Herbs are a wonderful treat that adds to the enjoyment of life. Flowers not only improve the aesthetic appeal of a garden, but they also give flavour to cooking and fragrance to the air we breathe. Herb gardens were common in George Washington’s day, and they were used for everything from cooking to making teas to treating illnesses. That method is gradually making a comeback.
Spaghetti gardens are among the most common types of kitchen gardens. Planting herbs like parsley, garlic, basil, bay laurel, and oregano is easy for anybody with a sunny yard or window box. All the herbs you need for authentic Italian cooking may be grown in a compact garden. You may even grow them year-round on a sunny window sill and use them whenever you like.
Let’s get a closer inspection of the herbs in the spaghetti garden:
You may keep oregano around year after year since it serves as a ground cover. In a single season, oregano can send up shoots as tall as six feet. Oregano can be trained to stay compact by being cut back and bunched. Place it on the south side of your garden, where it will get plenty of sunlight and the light, thin soil it prefers. The plants are ready to harvest after they reach a height of 4-5 inches.
The top third of the plant should be pinched off, right above where the leaves converge. The tastiest and most potent component of the plant is the young leaves, which are also more potent when dried than when fresh. Leaves can be dried by laying them out in the sun on a newspaper or a drying screen until they crumble. Its flavor won’t fade for a long time.
Bay leaves give soups, stews, and spaghetti sauce a welcome kick of flavor. The bay laurel is a little tree that can be grown in a pot because it only needs about a foot of space to flourish each year. Leave the container outside if you live in a temperate region, but bring the tree within for the winter if you live in an area where the temperature drops below 25 degrees.
After the first year, you might never need to buy more basil because it readily self-seeds. Basil comes in a wide variety of flavors and aromas, but they all have a need for regular pinching back to keep them from becoming lanky and unwieldy. When the plants are between 6 and 8 inches tall, harvesting can begin. The top third of the plant should be pinched off, right above where the leaves converge. Don’t let your flowers go to seed without pinching off the buds first. A community may get along with only six to eight plants of basil.
You can grow garlic in just about any soil. Split a garlic clove in half lengthwise, and plant each half two to four inches deep in soil that is not too heavy. Keep the watering light and enjoy the growth.
When the leaf tips become brown, it’s time to harvest, but you shouldn’t allow the plant to go to bloom. Simply use bulbs that have been dug up. Take one or two of the cloves from each bulb and plant them elsewhere to maintain a steady supply.
In terms of consumption, parsley is the most popular herb worldwide. There are straight (Italian) and wavy varieties. They add a welcome dimension of flavor to everything from sauces to robust stews. Slices of it can be found in a variety of dishes, including soups, salad dressings, and garnishes. Parsley enhances the dish’s nutritional value and aesthetic appeal subtly.
Taste the dish’s other components. Parsley is a biennial plant, meaning it only blooms once every two years. It does better under partial shade and regular watering on hot, sunny days. To encourage the growth of new leaves and branches, pinch back older stems until they are close to the soil.
If you want to cook like an Italian, the first step is to learn how to grow your own tomatoes.