Saturday, April 10, 2010

Herbal overkill

This year I'm finding myself with some time to devote to my gardening. I have always loved my vegetable garden but the last few years I've not had time to do much with it. It's been a get the dirt worked, throw some plants and seeds in, and hope and pray that I have time to harvest and use some of it before weeds take over or fall comes kind of venture. I've not been very happy about it either as my family will attest to. To me if I can't open a jar of green beans that I've had to can the previous summer in January, I get upset. I think it's got something to do with the fact that a can of green beans cost upwards of a buck at the grocery store and I have to use at least 2 per meal, and me knowing I can pressure can my own green beans that taste much better. Same goes for tomatoes, carrots, peppers, corn and whatever else has struck my fancy to grow and preserve for use in the off season months.

Anyways with the recent departure of my poor X this year I find that I don't have to work a second job anymore. In all honesty I'm not upset about no more 65 hr work weeks. After almost 3 years that was getting pretty old. Ok so I didn't work that many hours every week, but it's a pretty good average. God bless which ever bureaucrat that came up with the idea of Social Security, and thank God that the X actually worked enough to have the credits so that the kids can draw off what he paid in.

Anyways, back to what I started to blog about, I want to plant an herb garden this year. Out here in BFE finding the fresh herbs I want without having to drive an hour or two round trip is next to impossible. Last year I was needing cilantro for a salsa recipe that I came across and when I asked the two grocery stores here in town about it they looked at me like I was from Mars. I asked at Wal-Mart and they were able to get it but I didn't like their price tag at all. Luckily I was bitching about it one day and one of the friends I was bitching to just happened to have some plants in her handy dandy herb garden. She took pity on me and I ended up with so much cilantro I ended up making salsa for what seemed to be a tri-county area.

So now I've made up my mind to plant an herb garden. Where I'm going to put it is still kind of up in the air. I'm trying the companion planting thing this year with my veggie garden so I'm sure that will factor into my herb placement. That will help simplify matters in the location aspect I'm sure. What would really help would be if I could figure out what herbs to plant. I know cilantro, dill, parsley, chives, basil, oregano off the top of my head. I know there are about a thousand other useful herbs out there that I would use if I had them planted, but can I think of them? Nope, can't think of what they would be to save my life. So me being me I automatically think Google is the answer to my herb questions. BWAHAHAHAHAHA that didn't work out so well. I came up with all kinds of herbal type answers from medicinal herbs (which is a great idea but not where I want to head quite yet) to all kinds of pages devoted to "the top 5 herbs to start your herb garden with". There seems to be no happy medium in my herb idea quest. It's either a list 2 miles long, or a list of what I already know I want. I found all kinds of spiffy pages devoted to how to grow them for beginners, but I'm a wee bit past that part as I've grown those top 5 herbs in the past.

I guess the logical next idea would be to go through all my recipes and see what herbs are featured and draw a list from there....this should be an interesting journey in horticulture to say the least. If I'm not seen for a few weeks just Google "herb list" and I'm sure you'll find me.

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