Starting an in-ground Herb Garden in Zone 8 - Knowledgebase Question

Savannah, GA (Zone 8B)
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Question by catmap
November 18, 2006
Instead of buying cut fresh herbs from the grocery store, I have started buying herb plants... with intent to plant, but haven't gotten around to it. I've moved north from Zone 10 and don't know how they will all survive the winter outside... after al my local Home Depot is only carrying rosemary right now - the rest of the herbs are gone. I have 2 plant areas under the eaves of the house that are away from any areas that may have pesticides or fertilizers applied - one that gets sun from the east and one that gets sun from the north. I have rosemary, cilantro, mint, chives, and catnip. I seem to never manage well with cilantro - I have it proped up right now. Do I plant now? Do I plant them all together or put some in one plant area vs the other? Both areas have rocks as

Answer from NGA
November 18, 2006
I applaud your efforts to grow your own herbs. Some herbs are annuals, others are perennials, and all are tender plants so if your garden gets frost, you'll want to plant them in containers and keep them indoors for the winter months. Herbs grow best with full sun (or on a sunny windowsill). All of your herbs should grow fine in containers so long as they get plenty of bright light, fresh air and are not too crowded in their containers. They can take some crowding so long as they don't have to compete too much for light, water and fertilizer. Use a rich, humusy potting soil that will hold water well. The basil and cilantro should be treated as annuals, and replaced with new plants or seeds after harvest. The rest are perennials, so just keep them trimmed to preserve their shape and size. Mints, especially will spread invasively, so you may want to put them in a separate container.

Next spring you can start an outdoor herb garden. Choose the sunniest spot you have and plant them in well draining soil (or keep them in containers filled with potting soil). Then, when you need some fresh herbs for a recipe, you can simply snip off what you want.

Best wishes with your herb garden!

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