Herbs are a pleasure to grow in the home landscape, adding variety and interest. Herbs are valued not only for their appearance, but for the varied uses of the plants. Some herbs are best suited for culinary use while others work well for medicinal uses or in aromatherapy. Often, herbs are used to create flower arrangements or sachets. Many herbs grow beautifully in containers and some can be successfully grown indoors year round. The popularity of herbs is subjective and depends on personal preference and the plant's intended use.
Mint is among the most popular perennial herbs, popular for its refreshing scent and its many and varied uses. In the kitchen, mint is used to add zing to a number of dishes, including sauces, vegetables and roast lamb, and is commonly used to make mint jam or jelly. Fresh or dried mint leaves can be used to brew a revitalizing tea that is not only delicious, but is believed to sooth an upset stomach. Mint is so easy to grow that if not controlled, it can become aggressive. Planting mint in containers will help to curb the plant's unbridled growth.
Basil is commonly found in home herb gardens, valued for its attractive appearance and its its pungent flavor that adds interest to a number of delicious salads, pasta dishes and sauces. Brewed in tea, basil is often used to relieve nausea. Basil can be fussy but does well in containers, either indoors or outdoors. A tender, annual herb, basil won't tolerate frosty weather.
Lavender is a must-have for every herb garden, popular for its lovely, delicate blooms, interesting shape and its long list of uses. In the kitchen, lavender is often used to season oils and vinegars. Lavender's relaxing scent makes lavender a valuable herb for aromatherapy and the blooms are often tucked under a pillow or added to a warm bath. Lavender is a hardy evergreen shrub that thrives in hot, dry weather with plenty of air circulation.