Just in time for summer, here are some tips from our resident plant expert at St Albans, Anthony Saunders, on how to make fragrent dried herbs.
.It is best to pick herbs for drying just before they come into flower. The day they are picked should be a dry day before the sun is hot. Ancient traditions hold that the herbs should preferably be picked by hand or animplement which is made of steel. Remove leaves from stalks of large varieties and tie smaller herbs into sprays. Place the herbs in thin layers on trays and leave in an airing cupboard, or somewhere warm and dry. When your herbs are dry, remove from the stalks and rub down with a rolling pin and put them into small tins or jars and store in a cool dry place.
Anthony, who is a trained horticulturalist, is interested in all aspects of gardening.
‘At St Albans we have different herbs at different properties’, he says. ‘Mint and rosemary are the main ones because they are so easy to grow.
‘Where I live, there is a courtyard area and we have a little garden where we grow herbs, flowers and vegetables.’
‘It’s hard to say what my favourite herb is, but I love rosemary and lavender and for culinary purposes I love fresh coriander.’