Cover Image: Grow Your Own Herbs

Grow Your Own Herbs

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Member Reviews

What a great resource!  From soil type and propagation to trouble shooting pests and disease to harvesting, preserving and cooking with your bounty, this is a comprehensive book on the most common varieties of herbs for a home gardener.  In addition, there is a comprehensive guide to each herb - listing its growing requirements, ways to harvest and preserve and it uses.  The book is punctuated with gorgeous photos.
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A one-stop shop for all aspects of growing, storing, and using herbs. The book includes basic gardening skills, preserving methods,  recipes such as butters and pastes, and various herb-specific information. Some of the herbs described can be grown indoors on a windowsill while others grow into large trees.
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Susan Belsinger and Arthur O. Tucker's Grow Your Own Herbs showcases 40 culinary herb varieties that can be easily grown at home to enhance your cooking.  In addition to cultivation, growing, and harvesting tips, there are also recipes for making syrups, vinegars, butters, and pastes.  If you're new to gardening or like the brightness of fresh herbs, this book is for you.
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A great book for beginners and more experienced gardeners alike, covering forty herbs to grow in your garden. Each herb is described thoroughly, including culinary uses, how to harvest and propagate, and how to dry to use year round. The instruction for growing are comprehensive and clear, with lots of photos. Definitely recommended!

#GrowYourOwnHerbs #NetGalley
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I loved this book !
It explained everything I needed to know in an easy to understand way! I loved how it described everything from the growing process to different ways to use the fresh herbs in different ways. I loved it so much that I bought a copy for my self. I can't wait to try out some of theses ideas.
I volunteered to read this book from Timber Press in return for my honest feedback. The thoughts and opinions expressed within are my own.
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For the beginner and also the experienced gardener, this book provides basic information about growing herbs, including some lesser known herbal plants such as bee balm.  In particular, there is an excellent discussion of rationale for not growing certain herbs from seed and the basics of growing conditions for herbs.  The section on diagnosing diseases/pests is a bit too general and I would suggest expansion with additional photos.  The chapter on harvesting, drying and preserving herbs, was particularly nicely done.  As a botanist and long-time gardener, I even learned some new hints for success.  The final portion of the book highlights 40 different herbal plants, including photos, tips for growing, harvest/preservation, and tasting notes.  Reading this section, I found myself wanting to try some of the herbs I'm not used to growing, such as black cumin and saffron.

In general, this is an excellent reference for all levels of expertise.  It would have been nice to see some additional incorporation of sustainable horticulture methods in this book.  For example, the authors appear to promote the use of sphagnum peat moss in their soil mixtures, even though harvesting of peat contributes significantly to the CO2 levels in the atmosphere and the bogs from which it is harvested take centuries to regenerate.  I would hope this could be updated for future editions.
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Very well-done reference book, field guide and cookery aid all in one.
Loved how bright and welcoming the photos were and how organized the book was. Suitable for the backyard gardener or urban container grower, growing tips, preserving information and field identification photos are all useful information, easy to digest.
Excellent resource!
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This has helpful information that I hope to utilize for my own herb garden. The layout was nice and the pictures used were beautiful.
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What an amazing reference book for herbs. First I loved how the author categorizes all the different plants with how to grow and take care of them, as well as clear images on how to identify each individual herb and then she also includes recipes and other useful things you can use each herb for.  It is like an herbal encyclopedia and cookbook all in one. This is now one of my top favorite for herbal reference books.
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If you enjoy growing herbs to cook with, this book will be a great addition to your reference library. Full of nice photos for reference, it covers 40 herbs that you might like to add in your recipes. This book includes instructions on how to get started with advice on soil, containers, pests, watering and other helpful advice.

Then the section on herbs is full of basic information that you need to know, and can refer to throughout the growing season. You learn if each herb is an annual or perennial, how much sun they need, how it should be watered, and how much sun they prefer. As the season moves on, you will be able to refer to cultivation and propagation information then harvesting and preserving. There are even cooking tips to assist you. 

