The Unreasonably High Cost of Herbs

I grow my own herbs. Part of this is that by doing so, I have a supply of fresh herbs whenever I want it. An even bigger reason is to save money. People don’t often realize how much money they can save by growing their own herbs. As an example, in Oregon, I grew a single sage plant. I purchased the seedling for about $3 and it was in a four-inch pot. By the end of the year, that sage plant covered over four square feet and since sage likes poor soil and bad conditions, nothing else would have grown there except weeds. I gave away roughly half of the sage when I harvested it, and still ended up with two and a half pounds of sage at the end of the year. I air-dried it. Fast forward to now. I recently priced dried sage at the store. An off-brand (cheap brand) sold rubbed sage in three-quarter ounce bottles for $2.89. The name brand was selling it for $5.63. For just the cheap brand, that comes to $61.65 per pound. (For the name brand, it would be $120.11 per pound.) As I said, I had two and a half pounds of it, so at the price of the cheap sage, that represented over $154.00. Commercial companies use heat to dry their herbs and heat destroys most of the flavor and healthy substances in the herb. I air-dried mine, so I only lost a small amount of the flavor and health Continue Reading →


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Why You Should Grow Garden Sage

Garden sage is one of the most used culinary herbs and it especially lends its flavor to sausage, turkey stuffing and to sauces. It is easily grown, tolerant of poor soil, drought and is cold resistant. It is also easy to harvest and dry. Many gardeners have discovered that in the middle of winter, it is a simple matter to dig the snow away to get fresh leaves, too. This plant is a member of the mint family and it has square stems like peppermint. It isn’t quite as prone to spread as mint, though. Still, it grows easily in pots, so there is little reason a person can’t grow it that way and simply bring it inside when the weather turns bad. Doing so will give you fresh leaves year round, without digging through snow. It is easy to propagate, too. To do this, clip off a sage branch about six inches long, pinch off the leaves from the bottom half, and put the branch in a clear glass or a glass jar. Add cold water until it is half-submerged, up to the point where the leaves were removed, then set this in a sunny location. Roots will usually appear in a week or so. Give it an extra week for the roots to get stronger, then plant the sage in regular soil. This is usually a heavily producing herb with a minimum amount of care, effort or cost. I personally love sage in spaghetti sauce as well as Continue Reading →


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