Herbs are a great beginning

With this Ohio weather, it’s a saving grace from insanity to think gardening. Right now, I’m painting a garden chair and herb markers. Best thing to do in this rain, snow, ice and cold. The painting is fun and encouraging to move me to thoughts of spring and summer. I guess winter is meant for us gardeners to clean our gardening tools and to plan what goes in the garden.

Lately, I have been focused on herbs. Lots and lots of herbs. Anyone who has used rosemary with potatoes or shoved a few sprigs between the skin and meat of a chicken before baking knows the wonderful taste that herbs provide. Or, the taste of fresh basil, oregano, parsley and thyme in a tomato sauce. Yum. Herbs bump up the taste of food and beverage.

Herbs make a beverage delightful. A fresh sprig of mint in ice tea explodes the taste to a cool, refreshing, extra-special flavor. A leaf of basil or cilantro in a drink changes up the usual to special. Yes, olives or orange rinds might be the usual, but adding just the right herb makes that drink special.

Herbs are easy. The right location, soil, pot and an herb is happy. Have a hot, sunny spot, plop a lavender herb in a pot or in the ground. It will be happy and so will you. Lavender, catmint and many other flowering herbs will gift you with great flowers that require little water. And the smell of dried lavender in a sachet placed in a dresser drawer is better than any store-bought perfume.

For those who love to plant or pot a tomato or pepper, an herb is a great addition to the garden. For those who never planted, herbs are a great start to gardening. The basic herbs to get started include basil, cilantro, sage, parsley, oregano and dill. What’s nice about each is that you can eat fresh, or dry or freeze them for later. What’s really nice, too, is that you know what chemicals you did not put on them when you eat a sprig right from the garden.

Herbs. A world of possibilities that give so much pleasure with taste, flowers and flower arrangements. Enjoy.

Kathleen O'Brien

A writer who enjoys gardening and life.

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Volume 11, Issue 6, Posted 10:14 AM, 03.19.2019