If you are looking for a basic reference book for cooking with fresh herbs, Gown Your Own Herbs is a good book to add to your gardening library.
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I loved this book, I felt it was something I need to study and not only read.
I am a big fan of herbs and got plenty of them so I assume I know something about them but this book was so good and comprehensive that I learnt a lot.
I loved the advice, the ideas and will surely try some of the recipes.
The picture were gorgeous.
Highly recommended!
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine.
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This book has a lot of great tips for herb gardening.  It’s a thorough guide to growing your own herbs with all the information you need in one place.  The pictures are beautiful too.  I highly recommend this book to beginning and experienced herb gardeners.  I received an arc copy of this book via netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
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Love this book! It shows you how to grow herbs inside to always feel like you have an active garden, even in the cold winter! Overall a great book, highly recommended.
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This is a pretty standard gardening book featuring 40 of the most popular herbs for the home garden. Each one features a stock photo, a description of the taste and the types of ways the herb is typically used, and detailed growing information. All of this goes into great detail. There are also basic recipes for how to make syrups, herb butters, pastes and such, plus some information on how to dry herbs, container gardening, common plant problems, etc.

It looks like this is a revision of an earlier book these three authors put out with the same publishing company, The Culinary Herbal ( That one featured 97 herbs and it sounds like there were some more rare herbs and some wild edible ones like wood sorrel (which I would have liked to see).

The book does not feature recipes to use the herbs. I would have liked to see recipes for each herb and also things like tasting charts, symbols to show whether things were annuals and how difficult they are to grow, etc.

All in all, this is a well done book but it just feels a little throw-away. It is the 17th book by the main author and maybe things are just getting a little formulaic? I don't know, but I tend to take notes and screen shots and highlight, bookmark, etc. as I read and there just wasn't really anything here that was new to me or that I found particularly inspiring. New gardeners and those who are not familiar with herbs may have very different reactions.

My rating system:
1 = hated it
2 = it was okay
3 = liked it
4 = really liked it
5 = love it, plan to purchase, and/or would buy it again if it was lost

I read a temporary digital ARC of the book for the purpose of review.
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This is a pretty good book for explaining both the basic and intricate pieces of growing/using herbs. It's written in an easy to understand way and I enjoyed the addition of recipes for syrups and butters. I will definitely be using the herb butter recipe in my cooking from now on. I can't wait to try it on a warm, crusty baguette!

*Book received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
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Having an herb garden is on my list of New Year’s resolutions for 2019, so I have read my fair share of books in this category.  I would recommend this particular one to others - especially those growing herbs for culinary purposes.  It has a “getting started” area - which includes topics such as soil, water, weather, containers, nutrients, seeds, cuttings, and pests. Next is a section on “harvesting and preserving,” - which includes ways of actually using herbs in the kitchen. Simple recipes for syrup, vinegar, paste, and butter are all good resources to have at your fingertips.

The final section of the book is the 40 herbs in greater detail. It provides a nice color picture of each herb, with a key that includes basic information such as annual/perennial, planting zone, sun, water, and soil needs. The accompanying commentary for each herb features (1) cultivation and propagation, (2) harvesting and preserving, and (3) tasting notes and cooking tips.  

This book has a ton of good information but - as with other books I’ve read - lacks any real guidance regarding how much of each herb to plant, and if you are using containers - what size container to use.  

Although I haven’t blogged about this book yet, it will be part of an upcoming blog regarding my own herb garden, which you will be able to find at
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I loved this book! There are so many beautiful pictures and tons of great details on how to grow your own herbs and the condition and upkeep that each requires. There are also tips on cooking these herbs and some recipes for them as well. This is a perfect edition for any gardener or aspiring gardener. There is even a section on growing plants in containers, so you do not have to have acres of land in order to utilize this knowledge and become a gardener yourself! I will be planting my own herbs and can't wait to use the knowledge I have learned in this book and make our meals even more delicious with fresh herbs!
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For less than the price of one packet of fresh herbs or small jar of dried, you can have an entire year of them if you Grow Your Own Herbs.

A one-stop shop for all aspects of growing, storing, and using herbs. The book includes basic gardening skills, preserving methods, basic recipes such as butters and pastes, and herb-specific information. Some of the herbs described here can be grown on a sunny window while others grow into fifty foot trees.

The forty plus herbs included will be plenty for most households. All the common herbs like basil, oregano and cilantro are included. Here is the complete list.

Anise hyssop	Mexican oregano
Basil	Mexican tarragon
Bay laurel	Mint
Black cumin	Monarda
Calendula	Nasturtium
Chervil	Oregano
Chives	Parsley
Cilantro	Roman chamomile
Dill	Rosemary
Fennel	Saffron
French tarragon	Sage
Garlic	Salad burnet
German chamomile	Scented geranium
Horseradish	Sorrel
Lavender	Stevia
Leaf celery	Summer savory
Lemon balm	Sweet marjoram
Lemongrass	Thyme
Lemon verbena	Viola
Lovage	Winter savory

Each herb’s section includes at least one photo; growth zones; fully grown size; soil and watering requirements; planting, cultivation, harvesting and preserving methods; differences between variants; and tasting and cooking tips.

