Our Growing List Of Herbs
For Your Minnesota Garden
With its blue, star-shaped flowers, borage makes a lovely ornamental. Its young leaves have a refreshing, mild cucumber-like fragrance and traditionally been used in salads and lemonade. The flowers can be candied.
Sage has been one of the most popular culinary herbs since ancient times. It adds great flavor to many different dishes, but this herb also holds a great deal of healing properties and, when planted in the garden, it attracts beneficial pollinators and prevents harmful pests.
Fresh Parsley can be used in any savory dish. Try adding it to marinades for meat, fish, and poultry, as a garnish for soups, vegetables, and pastas, or even add whole leaves to your favorite salad recipe for an interesting new flavor.
Lemongrass is commonly taken orally, applied directly to the skin, or inhaled as aromatherapy for many different conditions. But there is limited scientific research to support any of its common uses.
In food and beverages, lemongrass is used as a flavoring. For example, lemongrass leaves are commonly used as "lemon" flavoring in herbal teas.
In manufacturing, lemongrass is used as a fragrance in deodorants, soaps, and cosmetics. Lemongrass is also used in making vitamin A and natural citronella.
Dried or fresh, rosemary contains the antioxidant vitamins A, C, B6, and folate, along with essential minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and manganese. But what makes rosemary a nutritional powerhouse is its high levels of polyphenols, flavonoids, and terpenes—plant compounds that play a major role in supporting health and balance in the body.
This classic basil flavor comes in a small package—a pretty Boxwood basil plant with tiny leaves and a tight form (that looks like a little boxwood shrub). Boxwood basil is perfect for containers, alone or mixed, and as an edging in the garden. Cooks prize the tiny leaves for salads and for adding whole to dishes with no need to chop. It grows lots of little stems that are thinner than other basils and loaded with leaves.
Arugula leaves are tender and bite-sized with a tangy flavor. Along with other leafy greens, arugula contains more than 250 milligrams (mg) per 100 grams (g) of nitrate. High intakes of dietary nitrate have been shown to lower blood pressure, reduce the amount of oxygen needed during exercise, and enhance athletic performance.
Lavender herb’s delightful scent and beautiful bloom spikes have made it a favorite herb for centuries. Wild lavender grows throughout the Mediterranean and northeast Africa, while garden varieties are found all over the world. Lavender is cherished for its scent, being widely used in perfumes, beauty products, disinfectants, and household cleaners. Herbalists and aromatherapists rely on it for everything from relieving stress and promoting sleep to healing wounds and encouraging healthy digestion.
Add to dishes at the very end of the cooking process, because their mild flavor is destroyed by heat. The purple flowers of onion chives, which are also edible, float beautifully in soup. In late summer, dig up a couple of plants, pot them, and move them to your windowsill for a nice winter source of fresh snips.
Most parts of this culinary herb can be used. The leaves have an excellent, warm flavor like a cross between celery and anise, and are delicious with most savory dishes (soups and stews) as well as poultry. The stems are harvested while still young to be used for flavoring primarily in confections. The Lovage stems can be cut in the spring - blanch and eat as a vegetable. Even the seeds can be harvested and used when ground, as a substitute for salt.
Once in bloom, Lovage also attracts many beneficial pollinators to your garden with its fragrant blooms!
Mint Apple Tea
The delicate flavor of Apple mint works best in fresh, uncooked preparations. Muddle leaves and add to cocktails, mocktails and tea. Add whole or chopped leaves to popsicles, sorbets and ice cubes. Use to make sauces or herb rubs for poultry, lamb and seafood. Roughly chop Apple mint and add to chutney, dressings, jelly or brine when pickling.
One of the many fresh herbs used in many Italian kitchens. The aromatic flavor of thyme complements Southern Italian sauces of hot peppers and eggplants, as well as being a primary herb in soups and stews.
Greek oregano uses, it is savored for its strong aroma and spicy intense flavor and is prominently used in Greek, Italian or Spanish cuisine in homemade pizzas, tomato sauces, soups and more.
Modern dehydration practices ensure that the dill weed stays extremely green and flavorful, making this herb a colorful and tasty addition to many dishes. It has a light, sweet flavor that is best added to a dish right before serving. Dill weed is popular in Greek, Slavic and Turkish cooking for chicken casserole as well as recipes containing spinach, mushrooms and lamb. German cooking often uses dill herb in dishes showcasing fish, poultry, eggs and cheese.
