...Herbs & Veggies...

    

Herbs

(Skip down to Veggies!)

We sell fresh potted herbs year-round, with our largest selection available in April, May and June. Herbs are often planted in gardens, flowerbeds or planters around the end of May; be sure to protect from frost and cold temperatures until overnight temperatures rise over 10 C. Herbs will grow rapidly over the summer months when provided with full or partial sun. Allow the soil to dry slightly between watering and fertilize regularly. Use your herbs thoughout the summer and fall or harvest and dry them for the winter months.



Herbs can also be grown indoors through the fall, winter and spring months! Just make sure that they get plenty of light, water them as needed and fertilize occasionally. Some people prefer to start herbs by seed, which can also be done successfully year-round. At Belgian we have our full selection of herb seeds available from January through August, with select varieties available the rest of the year.

A great spot for outdoor herbs is near your patio or deck, making it easy to snip a few stems and add to your favourite dishes!



Listed below are the potted varieties we stock; please note that many types are only available in April, May and June. Our seed rack is also an excellent source for many different herb varieties from January through August.

Basil - Columnar

French Sorrel

Rosemary

Basil - Dark Opal

French Tarragon

Rosemary - Barbeque

Basil - Lettuce Leaf

Garlic

Rosemary - Trailing

Basil - Perpetual Pesto

Lavender – English

Sage - Pineapple

Basil - Small Leaf

Lemon Balm

Sage - Purple

Basil - Thai

Lemongrass

Sage - Salvia (Green)

Bay Laurel

Lovage

Sage - Tri Colour

Catnip

Marjoram

Savory - Summer

Chamomile

Mint - Chocolate

Savory - Winter

Chervil

Mint - Mojito

Stevia

Chives

Mint - Peppermint

Thyme - Garden

Chives – Garlic

Mint - Spearmint

Thyme - Lemon

Coriander (Cilantro)

Oregano

Thyme - Silver

Curry

Oregano - Greek

Verbena - Lemon

Dill

Parsley - Curled

Vietnamese Coriander

Fennel

Parsley - Italian

 


* This is a reference listing only. We do carry most of the varieties listed, though some sell out quickly due to demand. Please come and visit us to see what is available. We do not produce a catalogue or do mail orders.




-open/close- -open/close-Success with Herbs – Care & Tips

Light:

Herbs require a Full Sun to Partial Sun location. Outdoors, most herbs prefer to be planted in a location where they will receive at least 4 hours of direct light.

Watering:

Herbs in planter pots or window boxes will need water more often then herbs planted in the garden. Allow containers to dry slightly then water thoroughly. Never let the pots sit in water and avoid allowing them to dry completely. During the summer when days are long and hot, you may need to water pots and planters more frequently.

When planting your herbs in the garden, water regularly when they are freshly planted, then as necessary to encourage roots to grow and the plant to become established.

Fertilizer:

There are many different types of fertilizer for herbs. We recommend using an all-purpose water-soluble fertilizer every two weeks for outdoor herbs in the garden or in pots. You can also use a slow release garden food, applying this once or twice in the growing season. For garden planting of herbs manure can be used, as well. Fish emulsion fertilizer is another alternative for feeding your herbs; just follow the directions on the container.

Pruning:

Trim herbs to maintain nicely shaped plants, then use the cuttings in the kitchen or on the barbeque! Some herbs will benefit from removing flowers as they start to grow; this allows your plant to put more energy towards growing more leaves that you can use for cooking, rather than growing seeds that you may not require. Read more about using fresh herbs in our Tip section below.

Repotting:

When repotting your herbs into containers outside, use a quality potting mix. Simply remove the plants from the pots, set it in the new pot and fill the remaining area with soil. When planting outdoors in the garden or flower bed, prepare the soil first by adding peat moss and manure, if necessary. Black earth or top soil are great to add more richness to the area as needed. 3 way mix is another great option for the garden, as it has a mix of manure, loam and earth.

Herb Tips:

Protect herbs from frost; do not plant outdoors until the end of May when the chance of frost has passed. For more information see our annual frost tips.
Use your herbs though out the summer and fall, or harvest and dry them for the winter months.

Most herbs do not adjust well to moving indoors after spending a summer outside.

