JULY IN THE HERB GARDEN
Basil should now be up and producing in abundance, so make the most of the handfuls of leaves to make fresh pestos. If you don’t have your own plants, divide up supermarket pots of basil and plant them into fresh compost in sunny containers. Basil wants heat but also likes to be well watered, ideally early in the day.
Herbs such as mint, thyme and oregano benefit from being harvested, so use them while they are at their best. Always harvest just the tips: this is the freshest, loveliest growth, and by doing this you encourage the plant to grow bushy rather than leggy.
Don’t miss the flowers for a sweeter, more honeyed version of the leaf. Sage, oregano, thyme, basil and of course lavender all flower over the summer and can be used in sweet dishes as well as savoury.
While its candied stems pair nicely with summer fruits, lovage itself looks striking in a flowerbed or as a cut flower, too