• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
stewards:
  • paul wheaton
  • Burra Maluca
  • Mike Haasl
master gardeners:
  • John F Dean
  • jordan barton
  • Greg Martin
  • Carla Burke
gardeners:
  • Jay Angler
  • Leigh Tate
  • Steve Thorn

The best herbs

 
Posts: 15
1
4
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If I was able to grow just 1 medicinal herb, which one should I grow in priority and why?
 
pollinator
Posts: 1981
Location: La Palma (Canary island) Zone 11
purity forest garden tiny house wofati bike solar
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Melanie, impossible to answer if you dont give your climate and soil and where you would plant just one!  In pot on balcony?

Then it depends what you need... I would say mint... Melissa... Camomilla...
 
pollinator
Posts: 251
Location: Hamburg, Germany
63
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Right, what do you want it to do?

--Helping with sleep:  Chamomile (verify you like it first, I personally haaaate the taste), lavender, valerian (though this has more dangerous potential AND smells like cat urine)
--General relaxing:  Mint or lemon balm (both will take over a garden)
.
.
.
--Killing your enemies:  Foxglove

Assuming you're looking for something in that undefined middle, what are you trying to treat?
 
Melanie Camirand
Posts: 15
1
4
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It's not necessairly that I need something specific.  It was more like a fun light question to see what kind of herbs people value and why?
 
gardener
Posts: 2166
Location: South of Capricorn
883
dog rabbit urban cooking writing homestead ungarbage
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
i think my hands down favorite is peppermint, in terms of usability. Everything from ulcers to mojitos.

But the one I have spent the most effort on is probably red shiso (perilla), with basil and cilantro coming close behind. I make sure I always have these herbs in my garden, and when they come back in spring there is great rejoicing.
 
pollinator
Posts: 111
Location: Kitsap Penninsula, WA
64
duck books chicken food preservation cooking wood heat
  • Likes 6
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Mine would be cilantro/coriander.

It grows fast, gives me lot's of leaves to cook with, and puts out flowers that are attractive to beneficial and natural predator insects right before it gifts you with another herb - coriander. We eat A LOT of korean/south east asian and mexican food and cilantro is good in both (from stir fry, beef bowl, rice dishes, pho, etc) to salsas, tacos, etc... Also, sourdough toast with avocado, tomato and cilantro with a dusting of salt and a bit of pepper is my all time favorite thing in the whole world to eat. That would be my last meal. I'm literally drooling right now just thinking about it...

The seeds are super easy to collect so I haven't bought cilantro seeds for years and I have jars and jars of seed every year that we replant with. I have a wild patch going on one end of our staple garden along with parsley, dill, chervil and different thymes that bring lot's of beneficial big eyed bugs, parasitic wasps, lady beetles and flies to our garden. I don't do anything to that patch except clip back the dead stalks and mulch it heavy in the spring - it just keeps coming back!

And it's so, so pretty when it goes to flower - dainty and white and hovering over low growing thymes and parsleys like a little bit of cloud.

The only thing it doesn't do is dry well. That's the only draw back I have found. It's a definite fresh herb buddy.

We grow this almost 9 months out of the year here in our area. I put cilantro in different areas that range from hotter to colder and just space the plantings out that way. It is such a cheerful herb. I love it.

 
Posts: 664
Location: Australia, New South Wales. Köppen: Cfa (Humid Subtropical), USDA: 10/11
2
transportation hugelkultur cat forest garden fish trees urban chicken cooking woodworking homestead
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Although my favourite herb is coriander, in our warm/hot climate it tends to bold to seed REALLY quickly. Even in winter the window of opportunity is small, but that isn't a major issue as the seed then becomes a spice and the root is ALWAYS used anyway.

So, my 'perennial' favourite is mint - can be used in so many instances: food, drinks, medicinal, etc.

(Parsley is equal in those qualities, but mints refreshing flavour and aroma just wins over.)

 
Morfydd St. Clair
pollinator
Posts: 251
Location: Hamburg, Germany
63
  • Likes 4
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Oh, cool - I didn't know you can cook with cilantro/coriander root!  Thank you!

Ok, to answer the question then, I don't use many herbs medicinally, but I occasionally heat comfrey leaves in oil and use the oil for bruises, etc.  Since comfrey is otherwise useful in the garden and unkillable, I guess I'd start with that.  Be super careful where you plant it, and use the sterile version, as unkillable can be annoying at times.

Unkillable also goes for lemon balm, which I make relaxing tea from.  It spreads madly but at least it smells nice as I pull it.

(Does anyone else rate their weeds?  Buttercups are thugs that are a pain to get out, and bindweed the same plus stinking.  Meanwhile, henbit/dead nettle (whichever or both I have) is simple to pull and actually is gone by summer anyway, and it smells lovely!)
 
Xisca Nicolas
pollinator
Posts: 1981
Location: La Palma (Canary island) Zone 11
purity forest garden tiny house wofati bike solar
  • Likes 3
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

F Agricola wrote:
Although my favourite herb is coriander, in our warm/hot climate it tends to bold to seed REALLY quickly. Even in winter the window of opportunity is small, but that isn't a major issue as the seed then becomes a spice and the root is ALWAYS used anyway.

So, my 'perennial' favourite is mint - can be used in so many instances: food, drinks, medicinal, etc.

(Parsley is equal in those qualities, but mints refreshing flavour and aroma just wins over.)



Try pápalo or Mexican coriander! It needs more heat than regular coriander. It is not at all the same plant actually.

Here we grow coriander only in winter!
 
pollinator
Posts: 207
Location: WNC 6b
49
kids goat hugelkultur personal care foraging trees books chicken food preservation medical herbs wood heat
  • Likes 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Dandelion, cuz it's going to grow anyways in abundance. =)
Liver, kidneys, blood tonic, purifyer, fry those flowers or make them into wine. Dandie is a might fine
 
F Agricola
Posts: 664
Location: Australia, New South Wales. Köppen: Cfa (Humid Subtropical), USDA: 10/11
2
transportation hugelkultur cat forest garden fish trees urban chicken cooking woodworking homestead
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator

Morfydd St. Clair wrote:Oh, cool - I didn't know you can cook with cilantro/coriander root!  Thank you!

(Does anyone else rate their weeds?  Buttercups are thugs that are a pain to get out, and bindweed the same plus stinking.  Meanwhile, henbit/dead nettle (whichever or both I have) is simple to pull and actually is gone by summer anyway, and it smells lovely!)



Yes, Coriander root is just as important as the leaves in cooking - slightly different flavour palette particularly when crushed, and obviously a different texture - very important aspects in Asian cooking.

The common 'weed' I use is dandelion - not for me but fed to the chooks and our cat as a tonic. Both of them love it.

Xisca Nicolas wrote:Try pápalo or Mexican coriander! It needs more heat than regular coriander. It is not at all the same plant actually. Here we grow coriander only in winter!



Thanks Xisca, never hear of that one, though, there are perhaps thousands of regionally available herbs that aren't widely known - which is good because I would want to grow them all and simply don't have the space!

The coriander substitute that's getting more coverage these days is  Eryngium foetidum - known here and in Asia as 'Sawtooth Coriander', 'Culantro' in the US and originates in the broader Americas. It apparently has a stronger flavour than 'normal' coriander, though not as susceptible to bolting to seed - never knowingly ate it, no doubt it's been in Vietnamese, Thai, Lao, and Cambodian food I've eaten. Another one to add to the garden!

 
expectation is the root of all heartache - shakespeare. tiny ad:
paul's patreon stuff got his videos and podcasts running again!
https://permies.com/t/patreon
reply
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic