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The Beginner's Guide to Edible Herbs: 26 Herbs Everyone Should Grow and Enjoy Paperback – April 17, 2010


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

While there may be a real trick to growing luscious heirloom tomatoes and a necessary dedication to raising a crop of good-for-you beans, herbs are not quite so demanding in terms of time or space; yet these little garden powerhouses can make a big impact in almost any dish. From zesty sauce staples like garlic and oregano to the more nuanced flavors of marjoram and tarragon, herbs are a must in the kitchen as well as in the landscape. And while Smith's beginner's guide may be a gem of simplicity, it's also chock-full of supplemental information including sumptuous recipes and inventive tips for household applications. Each herb's profile covers the many ways it can be harvested and used, and Smith includes helpful at-a-glance charts summarizing pertinent cultural information such as soil and light requirements, mature height, and planting distances. Perfect for novice gardeners, Smith's compact guide can also be appreciated by experienced hands who want to get back to the basics. --Carol Haggas

From the Back Cover

Grow, Eat, and Preserve 26 Herbs

Anise Hyssop
Basil
Bay Laurel
Bee Balm
Borage
Calendula
Caraway
Catnip
Chives
Cilantro & Coriander
Dill
Fennel
Garlic
Hyssop
Lavender
Lemon Balm
Lemon Verbena
Marjoram
Mint
Oregano
Parsley
Rosemary
Sage
Savory
Tarragon
Thyme
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 145 pages
  • Publisher: Storey Publishing, LLC (April 17, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603425284
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603425285
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #562,768 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By BeachBrights VINE VOICE on May 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
Length: 2:46 Mins
God has been good to my little garden. I planted MINT, BASIL, PARSLY, STEVIA, ROSEMARY, LAVENDER & CILANTRO. I just wish I had read this book before I planted my herb garden. You see, my MINT is over taking my garden and had I read this book, I would have known this was going to happen. So today, I am going to dig up my mint and plant it in a container.

This book spares no punches. Right away in the introduction the author is quick to discuss - Where to Plant the herbs, Tending/Attending, How Many Plants you Will Need and Harvesting. Make sure to pay special attention to the Garden Hun section. Hence, my MINT debacle.

The next section of this fantastic book talks about 26 herbs. I like how the author devotes a few pages to each herb, discussing in detail the species, how to grow it, harvesting, planning & quantity and most importantly uses.

The book also has herb recipes which I found throws off the flow of the book just a bit. One minute you are reading recipes for a herb cheese spread and then the next you are reading about Catnip. It was probably just me :)

The book concludes with a "Herbs at a Glance" chart that makes a good reference for planning your garden.

~XOXO~
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Diane Hoffmaster on April 21, 2010
Format: Paperback
It seems like more and more people are becoming interested in gardening. Whether it is because they are trying to save money at the grocery store or just prefer the taste of a home grown tomato, this book will help accent all your favorite recipes with herbs that were picked fresh from the garden.

I am not going to list every herb included in this book since that would take up too much space. I WILL say that they range from the common (dill, mint, oregano, basil) to the more unusual (Hyssop, Bee Balm, Borage, and Calendula) and many more in between.

The introduction includes helpful information on growing herbs in the garden. How much sun should they get and what types of soils do they prefer? Which herbs start well from seed and which ones should be started from plants you buy at your local garden center? There is also a small section on drying and freezing herbs for use once the gardening is done for the summer.

Each chapter is broken down by herb and includes not just gardening information but also suggestions on how to use them. For example, some herbs have medicinal purposes, some are great in certain recipes, and others are wonderful when placed in a muslin bag and added to your bath to relieve stress. The book also makes numerous references to which herbs are actually beneficial to your garden in terms of repelling pests and attracting bees.

Since the book is broken down by herb, the recipes are scattered throughout the book as are the various uses for them such as medicinal uses and flavored vinegars . I thought it might be better to arrange the book in chapters such as gardening, recipes, preserving, medicinal uses, etc.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By E. Mennemeyer on April 13, 2012
Format: Paperback
For anyone looking to learn about herbs this is a well put together book. Most of the book focuses on the 26 herbs, though the concise introduction written by Edward Smith (author of "The Vegetable Gardener's Bible) covers basic growing information. This really is a focused guide for beginners. Mixed in with the individual herb listings are many recipes to incorporate these herbs into your kitchen. Each herb listing has a description, photo, guides to growing and harvesting, uses and preservation. The author even includes commonly accepted companion planting information (when available)and culinary connections.

The herbs features are not specific to any particular area. They were chosen because of the frequent occurrence of the herb in our kitchens or plant nurseries. A possible negative of this book is that it may not contain the herb you're interested in growing. But with so many books suffering from too many listings and not enough individual information, this book is a refreshing change.

Pros: Great introduction in growing and using these 26 herbs.

Cons: Only covers 26 herbs.

Bottom Line: If you're looking for a quick guide to what herbs to focus your energy on, pick up this book. It's exactly right.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Laura W on January 3, 2012
Format: Paperback
How to grow and care for, and creative ways to use 26 herbs: anise hyssop, basil, bay laurel, bee balm, borage, calendula, caraway, catnip, chives, cilantro, dill, fennel, garlic, hyssop, lavender, lemon balm, lemon verbena, marjoram, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, tarragon, thyme.
Lovely photos. Comprehensive info on how to grow.
Fun recipes such as Cold Care Tea, Provencal Vinegar, Basil Beans, Cilantro Pesto, Lavender Honey, Borage Cooler, Caraway Cookies, Herbal Cheeses, Ketchups, Mustards, Pickles & Salsas, Herbal Oils, Bouquet Garni, and more. I made the Scarborough Fair Seasoned Salt according to his instructions and it made a lovely gift. Drying the parsley with his method makes a surprisingly delicious dried parsley you will want to snack on! Really, who knew?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Susan on September 22, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This little book is really nice to have around the house if you grow herbs. It not only has growing tips but also recipes and other uses of the herbs.
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