A spiral of herbs


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Our original herb garden that we planted four years ago is quite far from the cottage, tucked away in a corner of the garden. Although it is a lovely place to visit and enjoy, it is not always very practical when you need some rosemary for the roasted vegetables or some sage for a sore throat.

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So when it was time to do something with the patch of land that has up until now stored a lot of old cow manure, a small herb garden was high on the list. We also wanted a wildlife friendly habitat close by, so included a stumpery as a bug-hotel for any small creepy crawlies and flying insects next to the herbs.

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 We wanted an easy to harvest herb garden where you can reach up towards the top from all sides and the herbs that like a well drained soil or more sun can be positioned accordingly. Since our whole garden is designed with circles and spirals we decided to create a raised spiral design with stepping stones around the bottom and make it quite small for easy access.

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After setting up the stumpery and planting ferns around it, we raked the remaining manure into a mound and two of the teenagers built a small stone wall spiralling down from the top.

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 Then the fun task of adding herbs could begin. For the very top we choose special lavender with long flowers and very silvery foliage.

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We continued to add mostly cooking herbs along the planting pockets, paying attention to which herbs would eventually grow very big and thus needing more space. We added some annuals and biennials in spaces that will later be filled by the more slow growing perennials. We added the stepping stones as well for easy harvesting.

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We are happy with the results and are so pleased to have all these lovely herbs right outside the front door where we can harvest them in an instant.

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The whole stumpery and spiral took less than two days to create and we can highly recommend this design to anyone wishing to add some herbs to their garden.  If your space is smaller you can still make it and just be a bit more selective with your choice of plants. Only put in herbs that you love to use in cooking. Pinch out the tops of new growth for adding to your meal and keep your herbs health and compact at the same time. Be assured that you are also helping wildlife in the process as most herbs have flowers that bees and butterflies love.

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