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Having an herb garden can help demonstrate to potential buyers that your home is one in which to put down "roots." Though an herb garden may be a relatively small landscaping addition, studies have shown that well maintained and landscaped yards can increase your home's value up to 11 percent.

When beginning the planning of your herb garden it is important to consider two things:

  • what are your needs when it comes to cooking, displaying, and your general usage of herbs?
  • what is the condition of your soil (sandy, clay, dry, shady, sunny)?

Choosing your herbs
So consider for a moment what you use and would use herbs for. If you mostly use herbs for cooking, consider planting rosemary for use in chicken dishes, dill for use in seafood dishes, parsley for garnishing, and mint for use in iced teas.

If you are interested in using herbs for home remedies you may consider planting:

  • clary sage (salvia sclarea) -- can be dried and used in teas for aiding in relaxation and digestion.
  • comfrey (symphytum officinale) -- effective for use on animals. May help in arthritis and rheumatism in dogs. Also good as a salve on bruises.
  • oregano (origanum vulgare) -- can be used to ease respiratory issues.
  • chamomile (matricaria chamomilla) -- another great herb to dry and use in teas. You can also used the dried white flowers in a bath to calm irritated skin.

Don't limit yourself when it comes to using the herbs you grow in your garden. They may be used fresh to flavor foods and garnish dishes. You can dry them to use as seasonings year round. Many herbs can be made into salves or all natural medicinal treatments.

Soil Condition
There are several factors to consider when analyzing your soil. The most important of these is drainage. You do not want water to stand, or pool, around your plants. This can cause mold to begin growing on your plants or may even kill them.

Another important factor is the amount of sunlight your herbs will receive. Most herbs enjoy full sunlight, though they will require regular watering if they are in direct sun for the entire day.

If you think that even after preparing the soil for planting that it still won't be sufficient for growing your herbs, then I recommend buying some good potting soil and planting your herbs in 12" or 18" pots. This would also be ideal for individuals who live in condos or residences where digging in the yard is not an option. By having your herbs in pots, you will be able to have them inside during winter months. Herbs all year round!

You should find that cultivating an herb garden is relatively easy and low maintenance. Few pests attack herbs, other than the occasional aphid or mite. And not only will you be able to enjoy some of these herbs this summer, you will also have the perennial favorites again next year.

There are simple ways that you can increase the appeal of your home, whether you are planning to sell or planning to stay for years to come. By including an herb garden in the plans for your backyard landscaping you can ensure that certain touches of "home" will go further than just the dinner plate.

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