Indian Spices To Grow In Garden

Updated: Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 3:03 [IST]
 
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Spices are the soul of Indian cuisines and without them the food is simply bland. Apart from adding flavours to your food, the medicinal properties they hold are of immense value. Many of us dream to have a garden that incloses spices as a part of it, but not many have a space for the same. Nor it is possible to grow all spices in your home garden due to various environmental and climatic conditions. Having your own spice garden is a heaven in itself, try and enjoy it by planting your favourite spices. But, don't forget to keep climatic conditions in a loop.

There are few spices that can be easily grown at our very own green patch which serves both medicinal and culinary benefits. Here is the list of spices that can be easily grown in your garden.

Basil

You can easily grow basil all year round in a warm climate. It is grown in hot weather with lots of sunlight, water and space for its roots. So, it is very important to plant them in a large pot or where there is sufficient place for them to grow.

Chilli

Chilli plants grow in small to medium sized bushes and are half a meter to two meters tall. Chilli seeds need 20°C to germinate, and it should be 30°C or more for the fruit to ripen. Night temperatures should not drop below 15°C.

Ginger

Ginger can be grown in a sheltered spot, filtered sunlight, warm weather and moist soil. The best planting time for ginger is late winter/early spring. Growing it hardly takes any space. Every rhizome you plant will first only grow a few leaves at one spot. Over time it will become a dense clump and slowly get bigger.

Rosemary

Rosemary is a perennial, woody shrub that grows for two to three years. It needs good drainage, air circulation and plenty of sunlight. Buy a small plant and transplant into a clay pot. Plant the herb in a half-and-half mixture of potting soil and cactus sand. Do not over water. Water it only when the top half inch of the soil is dry.

Thyme

You needn't worry much about watering this plant. It grows well in drier environments and doesn't need a lot of nutrients. If it is exposed to a lot of shade, it will still grow, but not as expected. So ensure it gets lots of sunlight!

Curry leaves

These are an indigenous variety which is found in most of the household. The optimum temperature for it is between 26-37°C and best suited for a tropical climate.

Coriander

Coriander seeds do not need much care. It only requires watering until the flower develops and set seeds. In hot weather this may take as little as 4-6 weeks from sowing, but during cool weather it can take several months. Harvesting coriander seeds is an easy affair. Just wait till the flower heads are dry. Then cut the stalk, stick the whole thing upside down in a big paper bag and leave it in a dry spot for a couple of weeks. Now, shake it and bash it. All the coriander seeds should fall off and you can pull out the bare stalk.

Fennel

Fennel seeds are used as an after-meal digestive as well as a spice. It needs a well-drained soil and sunlight.

Story first published:  Tuesday, March 19, 2013, 3:03 [IST]
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