Mar 17, 2011

'Go Green' for St. Patrick's Day Project

We're all relatively food literate these days thanks to the Jamie's, Gordon's & Nigella's of the World.

Every week, each magazine has so many recipe pages you'd be forgiven for asking "where have all the adverts gone?"

It's no longer a simple case of Roast Chicken or Fish and Chips for Dinner. Now it's 'Roast Garlic and Mint Crusted Lamb with Mint and Tarragon Jersey Royals' or 'Hazelnut and Pecan Nut Roast with a Chive, Thyme and Parmesan Sauce'.

Do these recipe writers get paid by the word?

It does sound nice though.

So where do I come in? Well, I may not be able to help you successfully rear a sheep or a flock of chickens in your back garden or apartment (which ever may be the case) but I can help with the planting of Herbs.

It may not be quite warm enough yet to start planting outdoors but you can always grow a few herbs indoors until the frost begins to thaw.

Many herb plants grow easily in containers and require only minimal care.

All you need can be found in Homebase for a minimal cost. Around 10 - 15 Euro
Herb Plants
Pots or containers
Potting Mix

Time: About half an hour

Step 1: Make sure you have a sunny windowsill where your herbs will survive. A south or southeast window would be perfect if it gets at least 5 hours of sun per day and is away from drafts.

Step 2: Get a container that is at least 6-12 inches deep. You can plant multiple herbs in a wide or long container or use at least a 6" pot for individual plants.

Step 3: Use a potting mix to avoid soil born diseases.

Step 4: Put a 2-3 inch layer of potting mix into the bottom of your container and position your herb plants in the container.

Step 5: Finish filling in with the potting mix, firming gently around the plants. Leave about an inch at the top of the container for watering.

Some Handy Tips:
1. Water sparingly. Herbs don't like to sit in wet soil.
2. Feed once a month with a fertilizer labeled for use on edibles.
3. Allow the plants some time to acclimate. Once you see new growth, you can start using your herbs.
4. Choose herbs that don't grow too wide or tall. Chives, basil, lavender, parsley, mint and thyme are good choices.
5. Snip and use your plants often to encourage them to grow full and bushy.
6. Never trim more than 1/3 of the plants foliage.


  1. Roast Garlic and Mint Crusted Lamb is much healthier than fish and chips. I know homebase is a great place to buy products, they sell quality summer houses on their website.

  2. It is healthier but you know, sometimes you can't beat fish and chips. As for the summer house, it's funny you mention it, I just bought one this weekend.


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