French Tarragon is the aristocrat of fresh herbs, a chef's best friend, and a must for any " Culinary Herb Garden"! It has a spicy anise flavor that will transform an ordinary dish into a work of art. A little tarragon in chicken salad makes a profound difference! It is wonderful in sauces, soups and meat dishes. Try it with vegetables. It is the choice for any hearty dish
Bright orange, edible flowers and cream and green variegated leaves. The leaves and flowers have a peppery taste. Add to salads and vegetable dishes. The flowers make a wonderful garnish.
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Lemon thyme is one of the many varieties of thyme. It's a low shrub native to the Mediterranean and a member of the mint family. It looks just like regular thyme, with long, thin sprigs with tiny spear-shaped green leaves. You'll notice a difference immediately when you crush a few of its leaves and breath in its sweet, lemony aroma.
Purple Ruffle Basil
This is a great plant to spice up your life, kitchen, and landscape! Purple Ruffles grows best in full sun and moist soil. Purple Ruffles is a beautiful form of basil that grows about 18" high and has ruffled jagged leaves. The scent and flavor are slightly different from sweet basil with more licorice and cinnamon flavor.
Lemon verbena is said to be the most “lemony” of all the citrus-scented herbs. With its delightful scent and taste, lemon verbena is a bright, sweet herb that can make recipes so much more interesting. It also has a wide range of medicinal properties.
Perpetuo Pesto Basil
The shape, color, and scent of this herb will make it a favorite in your garden. The columnar shape and light green foliage edged in creamy white add variety to the herb garden. Since this variety doesn't flower it is a great culinary basil, it keeps its flavor all season. I like to use this variegated basil in sauces; I add the basil at the end of the cooking process
The ornamental leaves of Golden Sage have the same great flavor of regular Sage! This highly useful herb makes a lovely aromatic accent plant in borders or mixed container plantings. Plant in pots on patios or bring indoors and place on a sunny windowsill. Fresh or dried leaves can be used to flavor pork dishes, stuffing and cheeses
Pineapple mint is edible, so can be used to flavor tea, jelly or fruit salads, or as a colorful garnish. The leaves are also added to light, fruity potpourri and is has been used for medicinal purposes.
This basil has a spicy cinnamon flavor that puts a delicious new twist on any recipe calling for basil as an ingredient. Cinnamon Basil’s aromatic foliage adds an enticing fragrance to the garden, or enjoy it indoors potted and placed in a sunny window sill. Super easy to grow and so delicious! Culinary herb for gardens and containers. Excellent for adding flavor to soups, sauces, fish and meat dishes.
Lemon basil has narrow, elongated oval leaves that measure an average of 5 centimeters long. The square-shaped leaf stalks can grow anywhere from 20 to 40 centimeters tall with leaves growing opposite each other in pairs. The light green leaves are delicate with smooth edges and offer a light citrus aroma. During the late summer months, the plant will produce lemon-scented, white flowers on long light green bracts. Lemon basil has a very mild anise flavor with strong notes of lemon.
Cilantro is a common ingredient in Latin and Indian cuisines. The fresh leaves can be rinsed, patted dry, and chopped before adding them to a variety of dishes. Cook them in or use them as a spicy, fresh garnish for complex flavor like tacos.
Cilantro can also be dried or frozen for long-term use. Freezing does retain more of the flavor, though dried cilantro is a bit more convenient to cook with.
Chervil comes from the carrot family along with dill, parsley, and fennel. It does look incredibly similar to parsley, except the leaves are smaller, lacier, and paler in color. Chervil also shares one of the same aromatic compounds as tarragon, which gives it a very delicate anise aroma and flavor. Any amount of cooking will destroy chervil's already mild flavor. Luckily, it's so tender to begin with it can be tossed into dishes at the very last second or even eaten raw.
Stevia Sugar Plant
The use of Stevia as culinary herb was known to the native Guarani tribes of Paraguay since centuries. Recent scientific trials firmly establish that this sweet leaf herb has, indeed, much health benefiting plant-derived phytochemical compounds that help control blood sugar, cholesterol, blood pressure in addition to its worth as a natural sweetener. Together with the rise in demand for low-calorie food alternatives, stevia has drawn the attention of health-conscious fitness lovers all over the planet.
The tart and bright flavor of sorrel makes it particularly good at adding some life to potatoes, eggs, and whole grains. It is also delicious with smoked or oily fish like salmon or mackerel.
