Herbs are practically unpretentious, they can withstand almost any frosts and it is enough to simply plant them. But I often killed plant when harvesting herbs. As a result, I need to sow again and wait for new herb crops.
Different herbs require different care. We’ll share with you information about caring basil, mint, parsley, rosemary, thyme, coriander, oregano and how to harvest these herbs without killing plants.
So, let’s start!
The care of the basil is in timely watering, nutrition, cropping, pinching, and loosening of the soil. We water the basil when the soil is enough to dry and use organic fertilizers once a month. The first time we feed up the basil 12 days after planting the seedlings into the soil: in 6 liters of water dissolve 1 tbsp of mineral fertilizers (on 1m2 pour 1-2 liters). In the basil, which suffers from lack of fertilizers or drought, the leaves often become rigid. To get a good bush, respectively and more leaves, the plant needs to be cut the young leaves and tender tops of the shoots several times. Also, we need to loosen the soil (around the plant).
Harvesting. When harvesting the basil, we need to determine the required amount. If we need a few leaves to put them on a table, we use our fingers and pinch the top with several leaves. But if we harvest spices for the winter, we should cut the entire stalk by kitchen shears, leaving 3-4 leaves because new twigs will begin to grow in their place. It will allow enjoying the fresh basil for some time.
Mint needs good lighting and fertile, loose, moist soils. It is well tolerated and shaded conditions, but in this case, the soil should not be very humid, as it can cause rotting of roots and plant death. The caring also involves the regular loosening of the soil, watering, and removing weeds.
Harvesting. Pick stems at the beginning of flowering, when the largest amount of essential substances is accumulated in the plant, giving it a stable, strong smell. The top is picked during the budding period. When harvesting the leaves, it is necessary to trim carefully with scissors or pinch with fingers, so as not to damage the stalk. After they can be washed, dried and used in fresh or dried form.
Parsley is a rather unpretentious plant and caring for it is not difficult, it is enough to water and weed in time. When taking care of parsley, do not get fond of fertilizers. The plant is able to accumulate nitrates. Therefore, we add nitrogen fertilizers only in small doses and preferably in the preparation of the soil. Watering parsley is best in the morning or in the evening, in dry sunny weather – 2 times a day. It should be noted that the frequency and nature of watering change taste properties of parsley. If we want to get tender and soft greens for salads, need plentiful watering, which will provide 60-70% of soil moisture. If we want to get the most aromatic spice for further drying, then limit the watering a few weeks before harvesting. The leaves will get a strong spicy aroma.
Harvesting. We use kitchen shears. Choose young parsley because it is the most fragrant. Check the stems. If the stems have three or more bundles of leaves, they are sufficiently ripe for harvest. Don’t touch the stems with one or two segments. Most parsley plants are ready to be collected in 70 – 90 days after planting. Picking parsley, we cut the greens under the root and not just the top because it stimulates the appearance of more new, lush and productive stems.
Rosemary is a light-loving plant that does not tolerate frosts. This herb requires regular abundant watering in spring, in the summer and autumn. In winter, in cold rooms, watering is reduced (1 time in 15 days). Spraying rosemary is not necessary, but for a dense crown, the plant should be sprayed in the warm season. It needs to be fed twice a month with mineral and organic fertilizers from March to September when the rosemary begins a period of active vegetation. Also, rosemary likes calcium.
Harvesting. The tool is kitchen shears. We pick the greens before the rosemary has started to bloom. During this period the leaves contain the numerous useful substances and aromatic oils. We cut rosemary lengths of 15 – 20 centimeters, trying to choose the most succulent and young stems.
Thyme does not like very moist soil. So it is necessary to periodically loosen the soil between the rows so that the water is better evaporated from it. If there are hot dry days, then the soil should, on the contrary, often and plentifully moisten. As soon as buds appear, we need to regularly water the plants, so that they abundantly bloom. If the thyme is very thick, then it can be cut and it does not affect the condition of the plant as a whole. Also, we feed the thyme in spring and autumn.
Harvesting. We use kitchen shears. For fresh consumption, leaves and stems from the plant can be cut at any time of the year. Cutting should be done carefully. If the root system is damaged, the whole plant may perish. It is impossible to break a plant because it will long ill and recover.
Main care for coriander is reduced to regular weeding, loosening and timely irrigation, which, depending on the weather, is carried out once every 7-10 days.
Harvesting. Again we use kitchen shears. The coriander should be cut at the moment when its growth began to stop, but the flowering period has not yet begun. But it’s very difficult to catch this period, and therefore we recommend cutting green coriander when it rises 20 centimeters. We cut early in the morning. It is desirable to wash the cut grass well from possible garbage, dust, dried up parts and insects.
Care for oregano is not more than usual seedlings of vegetables or flower. Watering, weeding, feeding are a guarantee of a good growth of fragrant herbs. Watering should be moderate, from the excess moisture the roots begin to rot, which leads to the death of the whole plant. Loosening the soil will positively affect the general condition of the plant, it will be better to grow.
Harvesting. Plants are harvested in the second half of the day. For harvesting only flowering crowns of plants in length no more than 30 cm, which are cut by kitchen shears or a sharp knife. Only healthy flowering branches are subject to cutting. The plant cannot be torn from the root, as it can completely destroy the oregano.
Of course, there are not all herbs but we try to describe the most popular plants. What should you remember? First, kitchen shears and your fingers are the best tools of harvesting herbs. For example, we can use kitchen shears when picking tarragon and use fingers when harvest sage. Second, never torn herbs because it kills your plant. Third, the optimal cutting is 1-3 cm from the root. If you follow these tips, you will have fragrant herbs all year around.