Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

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neopkwaii
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Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby neopkwaii » 19 Dec 2013, 19:00

I am looking to build/cultivate a medicinal herbal garden. I have been pining over herbal knowledge for quite a few years now, and finally am committed to getting my hands dirty.

I have a 5x15 foot box under my window I could plant in, or even start a palate garden.

My "goal" is to begin using plants for healthcare, switching from "drugs" to herbs. Teas, salves, decoctions, tinctures. My knowledge at the moment is pretty limited, and my application thereof even moreso.

I know that I want to plant Lemon Balm-but where else can I start?

I have been researching for hours on end, checking out susunweed.com, achs online classes, SacredPlantTraditions' 1 weekend a month intensive program....free online classes-but I'm finding I need a more...directed...approach. There is knowledge out there-it's just not streamlined in a way that I can begin using it.

Can anyone point me into a direction?

....I'm wondering if I just need to wait until Ovate.....
:acorns: Adrianna :acorns:
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DaRC
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Re: Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby DaRC » 20 Dec 2013, 13:51

Just a few thoughts around structure and the types of herbs - some need very poor, well drained soil usually the mediterranean ones such as lavendar, rosemary, thyme and fennel.
Others need richer soil and more water (in my experience) this includes sage, basil, parsley, feverfew, oregano/marjoram and lemon balm.

Some are annual (basil, coriandeer, parsely) others are perennial and some are escapee artists who want to take over the world... I'm looking at you the Mint family :roll:
So I wouldf section it into areas. Also consider how big some plants will get e.g. Lavendar / Rosemary and think how they will shade the other herbs if placed wrongly.
So think about how sunny it's location is and then just start planting some herbs. Maybe grow some Basil on a sunny window sill over the winter. It's all trial and error - you learn more from your mistakes IMHO.
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neopkwaii
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Re: Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby neopkwaii » 20 Dec 2013, 15:56

DaRC:

Thank you for your advice, there are certainly interactions and provisions to keep in mind in planning a garden!

May I inquire how you began? You mention that it's mostly trial & error-but how did you choose the herbs you started with?

I basically have access to the knowledge (books & internet)-but am overwhelmed as to where to begin.

I will certainly be planting basil-I've grown that one for years, and love just running my hands over it ^.^

Thank you for all the assistance;
~Adrianna~
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Reuils
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Re: Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby Reuils » 21 Dec 2013, 23:42

Can I suggest a book ,A Holistic Herbal by David Hoffman .
The tendency when you start is to plant too much,so nothing does well.Read some books decide what essential herbs you want,start small and build up :idea:

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Re: Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby Stone-Singer » 29 Dec 2013, 16:03

Don't be afraid to get it wrong. :) Just find a few herbs you really love the feel and look off and grow them.
I have found over the years that I have been gardening that really, it is just about you and the plants and the relationship you build. Sit quietly with them, ask them what they need and see what they tell you. Maybe start with growing them in separate pots, so you can attend and get to know each one individually. Tune into them, listen to them, trust your intuition. Each plant is different, even if are classed under the same species. Over time you will get to know them and you will build your own knowledge based on experience. When I was blessed with my first garden, I knew nothing about the practical side of growing plants. But just by listening, growing them, changing things if they did not work, my confidence grew. Just have a go! Happy growing! :D

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Re: Advice for Beginning an Herbal Garden

Postby DraecoVocina » 05 Oct 2014, 19:06

One of the best places to start is to also find out the Hardiness of your plant you want to grow (hardiness means where it can grow and under what conditions) this will tell you weither or not you will be able to just plant them in a starting garden or if having them inside is a good idea. Even to the point of a Greenhouse! I have been learning a good deal about the gardening process from my grandpa.

here is a small list of things to think on for setting the rest of the garden.

Hardiness of the plant
lighting the plant typically needs
"Buddy" plants (ones that help instead of hinder the plant)
What pests can eat it and what wont
plant nutrition: This is a biggy. As you progress in this, you will find out the minor nutrients they need as well as the Major ones.

Also dont forget when growing in the long run to rotate the location of the Herbs. We got a hard lesson on that from the dustbowl of what killing the soil does.

For Lemon Balm your hardiness Zone is 7 which is right in between what it needs to be to grow (i.e. zones 5-9)

Rosemary can grow where you are but may need to be brought inside for winter. it could kill the tops of your bushes if left unchecked in winter

Lavender is a lightly shady plant and can survive in your location. in fact if you are able to nurture it you could have a full blown hedge in good time.

I can find out the rest for you if you wish and also see what would be good to have them grow big.

I hope this helps in some way with your garden plans.
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