Bountiful Basil

Colorado State Univ. Field DayThe overpowering aroma of basil fills my kitchen. A huge pile of green leaves and stems occupies the counter, next to a bottle of olive oil, several heads of garlic, and a mound of grated Parmesan cheese. It’s pesto time.

I enjoy using basil all year long, but I’ve had bad luck growing plants indoors during the winter. White flies, mealy bugs, and other pests agree that this mint family member is delicious. I’ve finally come to realize I have to do my growing during the summer, but I can still enjoy basil’s fresh flavor in the middle of February.

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My Favorite Herbs

thyme_blkforest-co_lah_7184While most of my garden lies dormant for the winter, I’m still picking fresh herbs to use in my cooking. Last year I planted thyme, oregano, rosemary, basil, and sage in large pots, and this fall I hauled them into a sunny spot indoors. The plants are thriving.

As I snipped some rosemary for last night’s dinner, I started thinking—while my in-ground herb garden is spacious, I only have room for a limited number of pots. So, which herbs do I consider essential? And which cultivars do I like the best?

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