You will eat better and even save money by growing herbs indoors -- fresh ingredients for your cold-weather cooking cost next to nothing. An herb garden adds an attractive, economic aspect to the kitchen.
Place your herb containers by the sunniest window you can. Put the die-hard sun lovers in the center and the less demanding off to the sides. Of the five herbs we recommend for indoor culture, oregano requires the most light.
If you don't have an herb garden outdoors, you can start from scratch indoors, despite the fact that icy weather is starting to threaten.
Even in late fall, it's not too late to buy. In many areas of the country, prices are slashed on the last lonely herbs in garden centers. If your local nurseries are shuttered, you can make a quick call to mail-order nurseries and have them ship you a selection. Do make sure they are astute enough not to send your new garden out the door just as a sudden spell of particularly nasty weather strikes.
Shape herbs into a beautiful topiary with these easy steps.
We suggest you go with these five herbs: oregano, chives, mint, rosemary, and thyme. Most cooks use them on a regular basis, and they will actually make it through the winter in your indoor garden. If you're lucky, you can even harden them off and plant them outdoors come spring.
A caution about selecting your herbs: Just because you like to cook with a particular ingredient doesn't mean you can grow that plant indoors. As much as you may love basil, for instance, this herb turns into a sorry specimen after a few weeks cooped up inside.
Chives: Use in salads and sauces or with vegetables. Chocolate mint: Use in teas, soups, and salads. Rosemary: Use with meat, especially lamb. Oregano: Use for sauces, especially Italian cuisine. Thyme: Use with fish and poultry.
Continued on page 2: Digging Perfect Pots