Herbs Essential to Great Food and Simple to Grow

By: Ungari Dodisto

Herbs have been with humans since the dawn of recorded time and before. They have been used in a wide variety of functions and new uses continue to be found for them in the present day. Depending on who you ask, there are anywhere from 40 to 60 herbs to choose from and most of them are very simple to grow and use.

The reason that herbs can be used in so many different functions is because they come in different varieties. For instance, there are aromatic herbs that are grown purely for the scent they give off. The oils from these herbs can be found in candles, perfumes, and many other cosmetic and skin care products.

Most widely known variety of herbs are the culinary herbs. In fact, you will find people who know only about the culinary herbs. Some of the popular varieties are basil, dill and chives. Many gardeners grow culinary herbs. However, when growing them one must be careful not to plant another sapling where a herb was already planted. The reason is that most of the herbs are annuals, i.e. they reappear without the need to replant.

Some herbs are considered ornamental as they are basically just grown to look at. These herbs may be used to make fresh or dried arrangements and they are often found in and amongst the flowers in a flower garden.

Finally, some herbs are considered medicinal and are used to treat a variety of ailments to this very day. While not necessarily embraced by the Western medical community, herbs remain an important remedy to ailments in many cultures and their effectiveness is still being studied by scientists.

Again, most people are familiar with the culinary herbs and it is a fact that our foods would be quite bland and tasteless without them. Herbs are used to create marinades and to imbue foods with a subtle, yet pronounced, flavor that enhances a great many dishes. Fortunately, even in economic hard times, most people manage to keep culinary herbs on hand even if they are forced to grow them.

Indeed, itís a good idea to grow herbs in your garden because it is quite easy to grow them and there are no hassles involved. However, you must learn to distinguish between annual, perennial, and biennial herbs. This is important because you will need to keep track of herbs that will be coming up at different times in the year. Itís important to know their growing cycle so that you donít disturb it and lose some of the herbs due to your ignorance.

Most of the culinary herbs are easy to grow because they do quite well in fairly fertile soil that may have been drained by other crops. Moreover, they do just as well indoors as they do outdoors. However, make sure you donít plant them too deeply in the soil or they may not have a chance to grow. Also, always harvest your herbs in the mornings to get the best of their precious oils.

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Ungari Dodisto is the chief editor for F herbs, the web's premier resource for information about herbs, For questions or comments about this article visit: www.herbso.com/articles
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