-open/close- -open/close-Care and Tips for Common Herbs by Variety with Pictures




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 36-48"
Basil - Columnar
Ocimum (Annual)
An upright grower with glossy leaves, used extensively in Italian and Mediterranean dishes but can be added to almost any vegetable, meat and fish. Use fresh in pesto, tomato salads, sauces and pizza toppings. Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. This variety rarely flowers. It is compact in width making it great for containers. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18"
Basil - Dark Opal
Ocimum (Annual)
Purple-coloured foliage with pinkish flowers in summer. Used in Italian and Mediterranean dishes but can be added to almost any vegetable, meat and fish. Use fresh in pesto, tomato salads, sauces and pizza toppings, or make your own basil vinegar! Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Basil - Lettuce Leaf
Ocimum (Annual)
The most common basil variety with large green leaves and small white flowers that bloom in summer. Used extensively in Italian and Mediterranean dishes but can be added to almost any vegetable, meat and fish. Use fresh in pesto, tomato salads, sauces and pizza toppings. Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-36"
Basil - Perpetual Pesto
Ocimum (Annual)
Upright, compact grower with variegated leaves. Used in Italian and Mediterranean dishes but can be added to almost any vegetable, meat and fish. Use fresh in pesto, tomato salads, sauces and pizza toppings, or make your own basil vinegar! Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. This variety rarely flowers. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 6-8"
Basil - Small Leaf
Ocimum (Annual)
An attractive, dense globular bush used in Italian and Mediterranean dishes but can be added to almost any vegetable, meat and fish. Use fresh in pesto, tomato salads, sauces and pizza toppings, or make your own basil vinegar! Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Basil - Thai
Ocimum (Annual)
Dark green leaves with an aromatic anise/licorice flavour and scent; deep purple flowers bloom in late summer. Traditionally used in Thai and Vietnamese cuisines, use fresh leaves in noodle dishes, soups or Thai curries. Pick leaves and young shoots throughout the summer; can be dried or frozen for out-of-season use. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Sensitive to the cold; avoid windy locations. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
Calendula
Calendula (Annual)
Also known as “Pot Marigold” and grown primarily for its large, beautiful yellow and orange flowers. Attractive to Birds, Bees and Butterflies! Harvest flowers at their peak bloom and gently remove petals, which can be used whole, chopped or dried. Dried petals have been used as a substitute for saffron and can be added to salads, vegetable dishes, soups, butter, baked goods, custards and puddings. Leaves can be picked fresh and used in teas and salads. Remove old flowers to encourage new blooms. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-36"
Catnip
Nepeta (Perennial)
Perfect for cat lovers! The tall pungent grey-green heart-shaped leaves are irresistible to felines. Pick them fresh and use like mint in teas, or add to soups, sauces, stews and salads; can also be given to your cats as a special treat! Leaves can be dried to be used in cat toys. Grow in containers or in the garden. Can be an aggressive spreader - best grown in pots.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 15"
Chamomile
Matricaria (Annual)
An aromatic sweet herb that is primarily used in teas. Feathery foliage with small white daisy-like flowers in the summer. Harvest flowers when they are fully opened and use fresh, dried or frozen. Grow in containers or in the garden.






