The Harvest!

Most herbs can be harvested throughout the season. Remember not to cut too much at one time so your plant will continue to grow all summer. The best time to harvest the foliage of most herbs is just prior to blooming. Herbs should be clipped in the morning after the dew has evaporated but before the day becomes too hot. If you let them form, the flowers of the culinary herbs are edible as well! 

When seed-heads change color and turn dry, it’s time to harvest them. Cut them on a hot, dry day; moist seeds may mold in storage. If kept properly they can be used throughout the fall and winter (cilantro seed/coriander is one.)

Drying Your Herbs

To capture your herbs’ flavor at their best, use fresh. But at the end of the season, you will want to harvest all of your plant and drying or freezing your herbs will maintain their flavor best. The most simple way to dry herbs in bunches upside down in a dark, well-ventilated area.

Another method is to spread herbs on a rack and cover with a paper towel. You can also use your oven or microwave. To dry herbs in the oven, spread on a cookie sheet and bake at no more than 48 degrees C until leaves are dry and crispy. To dry in the microwave, spread herbs in an even layer between paper towels, and heat for 2 min. checking every 30 seconds. Leave on counter to complete drying.

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