This year many of my herbs (cilantro, basil, shiso, oregano) are appearing healthy but tasting very very "flat". The shiso is especially disappointing. It tasted great as tiny seedlings but now are lacking and almost inedible. Very little of the citrus/spicy flavors and more of the bitter or green. I have heard that in general herbs will grow better in "poor" soil. Does this sound like my soil is too rich for them? The very strange thing is that these are in 2 different locations in different soils. The seeds are from reputable organic vendors. Anyone heard of this?
Another possibility...I've heard that "too much" moisture could have that effect on herbs.
posted 9 years ago
interesting! I hadnt' heard that before about the water! my experience in my climate with any leafy edibles is that they are very persnickety about things as far as getting a good taste out of them. but weather tends towards extremes here. very wet or very dry. very hot or too cold for growth. I had good luck with cabbage. lettuce was almost always a dissapointment. new place might reveal new luck though!
"One cannot help an involuntary process. The point is not to disturb it. - Dr. Michel Odent
Location: coastal oregon
posted 9 years ago
It has been hot... gets near 100 in the greenhouse some afternoons despite a fan. I guess I need shadecloth. I've sucessfully grown herbs before, so this was a surprise. I suppose I will just have to find the right microclimates for them to thrive.
When I first started growing herbs, something I read said the essential oils that make the flavor and any medicinal value dissipate each day with sun and heat, but re-accumulate each night. This means it's best to harvest in the morning. It also said that generally, harvesting just before the plant blooms is when the plant is most potent. I've definitely noticed herb flavor going flat after blooming.