Yesterday, finally, I got the chance to work in my herb garden.
My yard is a messy tangle of random plants that receive minimal tending, but my herb garden is the one area upon which I lavish love and care. The garden was in place when we moved into this house six years ago, but since then I have moved, replanted, and altered its makeup dramatically. Only two of the original plants remain: oregano and tarragon. I have a few other perennial herbs: chives, lovage, lavender (not that I cook with it, but it sure smells nice), mint, thyme, dill, and sage. Each year I have to plant new crops of rosemary, parsley, and basil. I waited so long this year to get the basil because poor tender, fragile basil is killed by frost and we have certainly had our share of spring frosts, haven't we?
I paid my annual visit to the Potting Shed downtown and picked up this year's batch of basil, parsley, and rosemary. I scored an excellent, already well-established upright rosemary plant and flat-leaf parsley, about which I am particularly excited, because I use tons of flat-leaf parsley. The parsley went into the ground and the basil and rosemary went into their own individual pots. I would like to bring the basil and rosemary indoors for the winter which is why I keep planting them in movable pots but each year I neglect to do so before the plants are done in by frost.
I weeded and cleared the bed of old leaves and other detritus, moved the sage plants to the middle of the bed where there is more room, and watered the crap out of everything.
The lovage is already four feet high. That plant is insane! I inherited a lone lovage sprig from a plant at my parents' that had grown to large-shrub proportions and it has done quite well for itself. I just wish I knew of more dishes that used lovage. Currently I only have one, new potato salad with lovage and mustard.
The oregano is busy expanding to fill the known universe, as usual. I swear, that plant would take over the entire garden and adjacent lawn if it could. That and the mint. Those pesky mint runners are everywhere. I guess I will have to start using it in mint tea or gin smashes or something. Speaking of a gin smash, it is one mighty fine drink on a hot summer day!
Lastly, the yard contains a great abundance of catnip, which is of no use to me but is greatly loved by our two cats, resulting in the cat insanity visible here: