Growing plants at home is good for the planet and good for your physical and mental health! Here are some tips to care for your herbs at home:

Shallots

Grow shallots in moist but well-drained soil in full sun. Water in dry conditions and keep the area around them weed free. Harvest when the foliage starts to die down.

To help prevent fungal diseases like onion white rot, try to avoid getting the foliage wet when watering. Water plants at their base, which will also help to ensure it reaches the roots and isn’t lost to evaporation.

Mint

One thing mint needs is constantly moist soil with adequate drainage. Upon touch, if the soil feels dry, add water. It is probably best to water the plants in the morning so that they have plenty of moisture by the time the hotter afternoon sun hits. Mint, left to its own devices, will spread quickly so choose a spot where you will not mind the rampant growth or grow it in a confined space like a container or between paved areas. 

Rocket

Rocket requires plenty of moisture and occasional liquid feeding full sun or part share and well drained soil. The degree of ‘pepperiness’ of the leaves depends on their age, so start harvest early when the leaves are small, just 7-10cm. The flowering stem should be removed as soon as it appears, as the leaves will quickly become hot and strong. The leaves can bruise easily, so harvest and wash them carefully and spin or pat dry. Once picked, they will store in a covered container or plastic bag in the fridge for several days.

Coriander

Coriander likes a sunny spot, well-drained soil and a steady supply of both water and fertiliser. It grows equally well in pots or in garden beds. If using pots, use top quality potting mix and sit the pots up on pot feet, so water drains away after each watering.

Kale

Kale is a cool-weather crop that requires two months of cool weather to reach harvest. Sow seeds indoors or outdoors 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost in spring or as soon as the soil can be worked. Kale is commonly started indoors and transplanted into the garden when seedlings are 4 to 6 weeks old. Kale prefers rich, well-drained soil with a soil pH between 5.5 and 6.8. Plant kale in full sun; plant kale in partial shade in warm regions. For optimal flavor, grow kale in cool weather.

Oregano

Oregano is a popular aromatic mediterranean herb that happily grows along a path, in containers, or in the garden. This drought-tolerant herb needs well-draining soil. Wet or boggy soil leads to rot. During hot weather and dry periods, water oregano deeply and regularly and feed only occasionally with compost or organic fertilizer. Because oregano is a member of the mint family, it spreads and can become invasive. Planting oregano in pots or containers is a great option to prevent this. Harvest oregno often, to encourage growth. Begin harvesting oregano when plants are 6-8” tall. Harvest new oregano growth and oregano leaves just before flowering for the best flavor. To encourage new growth, cut back flowers as they appear.

Chives

Choose a spot in your garden that receives full sun or dappled sunlight. Sow seeds into a rich quality soil that has been fertilised. Although chives are drought tolerant, it’s important to give them consistent watering throughout the growing season for high yields. Moisten the soil thoroughly when watering. Chives’ small bulbs grow near the soil surface, so use mulch to conserve moisture and keep the weeds down. After the flowers bloom, be sure to remove them so that the seeds aren’t spread throughout your garden. Continuous harvest promotes new growth. Remember to divide the plants every 3 to 4 years in the spring. Chives are much more productive if divided regularly

 

Get involved!

Don't have much roo m to grow your bigger plants at home? Why not join a community garden! The UQ Community Garden Club (UQCGC) is located on St Lucia Campus and host regular working bees throughout the week. Get involved here!

UQ Community Garden Club
Instagram: @uqcommunitygarden
Facebook:  UQ Community Garden Club

 

About Earth Day 2021 Celebrations

What is Earth Day?

Earth Day marks the birth of the modern environmental movement. On April 22, 1970, 20 million Americans (10% of the total population of the United States) took to their streets, parks and auditoriums to call for a healthier, more sustainable treatment of the environment. Individual groups fighting against air and water pollution, fossil fuels, land clearing, soil erosion, the loss of biodiversity and the extinction of wildlife; all united on Earth Day around their shared common values. On this day in 1970, Earth Day achieved a rare political alignment with grassroots values which spear-headed policy change throughout the United States.

Learn more about the history of Earth Day here

'Restore Our Earth' 2021 Theme

Since 1990, Earth Day has since been celebrated across the globe, with 2021 marking the 51st anniversary of its mission to drive ‘transformative change for people and the planet’. This year's theme, Restore Our Earth, reminds us that as we return to normal, we can't go back to business-as-usual.