If you like herbs and want the freshest possible or to save money off store bought herbs, Grow Your Own Herbs is a great choice. 4 stars!

Thanks to Timber Press and NetGalley for a copy in exchange for my honest review.
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So good.  So, so good.  

My love of gardening started with herbs.  I love the possibilities and versatility that herbs give: they can be used topically or as culinary tools or medicinally, and I try to use them in every way possible.  Belsinger and Tucker have compiled the many uses of forty herbs in this wonderful book, making me love herbs even more, something I didn't think was possible.

I'll start with the photography, which is lovely.  There are photos of herb gardens that give me ideas on new ways to grow herbs at home.  Growing conditions are discussed, as are tips for successful growing and harvesting.  I particularly enjoyed the section on propagation, something that I don't currently do much of but have wanted to try, particularly with my perennial herbs.  Layering and cutting are the methods for these herbs, and Belsinger and Tucker give, in detail, the instructions for doing so.  There is also a large section on health problems herbs encounter and methods for preventing and healing those problems.  Harvesting and preserving are discussed, and as anyone who lives in a region with four seasons can attest, preservation of herbs is crucial for enjoying them year-round.  After all, why go to all that work to only use herbs for a handful of months?

If I had to pick a favorite section, I'd have to list two: the section on using herbs in the kitchen, and the section which includes forty different herbs and their uses.  The section on herbs in the kitchen is brief, but I love that it gives me new ideas on how to preserve and use my herbs.  For example, when I plant basil, my first thought is of pesto, but why not make a basil vinegar or even a basil syrup?  This book shows me how.  

As for the forty herbs, all are accompanied with specific information on growing, harvesting, preserving, and using.  The aforementioned basil is here, with several of its cultivars and their specific flavors and uses.  The authors recommend basil types by their Latin and common names, which is fantastic, and as with the rest of the book the photography is enticing.

In all, this is one book that would be welcome in any herb enthusiast's library.  Thanks to NetGalley, the authors and the publisher for allowing me to read an ARC.
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Book Description
Nothing tastes better than herbs harvested fresh from the garden. In Grow Your Own Herbs, garden experts Susan Belsinger and Arthur O. Tucker share everything a new gardener or home cook needs to know to grow the forty most important culinary herbs. Grow Your Own Herbs starts with basic gardening information with details on soil, watering, and potting. Profiles of 40 herbs—including popular varieties like basil, bay laurel, lemon verbena, tarragon, savory, thyme, and more—feature tasting notes, cultivation information, and harvesting tips. Additional information includes instructions for preserving and storing, along with techniques for making delicious pastes, syrups, vinegar, and butters. Grow Your Own Herbs is perfect for those new to gardening, gardeners with limited space, and anyone looking to add fresh herbs to their daily meals.
My Thoughts
There are 2 things that I have learned over the past 5 years(ok, a lot more than 2). Any part of my yard that can be reworked to add raised beds is a good thing, and I don’t need to grow 40 hot pepper plants since none of my family/friends eat them(just me, yum). This has freed up some space and allows me to try to grow new things every year. Last year, I focused on adding flowers for the pollinators, and this year, I am growing a lot more herbs.
Grow Your Own Herbs has 4 main chapters: Growing Herbs at Home, Harvesting and Preserving Your Herbs, Using Herbs in the Kitchen, and 40 of the Best Homegrown Culinary Herbs. Each herb example starts with a picture, whether it is an annual or perennial, how tall it will get, and what zone(s) it will grow in. There is information regarding cultivation and propagation, harvesting and preserving, as well as tasting notes.
 I am not a beginning gardener, but if I was, I think that there is more than enough detail for you to successfully grow herbs, and for me, there are varieties I plan to sow this year. We have had a cool and damp spring in NY( zone 7), but, I have started my herbs indoors and they will be moving outside very soon.  I am growing sweet marjoram, stevia, and rosemary based on the guidance provided, and I am confident that with the information provided, I will have a great harvest( weather permitting). 
A great resource and I haven’t tried any of the recipes yet, but plan to make herb vinegar and herb butter.
I received a DRC from Timber Press through NetGalley.
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