My husband is an amazing cook and he loves to have fresh herbs when possible. I thought to myself, "How hard could it be to make some room for an herb garden?"
Fresh herbs for cooking are so nice, aren't they? A few years ago we had a rosemary plant that got quite large, but unfortunately it died from neglect one hot summer. Last year we bought a Basil plant and kept it out with our tomatoes all summer. It was really nice having the fresh leaves available, and we used this plant all the way until autumn.
The other day Steve mentioned that it would be nice to have some a small herb garden, and that's all I needed to hear. I had been reading a gardening book full of ideas, tips and tricks, and saw something that I just loved! You take an old ladder, lay it on the ground, fill the area between the rungs with dirt and turn the whole thing into an herb garden! I instantly remembered the dead ladder we have by our well house.
We have a storage tank for water pumped from our well, and there's a ladder to climb up and check the water level in the tank. Shortly after we moved here about 8 years ago, Steve discovered that the old ladder was rotten and needed to be replaced. It was left on the ground nearby and was slowly covered with weeds and grass over the years. However, the second I read about using a ladder as a planter, I could hardly wait to use the ancient relic in my front garden!
The dogs and I went hunting for the ladder and soon I had it under my arm and marched back to the front garden. I found the perfect spot for it at the back of the front garden, but before I lay it down, I pulled all the weeds out from where it would go. Then I got a bunch of soil to raise the level up by about 6 inches. Carefully laying the ladder on top of the soil. I could see there would be some gaps from the hillside, so I found some rocks to build up the side. Once I was satisfied, I added soil to all of the ladder sections. The next hour was spent conditioning the soil by hand. With a hose in one hand, I used the other to stir and mix every single inch of the dusty, water-repellant potting soil until it was completely wet and soaking up the water as it should. A bit of rinsing and clean up and the bed was ready!
I planted two sections of basil, two of chives, one dill, one spearmint and one of sage. It's been just a few days and the basil is already beginning to sprout, hooray! I'll keep you up to date on how this herb garden does. I know that I've got some perennials in here so we'll see about those, but we'll certainly have basil, spearmint and dill this year! :) (By the way, we have a small rosemary plant in my front garden bed which I got as a seedling last year. It's really starting to take off this year, which is exciting to see, and the flowers are so pretty!)
Next: Part 8a—Dreams of a Big Flower Garden, 1-Month Update: The Good