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Old 07-18-2009, 02:47 PM   #1
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Herb Garden

I've just started a herb garden which has lemon balm, tarragon,
parsley and chives.

I live in the south of England which has temperate, moist
climate.

I like spicy food and strong flavours. Has anyone any
suggestions for new herbs - preferably herbs that
spread easily - as I have plenty of room in the garden.

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Old 07-18-2009, 02:50 PM   #2
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Mint grows like crazy, and there are several types.
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Old 07-18-2009, 05:17 PM   #3
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Wyogal - Please don't tell folks to grow mint without listing its many caveats - LOL!!!

If you want to grow mint, either do it in containers or with a deep strong barrier to the rest of your property. Otherwise, you'll end up like me - pulling up "mutt mint" (aka nasty unnamed mint) for TWELVE YEARS planted by the original owner of my farm. Mint reproduces by seeds, rooted stems, & underground runners. It becomes an alien force if you don't want it where it wants to go - which is EVERYWHERE.

In addition, when buying mint, make SURE you pinch off a bit & do a smell/taste test. Mints have become very hybridized these days since the 1970's herb craze that many are just "mutts" - nasty smelling & tasting with no culinary or ornamental virtues whatsoever.
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Old 07-18-2009, 06:11 PM   #4
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I guess that's what I meant by "grows like crazy" and "there are several types."
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Old 07-19-2009, 08:19 AM   #5
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Many thanks for the information. I will
have to get hold of some mint from a
neighbour.
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Old 07-19-2009, 08:53 AM   #6
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My first experience with mint was at my grandparents house in NY. Grandma planted some mint and it made its way over to the cement stoop against the house. The mint started growing through the cement. It actually cracked the cement stairs. No matter what they did they could not get rid of it.

I love mint because it smells and tastes so good and is so easy to grow and upkeep. I have a half whiskey barrel that I use for it so it does not overgrow my yard. I have a number of varieties from chocolate mint to orange mint to ginger mint to spearmint to peppermint all growing together.

Mint is great to use in drinks or salads or on some meats. When the lawn service is coming to cut the lawn I like to sprinkle some mint leaves around the lawn so when they mow it smells great outside. Of course I do not just do that with mint. I do that with most of the herbs I grow. It makes the yard smell amazing.

Someone here (I forgot who so my apologies) had a great suggestion if you wanted to grow mint in your garden. They suggested taking a container you would like to grow it in and burying that in the garden and growing the mint in that. That way the mint would be contained and not spread, but you would have it along with everything else if you wanted.

Another herb suggestion for you wb_uk would be oregano. Oregano is very hearty and will come back year after year. It is a strong flavor anda delicious one. There are quite a few varieties. I have Greek oregano growing that my brother started from seed about 6 years ago. It is my favorite plant in my garden. It is another one I like to sprinkle on the yard before they mow.

My last suggestion would be thyme. I think that would work well for you as well.
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Old 07-22-2009, 04:40 PM   #7
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I have herb garden in Thailand, my hometown, and I grew up Lemongrass, goat pepper very well. Now, I'm in Los Angeles, and I've tried to do herb garden here, but I failed!
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:23 PM   #8
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I don't have mint but I have some kind of thyme that is taking over my herb garden, though, it might be oregano. Anyways......

I'm starting a new lasagna garden for herbs behind the garage, getting full sun-south side.

When the boys were little we were camping up north WI clearing some paths through some wooded acreage down to the creek. When they got to one section, they could smell where the mower/brush mower had cut--some mint. Hey,whats that cool smell!

So being the industrious children they were, they gathered handfuls of this mint, it was spearmint. They thought it was the neatest thing to make things from nature (like berry drinks from the yard--cranberry, currant--just like Kool aid or soda, like the other kids had).....
So I steeped the leaves of spearmint in boiling water from the campfire and then after a couple hours, added sugar, and we enjoyed mint iced tea. It was always a joy to do things like that with the boys when they were exploring nature. And they would laugh and they would giggle.....
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:31 PM   #9
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If it's taking over it's much more likely to be oregano than thyme. Unlike thyme, oregano can easily become VERY invasive if not kept severely in check. It not only self-sows, but also spreads via a shallow running root system. In addition. any stems that touch the ground for any length of time will also take root.
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Old 07-23-2009, 07:54 PM   #10
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Hey girlfriend, I think the same thing, it's oregano.......though my friend has BETTER smelling oregano and mine is really just so earthy, she told me it was probably thyme...but it might not be....I thought it was oregano taking over from the beginning.
It's so many years old, it's probably not a pure breed....but yes invasive.
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