Rosemary

the rosemary is highly aromatic

Cooking applications:

Known as “dew of the sea” in Latin, rosemary is one of the most aromatic and powerful of herbs.

Originating near the Mediterranean, rosemary features needle-like leaves and a pronounced lemon-pine flavor that wonderfully complements focaccia, garlic, pizza, roasted lamb, tomato sauce, garlic, and olive oil.

Caution is needed when adding rosemary to recipes, due to its strong flavor.

Medicinal qualities:

The herb rosemary has several health benefits including improving memory functions. Individuals who have gout or arthritis can rub balm that contains rosemary on painful joints for relief.

Rosemary contains several nutrients including vitamin B, calcium and iron to help individuals have in-proved physical health.

Additional health benefits of the rosemary herb include help avoiding eye cataracts, kidney disease and heart conditions.

Individuals can create a hot beverage from rosemary to assist with the discomfort of nausea or menstrual cramps.

Best Conditions for Growing

Preferred Soil:

Make sure the soil drains well—raised beds work the best. Rosemary grows best in soil that has a pH of 6.5 to 7 and is considered poor to average.

Sunlight Requirements:

Pick a gardening plot that receives lots of sunshine and small amounts of shade for the best results.

Temperature Requirements:

Rosemary can be grown in the ground year-round, even in frost areas.

Tips for Growing

Planting:

Purchase Rosemary plants that have already started growing from a nursery. Avoid buying seeds—they grow very slowly and are difficult to nurture.

If you live in a cold climate, place the Rosemary plant inside of a clay pot with drainage holes in the bottom. Make sure the pot is at least a square foot in size.

Plant the Rosemary plants as soon as the ground thaws. Set the transplants into the ground at the exact same height as they were growing in their nursery pots.

Leave two feet of space remaining around the plants so they have room to grow.

Don’t plant Rosemary and plan to move it later—it doesn’t do well when transplanted.

Watering:

Water the plants often, but make sure the soil doesn’t get too wet. Make compost tea to help the plants grow better if they need the extra nutritional boost.

Harvesting:

Cut the leaves and sprigs off anytime you need them for cooking. Even if Rosemary isn’t your favorite garden herb, consider growing it to help keep garden pests away.

The plant naturally repels bean beetles and cabbage moths.

Sage

the sage herb has narrow leaves

Cooking applications:

A native to the Mediterranean coast, sage features long, narrow leaves with a fuzzy texture and flavor that reminds of cedar, eucalyptus, lemon and mint—all at once.

While Italians love sage with their veal, the French add it to cured meats, sausages, and stuffing dishes.

In the United States, cooks are most likely to add sage to turkey and dressing. Caution is in order, as too much sage can overpower a dish.

Medicinal qualities:

Sage has a strong distinct flavor and fragrance that creates an intense essential oil. Sage leaf extract is used to reduce high levels of lipids in the blood that cause increased incidences of cardiovascular disease.

Researchers have discovered that sage extract can help manage Alzheimer’s disease. In addition, sage oil can reduce symptoms of muscle spasms, bacterial infections, excessive perspiration, fungal conditions and menopausal discomfort.

Sage tea also offers anti-inflammatory properties to stop the pain of arthritis.

Best Conditions for Growing

Preferred Soil:

Find some rich potting soil and use it to till a six inch tall pot. Moisturize the soil by adding a quart of water and letting the liquid drain through.

Sunlight Requirements:

Place the sage pot in an open area that doesn’t receive direct sunlight. Too much sunshine can completely dry out the potting soil.

Temperature Requirements:

Ideal planting temperature would be 60-70 Fahrenheit.

Tips for Growing

Planting:

Place a dozen seeds on top of the rich potting soil. Spread them evenly apart.

Be careful not to add more seeds than you intended—this is easy to do since they are so small.

Sprinkle a very light layer of dirt over the seed, just barely covering it.

Use a covering of plastic food wrap to help keep moisture and warmth inside of the pot.

The extra heat will allow the seeds to germinate extra fast.

When the seedlings are one inch tall, remove the plastic covering.

Carefully remove the plants and transplant them in a sunny area that drains well. Give the plants two inches of space between each other.

Watering:

Check the soil in the sage pot once a week to make sure the soil is keeping moist if the dirt in the pot feels too dry, add a cup of water. Continue keeping the pot covered with the food wrap.

Harvesting:

Pick the leaves as desired about 75 days after transplanting into your garden. Don’t cut back more than half the plant or it will stop growing.