A Wee Herbal Garden Still Remains

How could such sweet and wholesome hours be reckoned but with herbs and flowers? ~Andrew Marvel

You may remember in 2021, I wrote about losing my garden, and especially my perennial herb garden. The first garden I planted during our first spring in our new home in 2020. And it grew beautifully (see in picture above) in a sunny spot near the sidewalk making the lavender, sage, tarragon, thyme, butterfly weed, chives and Italian parsley very happy. By the second year they were all growing in beautifully. Huge, bountiful, spectacular. Just as I imagined. And then I had to get rid of it all.

So I have been trying to grow some perennial herbs in pots since spring 2022 (above picture is last year) with not much luck. Sage, Italian parsley and thyme grow some, but not a lot to harvest. And they did not come back. Although I had luck this past winter with thyme coming back in a west facing pot out back.

In a few pots I have made some adjustments to what I am growing. In the front pot I now have Italian parsley and oregano. The rabbits may be fooled by the oregano to not find the parsley.

I moved sage to the back pot with thyme instead of the front pot. Both woody requiring less water.

I will say that lavender does grow very well in the stones flanked by sidewalks and driveways. Great hot spots. So much so that even if I have to cut out dead parts of the plant, it fills in quickly and flowers for months.

Even my neighbor’s little empty stone garden now has lavender growing in it. I put one plant in a pot that sat on the stones and dropped seed in 2021. By 2022, we had little starters.

Then they grew into beginning plants with some flowers.

Now this year they have doubled.

And more baby plants are growing nearby. I have a feeling this whole side along my driveway may become a beautiful row of lavender. Not anything I would ever complain about as I adore lavender.

Mint is interesting to grow in pots. I have always grown my mints in pots and then grow bags since we moved here. Peppermint came back in the grow bags, but not the spearmint.

This year the rabbits tried digging in the peppermint grow bags to make nests (very strange). And in doing this, they dug out lots of roots giving the mint room to grow in. Peppermint will fill in the grow bag by fall which is great because I harvest it all season for peppermint tea.

I am trying plain spearmint this year, with smaller leaves, to see if it will be hardy enough in a big pot to come back. As you can see it is netted. Not because the critters will eat it. They won’t. But I add annual flower seeds (zinnia, cosmos, nasturtiums, nigella, calendula) in pots, especially out back. To keep Ms. Chipmunk from finding and taking the seed, I have to net or cover the pots. This pot has cosmos growing around the mint.

There is precious little to cut for a vase this week. Annual flowers grown from seed just planted. It has been too cold to start the planting until now. Flowering bulbs are done, and native perennials not quite ready to flower. Soon I will be planting up other smaller containers. Until then I thought could cut more pansies.

But instead my husband went to the grocery store and brought back more flowers. This week more double peony tulips but in yummy muted purple.

Next week there may be a few more flowers to look at in the garden, and a few more to cut finally.

With this week’s lovely vase, I am linking in to the wonderful meme, In A Vase On Monday, at Rambling in the Garden.

All the pictures shared in this post were taken with my Nikon Coolpix or iPhone camera, and manipulated on my iPhone using the apps, Pixlr and Prisma. You can follow my progress with #the100dayproject in my Instagram and Facebook feed.

All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Gardens Eye View, 2010-2023.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.

18 Replies to “A Wee Herbal Garden Still Remains”

  1. It still seems such a misguided ruling by your housing association or whatever it was, but I am glad you are doing your next to work round it and establish the best ways of growing what you would like to grow. I love to see double tulips and those in your vase are such a lovely colour

    1. Yes very misguided Cathy by the corporation that owns the rental property. As the garden re-establishes itself I think it will be beautiful. Next up are filling containers with annuals while the flower seeds begin to grow.

  2. I still find your management development’s extreme position on personal landscaping perplexing. Developing some standards to preserve the development’s “curb appeal” may have a point but they took it to a draconian level. I’m glad you’ve made the best of things. I wish the local rabbits would eat the mint planted in my garden by the prior owner. I’ve been trying to remove it since I moved in and the voracious rabbits have never even touched what pops up whenever I’m not watching. Lavenders are a stealthy lot – long may they thrive!

    1. Rabbits are perplexing for sure. And lavender is a most beloved and welcome plant especially because critters leave it alone and I can bury my face in it. Thanks for your supportive words.

  3. A lavender hedge would be a fragrant delight. Many years ago I stayed in a B and B where they dried their bed linen over lavender bushes in the sun.

  4. Lovely to see some herbs managed to survive the winter, and the lavender is great Donna! And your hubby is so good at choosing flowers!

  5. I’m glad you’re finding ways to garden! I’ve had good luck with tarragon coming back in pots. I once had thriving lavender in a hot area flanked by a stone patio. Then one spring it rained, and rained, and rained . . . It was too much for the poor lavender which never came back. I miss it.

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