Gardening with Herbs
June 22, 2012
Herbs are some of my favorite plants. I love their beautiful foliage, their colorful flowers, and their savory flavors. But my favorite thing about herbs is their fragrance! From their leaves to their flowers, herbs are some of the most highly scented plants in the garden. Herbs are valued for their medicinal and therapeutic uses, too.
Most everyone is familiar with the common culinary herbs like basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, and chives because we eat them all the time. There are so many other herbs that you can cook with such as cilantro, summer and winter savory, marjoram, and sage. Using herbs in your recipes reduces the need for salt to flavor food. Recent research is also finding that many herbs have more health benefits than previously thought.
Herbs have been used throughout the ages as medicine. Chamomile, comfrey, horehound, and garlic have been used as remedies for various ailments for centuries. Herbal medicine is becoming more accepted by society. It has been found that there are fewer side effects to herbal remedies than there are from manufactured pharmaceuticals. You should still use caution if you decide to try an herbal remedy since some of them can be potentially dangerous.
The scent of herbs can be invigorating or soothing, uplifting or calming. Of all the herbs I grow, lavender is by far my favorite. I find its fragrance soothing and refreshing, but there are so many other herbs that smell just as good. The mint family has sharp, clean scents, and many culinary herbs are also used in soaps and lotions. There are many titles in the MCPL collection with recipes and instructions for making herbal cosmetics. There are many, many more titles on growing and utilizing herbs of all varieties. So, make sure to include room for herbs in your garden this summer.
Lee's Summit Branch