Sun to Part Shade
Height: 25"
Chervil
Anthriscus (Annual)
Also known as French Parsley, with bright green divided leaves and tiny white flowers which precede tiny narrow fruit. Leaves are best picked before flowers appear and used fresh, as drying and freezing loses a lot of their flavour. Add to salads, soups, butter, meats, fish, egg dishes and French cuisine, being sure to wait until the end of cooking time so as not to diminish its flavour. Trim flower stems to prolong foliage harvest. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 10-18"
Chives
Allium (Perennial)
A large clumping perennial with long hollow leaves with a distinctive taste, similar to a mild onion. Leaves can be cut at the base as needed and are best when fresh, though you can preserve by freezing. Chop Chives to use in salads, sauces, meats dishes, eggs, cheeses, butters and vinegars. Pale pinkish-purple flowers are edible and add a splash of colour to salads; cut flowers off as they open. Cut plant down to its base after flowering to produce fresh leaves. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 10-18"
Chives - Garlic
Allium (Perennial)
A large clumping perennial with long hollow leaves that taste similar to garlic. Leaves can be cut at the base as needed and are best when fresh, though you can preserve by freezing. Chop Chives to use in salads, sauces, meats dishes, eggs, cheeses, butters and vinegars. White clover-like flowers are edible and add a splash of colour to salads; cut flowers off as they open. Cut plant down to its base after flowering to produce fresh leaves. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
Cilantro
Coriandrum (Annual)
Specifically, the leaf portion of the Coriander/Cilantro plant. One of the most popular herbs worldwide, fresh leaves are used in salads, marinades, pesto, salsa, vinegars and fish dishes. Pale white or pink flowers can be cut at the base of its stems to encourage more foliage, however keep in mind the flowers bring about Coriander seeds. Cilantro has a fairly short growing season, replant or resow new plants throughout the season. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
Coriander
Coriandrum (Annual)
Specifically, the seeds of the Coriander/Cilantro plant. One of the most popular herbs worldwide, Coriander adds a spicy flavour to soups and stews and is a key ingredient in chilies, sauces, curries, exotic dishes and pickling spices. Harvest seeds by allowing the stems of its pale white or pink flowers to turn brown (usually in late summer). Store seeds in glass jars. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Curry
Helichrysum (Annual)
An exotic and interesting addition to any herb garden! An upright and compact grower with silver foliage and yellow-brown blooms that smell like curry spice; a sort of oddity since curries are traditionally composed of dozens of different spices. Leaves can be picked at any time for cooking and are often used to season salads, soups and meat dishes. Trim plants as needed to maintain its compact habit. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
Dill
Anethum (Annual)
With its feathery foliage and tall flowered stems in summer, Dill is a great addition to both the herb garden and the flowerbed! Pick leaves and use fresh as needed in soups, salads, cheeses, egg dishes, fish, meat, vegetables and sauces. Once plant starts to mature and flower, harvest its tall stems and flower heads to use for pickling or add to vinegars. For more tender leaves, replant or resow new plants throughout the season. Leaves and seeds can be dried or frozen. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
Fennel
Foeniculum (Annual)
Soft, feathery fern-like leaves have a distinctly anise or licorice flavour, with yellow flowers blooming in summer. Pick leaves and use fresh as needed in soups, salads, sauces, salad dressings and fish dishes. Seeds are often used in baking, sauces and sausages; cut seed heads and store in a paper bag as seeds drop easily when ripe. Dill and coriander can affect fennel seed production, so plan your herb garden/flowerbed accordingly. To harvest the tasty bulb, simply uproot entire plant at the end of the season and trim away any roots and leafy tops. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-24"
French Sorrel
Rumex (Perennial)
Rich in vitamins A, B1, C as well as potassium! Pick its large lemon-flavoured leaves fresh to use for salads, green sauces, soups, fish dishes and yogurt. White/pink flowers appear in summer; remove flower stems as they appear to encourage new foliage production. Water well to keep leaves delicious, but do not allow plant to sit in water. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Garlic
Allium (Perennial)
A kitchen necessity! Cut the long grass-like leaves (called ‘scapes’) after flower buds emerge but well before the white flowers appear. Use fresh scapes as a milder garlic seasoning or substitute for green vegetables by steaming, sautéing, stir-frying, pickling, grilling or infusing into vinegars; scapes can also be frozen. Delicious bulb can be harvested once flowers and leaves die back in late summer; best to hang in an airy place to dry. A fantastic natural flavouring for all cuisines and a great way to reduce the salt in your diet!



