Typical herb gardens contain a variety of perennial herbs, with a few annuals tucked between larger specimens. Most thrive in full sun and require relatively little care, other than clipping to keep them in shape and occasional watering. Preparing the soil for the garden includes routine tilling and amending the soil to create the conditions the herb prefers. Once established, care consists of watering once a week, light fertilization and keeping weeds in control.
Select a site that receives full sun for the majority of the day. Although many herbs will grow in partially shaded areas, oils responsible for the flavor and fragrance of herbs develop best in direct sun.
Till to a depth of 8 to 10 inches. Remove stones, roots and other debris. Break up clods of soil with a garden hoe or rake.
Perform a soil test on the soil to determine its pH. Adjust pH to 6.0 to 7.5, following the instructions in your soil test kit.
Spread a 2- to 3-inch layer of bulky humus, such as straw-based manure. Work the humus into the soil with a garden tiller or hand tools. Herbs require sandy or average soil that drains easily and provides aeration for roots. Bulky humus encourages drainage and provides aeration.