hidden herb garden


My husband has been tweaking the area around our pond in the backyard and as he pulls away overgrown ivy he has been discovering pots that have blended into the landscape over the last couple of years.

I keep seeing old friends turn up on the patio looking sadly neglected and in desperate need of a good trimming. 

I had completely forgotten about this little herb garden that I sat out by the pond two summers ago.  After clearing all the leaves and sticks out of the pot, I cut the plants back a good deal and slowly but surely they are all recovering nicely. 

Now I have thyme, chives, oregano, and sage close at hand to add to whatever I'm cooking.

The only herbs missing were basil (which I added to this pot) parsley, cilantro and fennel, which I planted in another empty pot from behind the potting shed.

I found a spot on the patio that gets sun earlier in the day but provides a bit of afternoon shade.   Isn't it amazing how some plants can survive with total neglect and others can be provided ideal soil and growing condition and still struggle. 

Such is the mystery of gardening...

Now I am in need of some new recipes using fresh herbs.  Any suggestions?

xo, Patty


  1. Chives are a favorite of mine! Chop and add to mashed potatoes for a different twist. The Barefoot Contessa has a recipe for Roast Loin of Pork eith Fennel that uses fresh thyme and it is wonderful! The recipe is on the food network site, seems like it was the Fireside Dinner episode. I have made this a bunch of times, and it is always pleases! It was an older episode, but a super good one!
    Someitmes I make a homemade pasta sauce, just cook onion and garlic in olive oil, add large can of tomatoes that you pureed to desired amount of chunkyness in blender, salt and fresh ground pepper to taste and a sprig of basil, simmer for about 15 minutes and remove the basil. I don't always use ground beef, sometimes I chop a little bacon and use that instead, if you do that cook your onion in a little bit of bacon drippings - hey I am southern, everything is good with bacon in it! Lots of possibilities with fresh herbs! I love using them!!!
    Oh yeah, chop a tomato, cube some fresh mozzerella and chop some fresh basil leaves. sprinkle with salt and fresh ground pepper to taste and drizzle with olive oil for a yummy summer salad!

  2. What a wonderful discovery. Now you can enjoy fresh herbs with your meals or just enjoy the beauty of the blooms and smells that come with herbs.

  3. Fantastic! I love having fresh herbs growing in the gardens.

  4. I do a no cook spaghetti sauce with sweet basil chopped, cherry tomatoes quartered, then cover in olive oil for several hours on the counter. Serve over noodles. Enjoy. We had it last night. I use about one cup of basil or less.

  5. Hi Patty. What a fun find! Another good herb to grow is rosemary. It goes so well with beef dishes. And I love to do roasted potatoes with a bit of garlic and rosemary. Parsley is good too, and I use it a lot. Sage is a wonderful flavor too. You will just have to start snipping some and adding it to whatever you cook, and see what you like. A good way to experiment is with pizzas!!
    Have fun!!

  6. Nice surprise!

    Like a time capsule :)

    Smiles :)

  7. What a great find. I love my herb garden and used something from it every day. A true treasure to find")

  8. Patty,
    I love herbs!!! My favorite are chive...just snip it and put on top of bread and butter...delicious! Basil in anything with tomatoes! Parsley in salads and eggs...omletes and scrambled! Enjoy your forgotten finds!!!

  9. I love growing and using herbs.
    For a Greek inspired grilled chicken dish: I like marinating chicken thighs in a bunch of minced oregano, a clove of chopped garlic, salt, pepper and olive oil. Refrigerate in a bowl for at least 4 hours. Grill outdoors and turn frequently.

    I'm sure you use your basil for pesto right?

    Lemon Verbena makes a wonderful quick tea lemon bread. I can point you to the recipe if you would like.

    I love using basil and oregano in pasta sauce.

    Herb butters also... just chop up your herbs and mix with butter. Freeze in logs for winter use.
    It's great on french bread. Use basil, oregano, chives, parsley and thyme in your butter. Spread on a loaf of sliced puglise bread, wrap in foil and heat on grill or in oven. Delicious. Take care.

  10. P.S. The herb butter is wonderful on pasta with some fresh parmesan/romano cheese. Not the stuff from the can please.

  11. What a sweet surprise! I agree, some herbs thrive on neglect! I love cooking with fresh herbs...always use double than you would the dried. And be creative!! :)


  12. I have a few perennial herbs in the garden and a few annual ones in pots. Somehow I've missed cilantro. That needs to be rectified! :)

  13. Isn't it amazing that those herbs survived? Hardy little things, aren't they? Thanks for sharing. Susan

  14. What a great discovery. I used to have a lot more herbs until MyHero WEEDED the garden. I still have chives- that is the only one he recognized~ Have fun with new recipes.

  15. Herbs seem to grow wherever...they aren't too picky...I have had chives in the same pot for about 6 years and they just keep re-seeding themselves...gardening is such a joy that way sometimes!!

  16. There are so many herb recipes out there. Try searching them out at your local library. We sprinkle chopped dried rosemary on roasted asparagus, and some other herbs will be added to our goat's milk soap. I have dill - used for pickles so many more to list.

  17. Patty,
    That was a nice find! Maybe I better go look in my back yard.
    Nancy Jo

  18. Glad your husband is out retrieving old pots for you to revive...Herbs are like weeds..They seem to grow everywhere..

  19. That means that you are green thumb.Shed been a passionate gardener and loves to decorate her garden shed and spends most of her time there. The food she cooks are always laden with fresh organic herbs straight from here garden.


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