11 Autumn Jobs For The Herb Garden

October 20, 2008

Herb gardening jobs for the autumn is the subject of my contribution to the Alternative Kitchen Garden’s podcast in episode 73 where you can listen to me running through a few things to do in your herb garden in autumn.

Here are a few from that episode and a few extra ones, there are more of course:

1.  Remove any annual herbs that are no longer producing usable leaves/seeds, weed the area and dig if necessary and apply a mulch.

2.  Weed areas around established perennial herbs and apply some kind of mulch eg leaf mould.  Cut back any dead leaves/stalks.

3.  If you’d like a supply of fresh herb leaves in the winter, pot up some mint, chives, basil, parsley or french tarragon and bring them indoors or into the greenhouse.

4.  Take cuttings of bay, hyssop, cotton lavender, lavender, thyme, curry plant, box, southernwood, rosemary, sage to create new plants for the spring.  Keep the cuttings in a cool but frost free place through the winter eg a cold frame/greenhouse/cool room in the house.

5.  Take root cuttings of mints and tarragon.

6.  Collect seed heads on a dry day for use in cooking or for sowing next spring eg dill, coriander, caraway.

7.  Plant hardy perennials eg rosemary, sage, southernwood and thyme.

8.  Divide any established herbs that are getting too big.  Herbs that can be divided include lemon balm, yarrow, chives, comfrey, salad burnet, mints, sage, marjoram, oregano. Either replant them in a new position or give them away to friends or family.

9.  Sow seeds that need stratification eg arnica, sweet woodruff, yellow iris, soapwort, sweet cicely, sweet violet, primrose.  Sow in pots and keep covered with glass or keep in the grenhouse or a shady corner of the garden until the spring.

10.  Prune any perennial herbs that have lost their shape or are starting to get woody eg sage, lavender, thyme, rosemary.  Avoid cutting into the woodier parts.  The exception to this is rosemary which recovers better than the other herbs when pruned quite hard.

11. Bring tender herbs indoors/a frost free place or protect with fleece if there is a danger of frost.  Tender herbs include scented pelargoniums, young bay or myrtle trees, pineapple sage, lavender christiana.  French tarragon benefits from a mulch to protect it through the winter.  Silver posie thyme dislikes cold winds so will appreciate a fleece covering during the winter.

Hope you enjoy these tips for ensuring a thriving herb garden.  This is an excerpt from one of the bonus books that will be available together with my herb gardening e-book that is coming out soon.

If you’d like to be on the early-bird discount list, please send an email with the subject heading ‘Herb Gardening ebook’. Thanks.

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11 Autumn Jobs For The Herb Garden | Mad About Herbs | Garden Herbs
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