Starting the Herbs

Starting the Herbs

Herbs can be grown from seeds, cuttings or roots.

Seeds
If you know someone who grows herbs from seed, see if you can beg or barter a
few seeds from them – why buy a whole packet if you can get just enough for your
needs? Seeds are easy to work with. You can start seeds growing in trays filled
with potting mix – try using egg cartons, paper cups, cut-off milk cartons, or
plastic trays (try take-away food trays, or the kind you buy cakes, etc, in).
Keep the soil damp and preferably have the trays somewhere where they will catch
a great deal of light and be kept warm. Transplant them into a larger container
after the second set of leaves has formed and the seedlings look strong.

Cuttings
If you know someone with herb plants, perhaps they would let you have a few
cuttings. Herbs that grow well from cuttings include rosemary, lavender, mint,
thyme, scented geraniums and oregano. Take the cutting in spring or (preferably)
summer, using a section of stem without flowers which is at least a few inches
long. The stem should be firm enough that it can’t be merely pinched off. A side
branch growing from the main stem of the plant is best. Use shears to remove the
stem, and make a slanting cut below the lowest set of leaves. If you can take a
cutting which has a ‘foot’ on it, so much the better – this means that there
will be more space for the stem to suck up water and nutrients from the soil.
Remove the lower sets of leaves, leaving a reasonable section of bare stem –
this is where the roots will form. However, you should leave a few sets of
leaves at the top of the cutting. Poke a hole gently into the potting mix and
insert the bare stem of the cutting, then press the rest of the potting mix
firmly around it. Water well, and after the first watering keep the soil moist
but not completely saturated. The cutting will be ready to transplant when it
has started to grow more leaves, or when it has formed enough roots that it
resists being pulled out of the ground when you tug very gently on it.

Roots
Certain herbs grow best from root pieces – comfrey and ginger being good
examples. Take a healthy-looking ‘finger’ of root, plant it in the soil and keep
it well-watered and in a warm sunny place. The root will grow into a healthy
plant, which in turn can have more root fingers taken from it when it’s mature.

Care of Container Plants
I suggest you buy, beg or borrow a good book on caring for herbs in your own
country, as what you should do with them does vary greatly depending on
conditions.

Enhanced by Zemanta
Advertisements

Calendar of the Sun for May 27th

Calendar of the Sun

Media Ver

Color: Green
Element: Earth
Altar: Upon a green cloth set growing herbs and flowers in pots, a pitcher of rainwater, small dishes of late-sowed seeds such as lettuce (as many as there are people), a flower wreath, and a single green candle.
Offerings: Seeds to be planted in the garden.
Daily Meal: Vegetarian

Media Ver Invocation

Earth, you have awakened to our touch!
The winds have stirred you,
The rain has nourished you,
The sun has opened your eyes.
Your million mouths open
On the unfolded leaves of every tree.
We glory in your abundance,
In the dance of your youth,
And we dance for your brilliant life
And your new season.
Yet now is the time when the real work begins.
If we would keep what we have sown,
We must not stop here,
But we must labor for the sustenance
Of our creation, as it has always been.
For the first growth is a miracle from the Gods,
But the second growth is the miracle unseen,
From the labor of our hands,
Which is also sacred.

Chant:
Green growing
Green Man knowing
Path of striving
Way of opening

(Each takes a pot of seeds and goes to the garden, and hoes or otherwise prepares a space for planting, and then plants their seeds, chanting while doing so. The pitcher of rainwater is carried out and ritually poured onto the seeds. Weeding should also be done at this time, and the care for plants that have already broken the surface.)

[Pagan Book of Hours]