Traditionally used in beans, vegetables and poultry. Fresh savory also adds a delightful flavor to salads, is an important component of Herbes de Provence. This is the better known savory - it is an annual plant as opposed to perennial Winter Savory!
How to Sow
Sowing Seed Indoors:
- Sow 1–2 seeds per inch after the last frost.
- Sow shallowly, as light is required for germination.
- Keep soil moist until germination.
- Thin later to stand 8" apart, in rows 18" apart.
- Keep young seedlings well watered.
Planting in the Garden:
- Start seeds inside in early spring.
- Ideal temperatures are 86°F (30°C) during the day and 68°F (20°C) at night.
- Sow seeds on top of the growing medium, gently pressing them into place, as light is required for germination.
- Mist to moisten and keep moist until germination. Transplant to individual containers when seedlings have 4 true leaves. Transplant outside after the last frost, spacing 8" apart.
How to Grow
- Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating.
- Mulches also help retain soil moisture and maintain even soil temperatures. For herbs, an organic mulch of aged bark or shredded leaves lends a natural look to the bed and will improve the soil as it breaks down in time. Always keep mulches off a plant’s stems to prevent possible rot.
- Keep plants well-watered during the growing season, especially during dry spells. Plants need about 1 inch of rain per week during the growing season. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. It’s best to water with a drip or trickle system that delivers water at low pressure at the soil level. If you water with overhead sprinklers, water early in the day so the foliage has time to dry off before evening, to minimize disease problems. Keep the soil moist but not saturated. Basil should not be allowed to dry out.
- Prune established plants back by one-half to two-thirds in early spring if they are getting too large or leggy.
- Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.
Harvest and Preserving Tips
- Cut for fresh use once the plants have become established.
- Entire plants can be harvested when flowers are in the bud stage.
- To dry, hang the plant in a warm, dark, well-ventilated location.