Each week we have the opportunity to harvest beautiful, fragrant herbs to enhance our cooking. Harvesting each herb takes some care and attention. Here are essential tips to make sure the herb plants thrive and remain available to all sharers throughout the season:
Harvest the plants evenly
People tend to harvest only from the front of each row, resulting in a few plants becoming over harvested. Walk a few steps further, to the middle or end of each row, and snip your share from the larger plants.
Include the flowers
The flowers on herb plants are always edible and we encourage you to harvest these along with the leaves.
Follow the directions on the chalkboards
We’re working on making all our signage in the culinary herb garden more clear, but in the meantime, the chalkboard at the corner of the Culinary Herb Garden nearest the greenhouse provides whatever special directions we have for harvesting herbs during any given week. If there are no special directions, use the following guidelines.
- Marjoram, oregano, savory, garlic chives, thyme, cilantro, and dill: cut stems one third of the way from the top of the plant.
- Shiso, sage, and all basils: Cut just the top leaf cluster, you will see underneath it that small leaves are growing which will now grow and branch out, making the plant bushy
- Parsley: Take a close look at the plant from which you are harvesting to ensure it is a good size to harvest from. Harvest the outer leaves only, and always ensure that at least half the plant is left.
Always use scissors
Using scissors will ensure that the plants are not damaged.
Bringing Your Children?
They must be supervised at all times. We have lost several plants in the past couple of weeks because children have pulled the entire plants out of the ground. This means a loss for everyone.
By following these guidelines, we’ll ensure that everyone is able to enjoy our herbs all season long.
—Sara and Christine