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March - Annual Herbs

in Andalucia, Spain
By Nick Nutter | 8 Jul 2019
Borage Basil Coriander Curly Parsley Dill Garlic

If you have been following the plan over the last two months, you should now have a good framework for the herb garden with your permanent shrubby herbs and the perennials established. Hopefully, you have some pockets of ground left to sow the annual herbs. All can be grown from seed sown directly into the soil.
All do best in well prepared, composted, well-drained, soil. Keep the soil damp until the seedlings are well established. Parsley is everyone’s favourite herb. It will thrive for two years or longer but is often treated as an annual. Some gardeners maintain that the flavour is best in the first year. There are two types of parsley, flat leafed and curly. Some say that flat leaf is tastier than curly but then curly is more decorative on the plate. Grow both and decide which you prefer.



Italian basil is the taste of summer. Slightly anise in flavour, it goes well with tomatoes, salads and in pesto. Italian basil is the broad-leafed kind. Greek basil has a similar taste but has small leaves. Basil originated in Africa and came to the Mediterranean via the Middle East and Asia. It likes it hot so sow in full sun towards the end of March and keep the roots moist. Other types, such as Thai or Asian basil, have a more clove-like taste, small leaves, and are suitable for all Asian recipes.

Where would we be without garlic? Ideally, garlic cloves are planted in the autumn. They develop a strong root system over the winter that then supports the rapid leaf growth needed to form large bulbs. Cultivated bulbs are available in the autumn from garden centres. In spring though you will have to buy untreated bulbs from a market stall. Split the bulb into its separate cloves and plant them ten cms apart with the tip of the clove just showing. The bulbs will be ready in the autumn. They will not be as large as autumn sown garlic but will be perfectly acceptable. Split a few bulbs straight away and plant the cloves. You will now be in the garlic growing cycle. Just picked garlic is wonderfully soft and juicy. The juice is slightly sticky, with a robust yet sweet garlic flavour. Dry bulbs in the sun until the stem is withered and then string them together. If kept in a dry, dark, cool place they will keep until your next crop is ready. Check periodically that the bulbs are still firm. Discard any that go soft.

Coriander is a member of the carrot family, essential in many Moroccan, Middle Eastern, Indian and Asian dishes. Sow the seeds thickly, as you would grass, and keep moist. Sow in succession every month until June for a supply from May to September. Get more value from your coriander by using the finely chopped stalks in cooking and the leaves in salads and as a garnish.



In the right ground, Dill will grow to one metre in height. It has attractive, feathery, foliage, very similar to fennel to which it is related. The slightly tangy leaves and stem are good with tomatoes, potatoes, fish and eggs. Dill will self-seed so, with an annual top dressing of compost, will look after itself.

Finally, Borage, but only if you have the space. This is another herb that will self-seed. The hairy leaves taste like cucumber, but its main value is its decorative, edible, flowers that are loved by bees (and chickens) and its efficacy as an accelerator on the compost heap.

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History in Andalucia municipality

Prehistoric Andalucia | Evolution of Homo Sapiens
History of Andalucia | The Lure of Gold
Phoenicians in Andalucia | Where the Phoenicians came from
Phoenicians in Andalucia | The First Civilisations in Spain
Phoenicians in Andalucia | Phoenicians meet the Iberians
Phoenicians in Andalucia | Phoenician expansion in Andalucia
Phoenicians in Andalucia | Competition between Greeks and Phoenicians
Phoenicians in Andalucia | The Carthaginians triumph
Amphorae, the container of choice for 4000 years
The Barbary Pirates scourge of the Andalucian Coast
Romans in Andalucia | Rome takes over from Carthage
Romans in Andalucia | Rome subdues the Iberians 205 BC to 139 BC
Romans in Andalucia | Pax Andalucia between 100 BC and 180 AD, the Romanisation of Baetica
Romans in Andalucia | Decline and Fall of the Romans
History of Roman Mining in the Rio Tinto area
History of Andalucia | The Zanclean Deluge
Christopher Columbus, Life, Voyages and Death
Phoenicians in Andalucia | The Phoenician wreck of Mazarron II
Mithraism - a Roman mystery
Neanderthals 500kya to 45kya
Terminology, Cultures, Epochs and Eras
Solitary, poor, nasty, brutish and short
Mining in Huelva Province
Romans in Andalucia | Roman Engineering and Building
Romans in Andalucia | Roman Industry in Andalucia
Climate in Prehistoric Andalucia
Neanderthal to Modern Human Transition 45kya to 25kya
The Neolithic Expansion 5800 – 4700 BC
A Shaky Start for Modern Humans 25 kya - 16 kya
The Mesolithic in Andalucia 16kya - 5800 BC
The Neolithic Expansion 9500 - 5800 BC
From Muslim to Moriscos
Iberian Culture and Society
The Tartessians and the Fabled Land of Tartessos
Muslim Invasion of Hispania 711 AD
Muslim Occupation of al-Andalus 711 - 756 AD
The Independent Emirate 756 – 929 AD
Caliphate of Córdoba 929 - 1031 AD
The First Taifa Period 1031 – 1091 AD
The Almoravid Dynasty 1091 - 1147 AD
The Almohad Dynasty 1145 - 1248 AD
Economy of al-Andalus 711 - 1492 AD
Consolidating the Emirate of Granada 1248 – 1272 AD
The History of Flamenco
Emirate of Granada 1272 - 1482 AD
The Granada War 1482 - 1492 AD
Mining in Málaga Province
Mining in Seville Province
Mining in Córdoba Province
Mining in Granada Province
Mining in Jaén Province
Mining in Almeria Province
Nobody Expected the Spanish Inquisition - as we perceive it today
Behind the Spanish Inquisition
The Early Years of the Spanish Inquisition
Spreading the Spanish Inquisition
An alternative guide to discover Andalucia through its street art


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