Potting mix 4.99 | Aimers Organic seeds 2.69 | 4″ sage 2.49
When planning and seeding a garden, one of the first things we should ask ourselves is why should we do it? When investing so much time, love and effort into anything, isn’t it nice knowing that it’s going to give back, whether it be esthetically, mentally or physically. So when asking ourselves, why AM I going out of my way to care for all these plants? Here are only a few reasons why starting with herbs is beneficial in so many different ways.
Warmer days are ahead of us and if you’re like me your already searching for some sort of life and greenery that you can add outside despite these crazy temperatures. Herbs are the perfect option to not only add greenery to an otherwise empty space this time of the season but also provide you with so many useful purposes as the summer and even colder seasons approach us.
What’s nice about herbs is they are typically very low maintenance and keep giving back harvest after harvest. Whether you enjoy a warm cup of tea, soothing baths, flavourful dishes, or even just a fresh scent to brush by in your back yard, a variety of herbs is just what you need to sustain all those feel-good senses.
4″ Homegrown herbs 2.49 | Freeman herbs 3.99
Did you know thyme carries so many benefits other than being delicious when added to dishes? Here are a few benefits when introducing thyme into your daily living.
- Fights sore throat- Thyme is one of the strongest oils and is a natural antimicrobial making it a serious weapon against a sore throat.
- Boosts your mood-carvacrol, found in thyme has mood-boosting effects and also exhibits antitumour properties, fighting cancerous cells.
- Blood pressure and cholesterol levels- Thyme produces antihypertensive activity, which makes it a great herbal choice for anyone suffering from high blood pressure
Sleger’s Organic basil 4.00
Basil is by far my personal favourite and most used herb in the kitchen. It is always displayed on my counter so it is easy to grab and so I can keep an eye on it for any sign of growth. Once I find my plant is becoming tall and branchy, I pinch it back just below its top layer of leaves where a set of two new baby leaves are emerging, rather than letting it go to seed. Constantly pruning your basil from the top and watering regularly, making sure it is well-drained, is a sure way to have a bushy round plant that will last months to come.
Easy Basil Pesto Recipe
- 2 cups basil firm packed
- ½ cup parmesan or romano cheese, grated
- ¼ cup pine nuts walnuts or almonds
- 1 large garlic clove quartered
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ¼ cup olive oil
- Pulse basil in a food processor with olive oil until a fine paste.
- Slowly add the remaining ingredients (from the recipe below) in the order of the recipe and continue to pulse until smooth.
- Scrape down the sides of the food processor as needed
You know that feeling of craving something just because you know you can’t have it? I have never been a big drinker, maybe a social mixed drink here and there on a special occasion, but it seems like every pregnancy a cold fresh drink is the one thing I crave. I’m currently 17 weeks with my 3rd baby and with the warmer temperatures ahead of us I have been experimenting with some new virgin drink concoctions and adding small clippings of fresh herbs is the perfect surprise in every drink so far.
Strawberries 5.50 | Sleger’s basil 4.00
Pomegranate Basil Mojito
- 5 whole fresh basil leaves
- 2 Tablespoons of pomegranate juice
- Juice of 1/2 lime or lemon
- 1 Tablespoon of maple syrup
- 1-ounce white rum (optional)
- soda water
- sprigs of basil
- pomegranate seeds or raspberries for garnish
- Tear up the basil leaves and place them in a tall glass.
- Use a wooden spoon or “muddler” to gently crush the basil. This releases the flavour from the leaves.
- Add pomegranate juice, lime or lemon juice, maple syrup and rum (if you are using it).
- Stir to blend in the maple syrup.
- Fill the glass with ice.
- Add soda.
- Garnish with a sprig of basil and a few pomegranate seeds or raspberries
- Serve it with a straw to prevent the leaves from ending up in your mouth.
Though herbs can be used fresh, just by simply chopping them small to release the flavours, a nice way to preserve them for the winter months when they aren’t so readily available, is by drying them. When your plant is ready to be harvested, simply prune the stem from the base removing any dead leaves. Air drying is best used on low moisture herbs such as oregano, rosemary and dill. Tie roughly 5 stems together from the base and hang in a cool dry space for over a week. Once fully dried, herbs are best stored in an airtight glass container.
Bay leaves 9.99 | Local focaccia bread 8.00
Fresh salad, using locally grown crunchy veggies is our must-have to pair with anything my husband slaps on the BBQ. One of Annas bestsellers is their Garlic and Dill dressing. If you haven’t tried it, it’s a must! I admit I’m not a huge fan of dill. Whenever I smell dill it brings me back to when I was a little girl pulling these big juicy caterpillars off of my mom’s dill plants. BUT, this dressing is the sweetest, freshest addition to any salad cravings that the summer months require.
Garlic and dill dressing 8.50
Here’s another salad favourite that uses all the Leamington staples. Together in a bowl, I mix chopped cucumber, mixed cherry tomatoes, red pepper, onion, chopped parsley, feta (of course), noodles and greek dressing. This salad paired with homemade gyros is a big hit with the kids and anyone else we may have over for dinner.
Although food dishes and teas take a lot of recognition when it comes to using fresh herbs, there are so many medicinal purposes that herbs offer. Drying and bundling them into smudge sticks, sprinkling them into homemade candles, or mixing them into Epsom salts or soaps are also great ways to make use of all their benefits. Researching essential oils and seeing how they abstract all their useful properties is a great way of learning all the uses and purposes of each herb.
4″ Homegrown herbs 2.49 | Freeman herbs 3.99
When experimenting in your garden why not start with plants that you can use. Flowering annuals and tropical beauties are wonderful and please the eye for the time being, but adding plants such as herbs to your landscape or container gardens is a sure way to not only add natural beauty to your space but promise to give back no matter the season.