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Hyssop
Hyssopus (Perennial)
An acquired taste so use sparingly. Pick its small, dark green leaves as needed for soups, salads, stews, sausage, meats, fruit desserts, wine and teas. Its spikes of purple/pink flowers in summer are very attractive to Bees and Butterflies! Prune plant as needed to keep full and bushy. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-36"
Lavender - English
Lavendula (Perennial)
A traditional choice for any English garden with its aromatic shrub-like growing habit, grey-green leaves and tall spikes of purple flowers on woody stems. Flowers are picked as they begin to open and can be used fresh or dried in jams, jellies, baked goods, fruits and vinegars. Use sparingly as Lavender is an acquired taste! Dried flowers are most commonly used in potpourri and sachets, and can be added to bath water for a calming effect; can be distilled to acquire its essential oils. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-36"
Lemon Balm
Melissa (Perennial)
Roughly textured leaves have a strong lemon scent and are best picked fresh as they lose their potency quickly; can also preserve by drying or freezing. Use in teas and iced drinks, cheeses, soups, salads, sauces, meat, fish, poultry, jellies and dips. Add at the end of cooking to best utilize their flavour. Dried leaves can also be added to potpourri mixtures. Tiny white flowers appear in summer. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-36"
Lemongrass
Cymbopogon (Annual)
A great ornamental grass for the herb garden or flowerbed! A dense clump of long, thin yellowish-green leaves traditionally used in Thai, Malaysian and Indian cuisines; excellent in stir fries, curries, fish dishes and teas. Trim mature stems at the base, as the bottom of the stalk is the part used in cooking. Dried leaves should be softened by soaking in water before use. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-36"
Lemon Verbena
Aloysia (Annual)
Small pointed leaves with very strong lemon scent and flavour. Pick leaves and flowers as needed and add to teas or alcoholic beverages; can also be used in some desserts, fruit salads and jams. Can be a thirsty plant so keep a close eye on the soil to ensure proper moisture levels. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 18-36"
Lovage
Levisticum (Perennial)
The glossy divided leaves with hollow stems and fleshy roots are a great substitute for celery thanks to its distinctive scent and taste. Leaves and stems can be used in salads, soups, stocks, stews, rice dishes, stuffing, tomato sauces and meat dishes; can preserve by drying or freezing. Harvest seeds in late summer when ripe and use as a substitute for celery seeds or add to breads. Mature roots can be dug up and used for cooking. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 12"
Marjoram
Origanum (Annual)
Small oval green leaves are very delicate and are best picked fresh and added at the end of cooking Italian and Greek cuisines as well as soups, pizza sauce, pasta, stuffing, meat and chicken dishes. Leaves can be preserved by drying or freezing, so long as they are picked before small clusters of flowers appear on plant. Trim plant as needed to keep its shape. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8-12"
Mint - Chocolate
Mentha (Perennial)
Bronzy foliage with an incredible “peppermint patty” scent and flavour! Leaves can be picked fresh or dried and added to chocolate milk, cookies, cakes, candies, iced teas, salads or as a garnish for a chocolate martini; can also be added to potpourri mixtures. Harvest leaves and stems as needed to encourage plant to stay bushy. Can be grown in the garden but be aware that Mint is invasive and will form a large, spreading patch; best to keep it confined to a container.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8-12"
Mint - Mojito
Mentha (Perennial)
A pleasantly mild minty scent and flavour that can be used in place of other Mint varieties. Freshly picked leaves can be chopped or used whole in fruit dishes and green salads, and are a staple in mojito cocktails! Leaves can also be preserved by drying. Harvest leaves and stems as needed to encourage plant to stay bushy. Can be grown in the garden but be aware that Mint is invasive and will form a large, spreading patch; best to keep it confined to a container.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8-12"
Mint - Peppermint
Mentha (Perennial)
A vigorous spreader with dark green leaves on reddish stems. Freshly picked or dried leaves are most commonly used in teas but can also be used in fruit dishes and green salads. Harvest leaves and stems as needed to encourage plant to stay bushy. Can be grown in the garden but be aware that Mint is invasive and will form a large, spreading patch; best to keep it confined to a container.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8-12"
Mint - Spearmint
Mentha (Perennial)
The most common of the Mint varieties, a creeping sweet-scented perennial with oval, wrinkled leaves. Freshly picked or dried leaves can be added to teas, iced drinks, peas, new potatoes, lamb dishes, fruit dishes and to make mint sauces. Steep leaves in cream to make mint chocolate dishes! Harvest leaves and stems as needed to encourage plant to stay bushy. Can be grown in the garden but be aware that Mint is invasive and will form a large, spreading patch; best to keep it confined to a container.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 6"
Oregano
Origanum (Perennial)
A staple herb for Italian, Greek and Mexican cuisine! Pick its low-growing rounded leaves to use in pasta sauces, pizza sauces and any other dish with tomatoes and onions (like salads). Leaves can be used fresh or dried. Trim stems as needed to keep plant looking bushy. Clusters of deep pink flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 9"
Oregano - Greek
Origanum (Perennial)
A very flavourful herb used in Italian, Greek and Mexican cuisine. Pick its low-growing rounded leaves to use in pasta sauces, pizza sauces, salads and to season meats. Leaves can be used fresh or dried. Trim stems as needed to keep plant looking bushy. Clusters of deep pink flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8-12"
Parsley - Curled
Petroselinum (Biennial)
Very high in Vitamin C! The bright green and tightly-curled leaves are excellent to decorate savoury dishes, or finely chopped and added to sauces, fish dishes, salads, butter, dressings, stuffing and cooked vegetables. Leaves can be frozen or dried and sealed in jars. Its second year brings small flowers and lower leaf production; best to replant in spring. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 12-18"
Parsley - Italian
Petroselinum (Biennial)
Also known as Plain Parsley, it has a stronger flavour than Curled Parsley. Its flat dark green leaves are commonly used as a garnish and to flavour sauces, butters, dressings, stuffing and savoury dishes, or eaten on its own as a vegetable! Leaves can be frozen or dried and sealed in jars. Its second year brings small flowers and lower leaf production; best to replant in spring. A vigorous variety, can grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-48"
Rosemary
Rosmarinus (Tender Perennial)
A very popular upright herb with thin needle-like leaves that can be picked fresh or dried at any time. Use with chicken, fish, pork, potatoes or in stews, and try adding to butter, cream cheese, breads and marinades. Sprigs can be used to infuse oils and vinegars. Clusters of pale blue flowers appear in summer (primarily on mature plants) and are edible, a great addition to salads or fruit desserts. Must be overwintered indoors! Trim stems to encourage bushy growth habit. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-48"
Rosemary - Barbeque
Rosmarinus (Tender Perennial)
A very popular upright herb with thin needle-like leaves that can be picked fresh or dried at any time. Use with chicken, fish, pork, potatoes or in stews and marinades. Use the stems as barbeque skewers when grilling meats and vegetables! Sprigs can be cut and used to infuse oils and vinegars. Clusters of pale blue flowers appear in summer (primarily on mature plants) and are edible, a great addition to salads or fruit desserts. Must be overwintered indoors! Trim stems to encourage bushy growth habit. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 12-18"
Rosemary - Creeping
Rosmarinus (Tender Perennial)
A low-growing variety with the familiar thin needle-like leaves found in the Rosemary family, which can be picked fresh or dried at any time. Use with chicken, fish, pork, potatoes or in stew, and try adding to butter, cream cheese, breads and marinades. Sprigs can be cut and used to infuse oils and vinegars. Clusters of pale blue flowers appear in summer (primarily on mature plants) and are edible, a great addition to salads or fruit desserts. Must be overwintered indoors! Trim stems to encourage bushy growth habit. Grown best in containers due to it's trailing habit.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-48"
Rosemary - Upright
Rosmarinus (Tender Perennial)
A very popular upright grower with thin needle-like leaves that can be picked fresh or dried at any time. Use with chicken, fish, pork, potatoes or in stew, and try adding to butter, cream cheese, breads and marinades. Sprigs can be cut and used to infuse oils and vinegars. Clusters of pale blue flowers appear in summer (primarily on mature plants) and are edible, a great addition to salads or fruit desserts. Must be overwintered indoors! Trim stems to encourage bushy growth habit. Grow in containers or in the garden.



