5 Basic Herbs to Grow ...

Whether you are thinking about filling a large space with savory herbs or growing only a few in a planter in the kitchen window, there are some basic herbs that are useful in just about any recipe. Here are 5 basic herbs to grow for culinary purposes.

5. Lemon Balm

I like using this herb on my chicken when I bake it in the oven. This herb is also great for pest control. It has a lemony scent, so placing some fresh stalks of lemon balm under the couch cushions keeps fleas from finding a home there. It can also be dried and sprinkled on the carpets to add a fresh scent when vacuuming.

4. Catnip

This herb makes an excellent tea for sipping at the end of a hard day. Cats go crazy with this herb, but it has the opposite effect on humans. A mug of catnip tea relaxes me and even makes me a bit sleepy, which helps me get a better rest at night.

3. Oregano

I make my own spaghetti sauce and I love adding tons of oregano to it. It seems to be the perfect herb for adding lots of flavor to the sauce. A few leaves of oregano are sometimes just enough for boosting the flavor of a small batch of spaghetti sauce.

2. Thyme

I adore the tiny flowers that burst into bloom on this wonderful herb, which gives it a dual purpose. Thyme is an excellent addition to recipes with roasted meat and it can be left to bloom to add some color to the herb garden.

1. Basil

I like to use this herb in a number of recipes, especially when the recipe involves pasta. Making pesto with basil is easy and I can freeze it in ice cube trays, then transfer the frozen pesto cubes to a freezer baggie for later use. Basil also makes an excellent tea for when you are feeling under the weather.

These are the basic herbs I like to make sure to plant in my garden each spring. Some of them I keep well into the winter, so that I can have fresh herbs as long as possible. What types of herbs do you use the most when you cook at home?

Top Photo Credit: Joi