Peppermint thrives alongside water gardens or in damp spots in the yard, but will also survive in drier soil. Lushest growth occurs in moist soil in partial shade. Crush fresh leaves into water for a refreshing beverage, or add to iced tea. You can also dry leaves for flavoring dishes or beverages and making desserts like meringues, cookies, or cakes. Pick leaves frequently. Plants open lavender blooms in late summer. Tolerates light frost.
Chamomile tea has been used over the years for its medicinal and health benefits. Chamomile tea has a sedating effect, as a result of which it has been used over thousands of years as a natural sleep remedy.
A mainstay in Mediterranean and Italian cuisine, fennel is slowly making a name for itself in a meat-and-potatoes world. A simple recipe to try might involve slicing or chopping the white fennel bulb into "matchsticks" or cubes as an addition to savory vegetable salads; steam, roast, or sauté the bulb and add to soup or casseroles or combine the leaves with rice or pasta along with olive oil, over baked fish. Like most plant-based foods, you'll find fennel to be widely beneficial not only in the kitchen, but nutritionally as well.
Bay Leaves Laurel
Bay leaf is typically used to season long-cooking dishes like soups, stews, and braises, but it can also enhance the flavor of quicker-cooking dishes like risotto, pasta sauce, or even a simple pot of rice. The key is to have at least a little liquid for the bay to infuse and heat to get the process going.here.
When consumed as a food, Curry Plant is most often considered a seasoning which the English use to flavor cream cheese sandwich spreads. Due to the strong aroma of this herb which does have a distinctive sage-like fragrance or that of a mixture of curry spices, Curry Plant is added to foods sparingly, providing a distinctive flavor for salads or meats.
Munstead is one of the most fragrant lavender varieties, with a very rounded, bushy habit and lots of flowers. It is prized for edible flowers and its high oil content that is good for essential oils. Munstead is smaller than most lavender varieties, and blooms earlier than many.
This stately plant is not a mint and is not a licorice. But, it is a tasty culinary herb that combines licorice flavor with mint. With a sweet rather than spicy flavor, it can be used for desserts or drinks.
In addition to slow cooked meats and vegetables, savory leaves are used to flavor stuffing, bean dishes, soups, stews and pizzas and pairs particularly well with beans, beetroot, game meat, cabbage, cheese, mackerel, eel, eggs, potatoes and tomatoes. The herb is an important part of Bulgarian, Italian, German and Romanian cuisine.
Sorrel is delicious used as an herb or as a salad green — its tartness is really refreshing. A traditional way to enjoy sorrel is cooked into a sauce and served with fish, lending a lemony flavor without the use of lemon. It's also great cooked into soups or stews. Baby sorrel greens can be tossed into mixed salads.
The beauty of marjoram is that it can be added to various dishes that use different cooking methods, such as, soups, It gives vegetable soups more flavor, roasted meats, marjoram can add an herbal aroma to roasted meats, such as chicken, sautéed vegetables, side dishes such as sautéed vegetables become more flavorful with a dash of marjoram, marinades: Upgrade the taste of your marinated meat and fish dishes by adding marjoram to the marinade.
Garlic chives can be chopped and used as a garnish just like regular chives are; try using them in compound butter or sprinkling on soup. They can also be treated more like a vegetable -- try stir-frying garlic chives or stuffing them into dumplings
The most common use of basil is for cooking, such as in tomato sauce, pesto, or vinegars. But it also can be sprinkled over salads and sliced tomatoes, either whole or chopped. Actually, don't chop the leaves, but tear them instead for the most flavor.
This mint, rather than spearmint, gives the authentic mojito taste. Mojito Mint has a much milder flavor with hints of citrus whereas spearmint is much stronger (think breath mints or chewing gum). Mojito Mint has large leaves which make it great for muddling.
Hardy plant with sweetly scented leaves and a striking fresh flavor that make it ideal for use in beverages. Used medicinally. A natural insect repellant.
Silver Posey Thyme
'Silver Posie' is an upright variegated Thyme that looks spectacular anywhere in the landscape! This ornamental variety is nice for planting in combination planters. Try placing a container of 'Silver Posie' on a outdoor tabletop as a fragrant centerpiece or indoors on a sunny windowsill. The leaves can be used to add flavor to meat dishes, stuffing, stews and marinades.
As well as kitchen companions, mints are used as garden accents, ground covers, air fresheners, and herbal medicines. They’re as beautiful as they are functional, and they’re foolproof to grow, thriving in sun and shade all over North America. In fact, mint can be vigorous spreaders, so be careful where you plant it.
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