IN YOUR GAR­DEN

Your taste­buds will love it if you plant these handy herbs near your kitchen

QT Magazine - - AUTUMN GARDENING - WITH TAFE QUEENS­LAND SOUTH WEST HOR­TI­CUL­TURE TEACHER, PAUL LUCK

Ques­tion: What herbs can I plant this time of year in the Ip­swich area?

An­swer: Whether you’re a gourmet cook or an egg-on-toast kind of per­son, fresh herbs make just about ev­ery dish taste bet­ter. If you’re think­ing about plant­ing an herb gar­den, it’s easy to get started. First things first, the weather in Ip­swich this time of year can be a bit un­pre­dictable. Even though it’s fi­nally cool­ing down from sum­mer, we can still ex­pe­ri­ence warm hu­mid days bring­ing se­vere af­ter­noon storms (which cause dam­age to del­i­cate seedlings and herbs). Keep­ing this in mind it is best to sow seeds di­rectly in a shal­low seedling tray or small pots be­fore plant­ing into your herb gar­den. Al­ter­na­tively, you can keep your herbs in small pots on the kitchen win­dowsill for easy ac­cess (just make sure you keep an eye on them). When plant­ing seeds, en­sure the con­tainer is kept in a pro­tected spot with di­rect sun­light, and is moist but not too wet. Seedlings once ger­mi­nated should be thinned out - dis­card any seedlings that may be on the small side and keep those which are much more vig­or­ous in their growth. Typ­i­cally seedlings should be planted into your gar­den or a larger con­tainer when they reach 5–10cm in height or when their true leaves start to ap­pear. Also, be­fore plant­ing make sure you in­cor­po­rate a good qual­ity or­ganic fer­tiliser (like blood and bone).

Herbs you can plant at this time of year in­clude:

◆ Basil ◆ Bay ◆ Chives ◆ Laven­der ◆ Lemon balm ◆ Mint ◆ Pars­ley ◆ Rocket ◆ Rose­mary ◆ Sage ◆ Thyme When plant­ing to make sure you give all seedlings suf­fi­cient space for growth. This space will be de­pen­dent on each va­ri­ety of herb. Mon­i­tor­ing your herbs after plant­ing for pests and dis­eases is also very im­por­tant. Don’t for­get to water your herbs reg­u­larly while they’re grow­ing and you can look for­ward to great pro­duce that will make your meals de­li­cious.

Dis­claimer: The com­ments pro­vided in this ar­ti­cle are gen­eral in na­ture only and are not a sub­sti­tute for pro­fes­sional ad­vice. The au­thor ac­cepts no re­spon­si­bil­ity for any ac­tion taken by a reader in re­la­tion to this ar­ti­cle.

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