow cilantro and you will also be growing coriander. I harvest both the leaves and seeds from my plants. Grow in the sunshine in average soil. I repeat plantings so that I can have a constant supply. You can direct sow seeds or purchase plants.
Pennyroyal: Pennyroyal is a creeping mint. It likes moisture and some shade. It does well in pots or in fairy gardens. It possesses bug repellent and diaphoretic properties. Pennyroyal herb has been used to relieve cramps and colds.
Aloe: I grow aloe in pots, in poor dry soil. The color stays greener if you protect them from the sun a bit. Use it for burns. Start with a plant or leaf cuttings. Do not use for deep wounds or if you know staph is present.
Rose: Rose hips are an often forgotten herb, and growing roses is not hard. I like the repeat bloomers and the old fashioned varieties. Rich soil, frequent water, and sunshine all help your roses to grow. Roses like to eat frequently. Black spot can be a big challenge, so look for varieties that are resistant to black spot.
Garlic: Also known as the stinking rose, garlic can be planted now and harvested next year. Just divide a bulb into cloves and plant them. The biggest cloves generally grow the biggest bulbs. They like average sandy loam. Garlic is a heavy feeder. Use garlic to fight infections, reduce blood pressure, and reduce cholesterol. Garlic may prevent hardening of the arteries and gastrointestinal cancers. Avoid with the use of blood thinners and before and after surgery.
Ginger: Ginger is ancient medicine from Asia. It is used to combat several types of nausea. Caution should be used if taking blood thinners. Just stick a piece of gingerroot in a pot and water it.
Chives: Regular rounded leaves or flattened garlic ones grow well in rich soil in a pot. I do not let mine flower, but you can let them flower and have edible blossoms in a salad. Keep fairly moist in shade or semi-shade.
Marjoram: Marjoram, both sweet and pot, grows easily. I usually just purchase a plant as I do not use much of it. It can be grown from cuttings or seeds as well. Sunshine and average soil suit this Mediterranean oregano cousin.
Parsley: Parsley is a biennial. It likes average or rich soil. Start from seeds or from a purchased plant. Flat Italian parsley is more flavorful than the curly kind. I consider dried parsley useless for flavoring. It is easy to grow parsley. Everyone should keep a plant or two in a sunny spot with average soil or in a pot for year round use.
Savory: Summer savory is an easy annual. Summer savory has a nicer flavor than winter savory. Winter savory is a perennial nice edging plant. I do not use much savory so I usually just buy a plant or two. It likes to grow in sunshine with average soil. Seeds can be slow to germinate.
Tarragon: True French tarragon can be difficult to obtain. I grow it in a pot. Tarragon must be used fresh for the best flavor.
Borage: Beautiful blue flowered borage with the cucumber flavor helps other plants to grow. It is high in calcium and a mild laxative. Borage is also said to raise spirits and give courage. It grow easily from seed in fall or spring in rich soil in sunshine
If you plant a culinary herb garden, you are automatically planting a medicinal one as well. Culinary herbs are usually easy to locate. Most of the big box stores carry them as well as smaller family run nurseries. In general, herbs are easy to grow. They thrive in the ground or in pots. Plant rosemary, a drought tolerant perennial, and you have a yummy antioxidant. Sage is great for sore throats and hot flashes. Parsley is rich in vitamins and freshens breath. Catnip, chamomile, and fennel are helpful in taming tummy troubles of adults and children. Oregano makes great pizza, but did you know it’s helpful for treating infections too? Thyme helps soothe respiratory problems. Let your food be your medicine. With herbs, that is very easy to do!