Campus News

Home herb gardens are easy to grow

Paul Thomas, a UGA horticulturist, says that herbs “are actually fairly easy to grow in Georgia. We have the perfect temperature, the perfect sunlight and acceptable humidity.”

To master herb growing, he recommends to:

  1. Plant herbs in a raised bed so the soil will drain very easily.
  2. Water herbs thoroughly when they start flagging. Never allow them to go more than two weeks without water.
  3. Always plant herbs in full sun.
  4. Never crowd an herb garden. Plant herbs a foot apart so air can move between them.
  5. Never apply full-strength fertilizers. If the package says 1 pound per 100 square feet, use half. Fertilize minimally—once at the beginning of the growing season, four weeks later and then again another four weeks later (about July). Follow treatments with a thorough watering.
  6. Always harvest herbs in the morning.
  7. Use a hose, not pesticides. If you find bugs on your herbs at 7 a.m., use a water hose and apply a spray from the side. The sideways water stream will wash the bugs off, and most bugs never get a chance to return.
  8. Leave the black and green and yellow striped caterpillars on fennel and dill. Keeping the larva on fennel will result in butterflies later in the summer.
  9. Don’t let weeds crowd herbs out.