Sub-Tropical South East QueenslandBasic Tips for Growing Herbs

Position

 

Most herbs are hardy and will grow well throughout the garden, or in a separate garden of their own.  Grow herbs amongst your vegetables, they make great companions and they can improve growth and flavour of vegetables and help repel pests.

Choose a spot close to the house for easy access, if you are planting herbs throughout the garden place the ones you will use the most, close to the house.  The first step is to decide which herbs you would like to grow and how much room you will need.  Make some notes on how they grow, how tall, how wide, do they like lots of sun or do they prefer shade.

Sun

 

Generally, herbs need full sun, but some will survive on as little as 2 hours of good sun (after 9am) a day.  The herbs flavour and scent is stronger when they have adequate sun.  Herbs with grey leaves like lavender and rosemary require more sun, whilst parsley, mints and lemon balm will take less.

Soil

 

Most herbs need good drainage and grow best in a light crumbly soil.  Clay soils will need compost and manure dug through, building up the garden to ensure good drainage.  Sandy soils also need compost and manure added to give nutrients and help retain moisture.  Most herbs like a slightly alkaline soil you can add dolomite to increase pH.

Fertilise

 

Fertilise with a complete fertiliser or organic liquid fertiliser.  You can also use mushroom compost, worm castings and homemade compost containing chook or cow poo.

Planting

 

When planting out your herbs, soak the roots/tube for a minute in a solution of seaweed, this will help to prevent transplant shock.  Trim off any yellow or damaged leaves.

Water

 

When herbs are first planted water them in well.  Water regularly for the first week or so.  Once plants have settled in, rather than giving frequent light sprinkling, water deeply less often, this will encourage plant roots to grow deeper into the soil.

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