Watching Jamie Oliver cook is so entertaining because he makes it look like a breeze. Simply chop ’em vegetables and pluck the herbs of your choice, marry them in a pot, and voila – a restaurant-worthy dish is ready. That’s the expectation we would have after watching his shows intently (and of course, falling in love with his Brit accent, innit?)
However, in reality, nothing goes as planned. Veggies take a dreadfully long time to wash, cut, peal and cook. Here comes the best part – I don’t have any herb plants in my house, so I have to search for whatever herbs I have chilling in the fridge. Bummer!
And, to my surprise, they have… wilted! I can just hear Jamie saying, “That’s absolutely pathetic!” OK, my bad for not storing them well. So then I have to head all the way to the grocery store just to buy… herbs, in a packet.
This is the part where Jamie would be rolling his eyes a full 360 degrees. It would be gross for him to buy packed herbs for a few reasons – firstly, they’re NOT fresh. Fresh is when you pluck them yourself; and secondly, they’re loaded with pesticides, eww!
So, a recent trip to the grocery store gave me the inspiration to get some easy answers from Google and YouTube on the easiest, simplest and fastest way to grow – my own herbs! It’s actually much simpler than I imagined. It’s as simple as taking the seeds, and putting them in a pot of soil and water.
OK, but if you want them to LIVE, here’s how you can nurture seedlings into becoming full-grown plants:
Step 1: Type Of Herbs
Look into the types of herbs you can grow. First, you have your soft herbs like basil, chives, and coriander, which require a lot of care and attention while they’re being grown because they’re extremely delicate. Then you have your woody herbs, which are thyme, rosemary, and sage. These, too, need to be watered often, as their branches tend to get dry very fast. I would choose soft herbs because I generally use a lot more of them in my cooking.
If you want an easier way out, you can always get potted herbs from a store or nursery.
Step 2: Choose Your Pot
You don’t have to go all fancy and buy Insta-worthy pots for your herbs. Keep it simple by going with what’s practical and suitable. The main thing to look for when choosing the right pot is drainage. Your pot will need access for the water to drain.
Terracotta pots are your best bet, as they have heft, and are appealing as far as looks go! You will have to watch out for them drying up your herbs though, as they tend to conduct heat.
Step 3: H2O And Sunlight
Don’t forget that these tiny pots need adequate amount of water and sunlight to grow healthily. Remember, most herbs do not require much watering, as they could wilt and die. Do a thorough read-up on how much water and sunlight certain herbs need.
Step 4: Give Them Space
Overcrowding your herbs can prevent them from growing healthily. Make sure there’s enough room for each plant to grow efficiently. Also remember to trim them every once in a while, to stop them from flowering. After all, the herbs are what you want, not the flowers, right?
If you follow these simple rules, you will have a collection of fresh herbs with which you will be able to easily cook delicious, flavourful meals.