Herbs

A good time to sow annuals

By Melanie Matthews

Photo: Illustrative image for the 'Herbs' page

Now is a really good time to sow lots of annual herbs.  If you have lots of ‘ends of packets’ left over from last year, just mix them altogether and sow them in seed trays, or if your soil is good enough, straight into the ground.  For example; to get a good colour and texture try a mix of coriander, dill, basil, red orache, endive, mizuna, mibuna, and all the mustards, such as giant red and red frills.  In about four to six weeks you will be picking them and they look great scattered in salads.  Just pinch out the tops, or snip them with a pair of kitchen scissors, this acts as a sort of pruning and you will soon find that after a few days they are ready for harvesting again.

Cut back your evergreen herbs such as thyme, sage and bay and give them a feed with some pelleted chicken manure and you will find they sill soon start to look good again.  Don’t cut into the old wood but look for shoots that are low down the plant that look healthy and cut back to just above the second set of leaves from the bottom – it may look drastic but it will rejuvenate the plant.

If you have large clumps of lemon balm, or chives and oregano then divide these and either replant them or give them to an allotment neighbour.

This page was added by Melanie Matthews on 27/04/2012.