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Would you like to know how to....?

Written by Sue, Wednesday, May 14, 2014       Sunny, very hot and humid, 90's, 

Though I have been sweating up a storm,(old southern saying) I won't complain about the heat and humidity, because I promised Mr P. last winter I wouldn't, no matter how hot and humid it got. ~smile~ I sure hope I will be able to keep this promise, cause a promise is a promise, I forgot to tell him my fingers were crossed. ~smile~

      ~Herb gathering, and preserving~
Has anyone bought herbs at the grocery store lately, such high prices they are charging. Do you use herbs, if so, I am here to tell you that you can grow, harvest, dry and make your own herb blends for minimum money..
You don't have to have a large space, herbs do well in containers, and in raised beds, they even like living among your flower beds.
 For some reason my herbs are producing early this year, last week, I gathered, different thyme's, oregano's, parsley, and marjoram. This week sage, and more of the same, herbs should be gathered about mid morning not early, as mid morning is when their flavors are at their peek for the day.

 Wash in cold water,handle with care and  try not to bruise the leaves as that releases some of the oils,
 Place in salad spinner, my salad spinner has become one of my best go to for veggies and herbs, makes work a lot easier and quicker, and quicker works for me, see that brown speck on the leaf it went the way of the trash can, always inspect leaves and stems.
I then place them on the counter with paper toweling underneath, feed sack towels work well too! I also picked strawberries and made more jam.
 There are several methods for drying herbs, a dehydrator is quicker, but I am told, vie the internet, this method might dry the oils to much, I used this method last summer and didn't find that to be true, however.. I have decided to try both ways this year. And then there is
 the old fashion way.  When you air dry, you don't have to keep rotating trays,  I bunched the herbs and placed a small rubber band around them, hung them on  a wooden clothes dryer in a bedroom that is dark, this bedroom has a ceiling fan which I ran on low just to keep the air circulating. 
This is what the herbs look like today, coming along so nicely, I have added a bunch of Mother's Day roses and lavender to dry. Once they are dried I will show how I store them, so stay tuned.
Not hard at all, was it.  
While out dead heading roses today I decided to bring a few inside along with more lavender to dry.I have some great ideas for using lavender, absolutely one of my favorite herbs.

Enjoy your day,


Doniene May 14, 2014 at 2:44 PM  

Oh Sue, thanks for the tips on drying herbs! I've done a few over the years, but am expanding my selections, so always nice to learn something more!


ellen b. May 14, 2014 at 4:33 PM  

Your herb project is like art work. So pretty to see all the stages!
Well my dear I'm in the South right now and I didn't promise anyone I wouldn't complain about the heat and humidity. Oh my goodness...my hair does not know what to do. Mostly I'm staying in my daughter's apartment in the coolness...

Vee May 14, 2014 at 4:38 PM  

Another method or two to add to my list. I like the MGCC method for freezing herbs...so easy and hardly a thing to it.

NanaNor's May 14, 2014 at 5:54 PM  

Sue, You are always so thoughtful to share tips like this with us. Usually, I just make large batches of Pesto from my basil and freeze it. Now with a smaller yard, don't know what I'll do this year.
Thanks for always teaching us new things.

Cranberry Morning May 14, 2014 at 6:06 PM  

I like to dry my herbs too, although I've only put them in the dehydrator. Works slick, but I'd like to try the hanging method. I know it works perfectly for cayenne peppers, but that's because it's fall when I harvest them and the air is drier. It's pretty humid here in the summer. But I bet that fan might make up the difference. Great ideas!

Thanks for stopping in today at Cranberry Morning. Yep, I think that kitty is keeping her baby buggy. :-)

Mrs.Rabe May 14, 2014 at 6:08 PM  

I'm going to buy some herbs, mine are just not cooperating! I think I am going to put them in the front garden amongst the flowers and then, be able to keep an eye on them and pick them (mid morning) and dry them!


Kris Anderson May 14, 2014 at 8:39 PM  

this is just great to see all the work that goes into replacing and storing your goods from the garden. It's great fun to learn from you. I look forward to seeing how you store your herbs..

great photos..

podso May 14, 2014 at 10:22 PM  

You are inspiring with your herb garden!

Happyone May 14, 2014 at 10:51 PM  

I'll be planting mine outside any day now. I grew them from seeds and they are outside.

