herbs

All types of edible herbs are grown in the elegant walled garden. Four main beds are arranged around a small pond with a fountain, which attracts frogs to eat unwelcome slugs. A circle of variegated lemon balm, which makes calming tea, grows around the apothecary rose, which Judith uses to make rose petal jam and ice cream. Many herb flowers are also used in food. Chives, salad burnet, parsley, alpine strawberries, violets, primroses and sorrel are used to edge the beds.

A separate pudding bed contains plants like sweet cicely, angelica, borage, violet, primrose and bergamot, which are used in desserts. There is also a large bed for salad herbs, including rocket, Greek cress and Japanese salad herbs like mizuna, which grow all year. Tender herbs like lemon verbena, scented geraniums and blackcurrant, pineapple and tangerine sages are grown in pots so that they can over-winter in the greenhouse.

All these herbs can be planted in pots or window boxes, by anyone who lacks space. Judith also shows how to mix herbs successfully in herbaceous borders, with tall plants like fennel and lovage at the back, hyssops, sage and marjorams in mid-border and shorter thymes or chives at the front.

THE LATEST EXCITING NEWS ABOUT USING HERBS IN FOOD IS THAT THEY HAVE BEEN FOUND TO CONTAIN EVEN HIGHER LEVELS OF ANTI-OXIDANTS THAN RED FRUIT AND VEG. THIS RECENT RESEARCH MEANS THAT YOU SHOULD USE HERBS TO PROTECT YOURSELF FROM FREE-RADICAL DAMAGE, WHICH LEADS TO HEART DISEASE, CANCER, DIABETES AND DEMENTIA. SO HERBS CAN SLOW DOWN THE AGEING PROCESS.
© Judith Hann 2019