“Here’s flowers for you;
Hot lavender, mints, savoury, marjoram;
The marigold, that goes to bed wi’ the sun
And with him rises weeping: these are flowers
Of middle summer, and I think they are given
To men of middle age.”
William Shakespeare, The Winter’s Tale (4.4.122-7)
It has not escaped my attention that I did not formally introduce my herb bed in the Edible Garden in the bustle of the past year, so here it is – *clears throat* ahem, I’d like you to meet my herb bed.
Apparently along with being considered lucky, it is also practical to keep herbs outside of your kitchen door. The herbs that I currently have growing in my herb garden include evergreen ones such as traditional roast dinner herbs: rosemary, thyme and sage and tender ones great for fish dishes, salads and pasta dishes such as: dill, mint (in a large pot) and oregano. This is (another) area of the garden that I would like to develop this year by expanding the array of herbs growing in the bed. I have some borage seeds on standby ready to be sown this year and I will sow a surplus amount to plant alongside my tomatoes as a companion plant to improve their flavour.
This is how the herb bed was looking last year in June not long after the brick path had been installed:
Here is another photo taken from another angle after we had put in the pond, installed the deck and begun landscaping the area:
Last year, I also moved the miniature pear tree that was planted in the Honeysuckle Garden into the middle of the herb bed to add some vertical structure to this area. I really like the way this looks so this will be staying! Here is how the herb garden is looking at the end of Winter this year:
I intend to plant cosmos grown from seed in a drift in the grass which edges the pond to add some height to create further rhythm in this area and to gently divide the areas. I also will be sowing larkspur (delphinium) from seed to mingle in amongst the herbs. I have had trouble in the past in both this garden and my last one with slugs eating my larkspurs to the ground, so perhaps utilising the scents of the herbs as companion planting will help with deterring them! Last year I filled in some gaps in the herb bed with snapdragons and hollyhocks grown from seed which was nice, but I want to try something different this year. It would also be good to successfully grow larkspur for a change too.
Let’s hope my plan works! 🙂
Written by Bethany Wright