Debbie May 14, 2014 at 11:34 PM  

I will be honest and tell you I have never grown herbs, nor will I probably do so in the future. But I do love reading about how it is done. Soo interesting. I have a feeling ALL of your food is soo good Sue. In fact, it is not a feeling I am sure it is a fact. So much love you put into everything you do. Thanks for sharing it with us!

Cheryl May 15, 2014 at 12:28 AM  

I use my herbs fresh all the time, but it's been many years since I've tried to dry any. I look forward to seeing the next step in your process. Do you also dry rosemary?

Thanks for your class today, Sue! It's not too late to teach an old dog new tricks! :)

SarahGeorge May 15, 2014 at 3:10 AM  

wow!! this looks great! I'm already curious to know the storage method! :)
Your mom's day post was super awesome! It was good to see the photos of your lovely mother and your writing was so touching!

Carol May 15, 2014 at 9:48 AM  

Thank you for the tutorial. I wish I hadn't sold my dehydrator in a garage sale. Bad move on my part. I had a pot of rosemary on the deck last summer & enjoyed using it in recipes. I long to have an herb garden, but for now I'll settle for having a few pots growing on our deck.
You are an inspiration,Sue!


Barb May 15, 2014 at 3:06 PM  

Hi Sue!

Great information! I an so envious that you are already picking and drying your herbs - our garden isn't even planted yet! It seems like the price of everything is so high these days, my garden will be very appreciated this summer!

Your strawberries looked so delicious! Can't wait to make my first batch of jam!


Carol OurSearsKitHome May 15, 2014 at 6:55 PM  

You've been busy! I do love making jams and jellies and have made all of ours for many years, but not without SureJell.
How long does it take to cook without the SureJell?
Your tribute to your mom is one of the most beautiful I have ever read.
Herbs are so rewarding to grow....most don't need good soil or much care. I so enjoy going out in the morning and picking them.
Oh, and I am starting a strawberry patch this year. Haven't had one since we moved to this house. How exciting is that??!

Cheryl @ TFD May 15, 2014 at 7:12 PM  

Thanks for the information, Sue! The only herb I've planted so far is basil. I'll watch for your tips on storing herbs.
Your tribute to your mother was so beautiful! It made me tear up, as my own mother has been gone nearly 37 years. I remember her hands, always busy with cooking and sewing. I know I don't have to tell you how blessed you are that you still have your mother. :) I hope Mother's Day was a special day for her and for you, too!

Angela May 15, 2014 at 9:49 PM  

You are always up to something interesting! I haven't grown any herbs in the last few years but need to get back to it. I'm still using basil I dried three years ago:)

Nellie's Cozy place May 16, 2014 at 9:05 PM  

Hi Sue,
All those herbs are amazing,love watching what you are doing with them, and how you are preserving
them. I have grown some herbs several times but have never really dried them. Maybe next time I will try it.......

Thanks for coming by and commenting
on my china, always appreciate your comments.

That was such a lovely tribute to
your sweet Mom......she is beautiful on the inside and outside. What a blessing to have a Mom like that and so glad you are still sharing life with her.
That is wonderful..........

Have a wonderful weekend hon,
Blessings, Nellie

Janette's Sage/Simply Your Decor May 18, 2014 at 8:03 AM  

Thank you. I so want to do this with my herbs, which are totally out of hand. This is great..thanks!
Benjamin had to release his ducks yesterday to a pond near the house. He did so well..tears, but it was done. He still wants a farm so that he can keep his ducks. He always smiles when I tell him you sent him a message...he remembers. Thanks!!

Tania May 18, 2014 at 8:54 AM  

Hi Sue,
I am so happy that you shared this information. I just bought cilantro at the grocery store (one of my favs) and after using only half the other half sits in my refrigerator going bad as I don't know what to do with it at this point to preserve it.
I look forward to learning more from you.
Thank you!

Maryann May 19, 2014 at 7:47 PM  

We belong to a CSA and have been getting a lot of herbs in our basket every week. We were wondering what to do with it all, so this post is very timely. Thanks so much

Lea May 19, 2014 at 9:37 PM  

Sue, you are such a "busy bee." Always up to such neat projects. I tried growing herbs a couple of summers ago and didn't have a lot of luck. You make me think I should give it a try again. Happy week!

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