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 12-24"
Sage
Salvia (Perennial)
Very aromatic oblong grey-green leaves on woody stems that can be picked at any time and used fresh or dried and store for later use. A popular choice for using in meats, fish, poultry, pork, duck, sausages, stuffing, egg dishes, cheese and beans. Spikes of violet-blue flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 36-48"
Sage - Pineapple
Salvia (Annual)
A very large upright annual with fruity-smelling leaves and spikes of bright red flowers in summer. Attracts Hummingbirds! Great for adding height to the garden, smells just like pineapple! Leaves and flowers should be picked fresh as they can lose their flavour quickly. Young leaves can be used in salads and raw fruit dishes, while mature leaves are great when added to pork dishes and teas. Try adding a handful of crushed leaves into ice water and let steep for a few minutes, a great summer quencher!



Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24"
Sage - Purple
Salvia (Perennial)
A great substitute for common Sage with its woody stems and very aromatic oblong leaves that range from greenish-purple to deep purple in colour. Pick leaves at any time and use fresh or dry and store for later use. Add to teas, casseroles, sauces, stews, stuffing, meat, fish, poultry, pork, cheese and bean dishes. Spikes of violet-blue flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 12-24"
Sage - Tricolour
Salvia (Perennial)
A milder flavour than common Sage with bright multi-coloured leaves that can be picked at any time and used fresh or dried and stored for later use. Add to casseroles, sauces and stews. Spikes of violet-blue flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Keep out of cold winds and protect in winter. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 10-12"
Savory - Summer
Satureja (Annual)
Slender, erect stems and a very distinct flavour. Used in stuffing, pork pies and sausages. Whole sprigs can be boiled with broad beans or peas, or use in place of parsley as a garnish. Pinch off leaves or trim stems as needed. Small lilac flowers appear in summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.





Sun to Part Shade
Height: 10-12"
Savory - Winter
Satureja (Perennial)
A low growing shrub-like plant with small green leaves which can be picked fresh or dried and stored for later use. Commonly used when cooking beans as well as tomato sauces, egg and potato dishes; finely minced leaves can be used in mayonnaise, a great complement to poached fish. Masses of white flowers appear in late summer, which should be removed to encourage new foliage production. Trim plant to keep a bushy growing habit. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-40"
Stevia
Stevia (Annual)
Bright green leaves on tall stems that are over 10 times sweeter than white sugar but without the calories! Small white flowers bloom in late summer; harvest the leaves just before this blooming period to capture its peak performance. Leaves are best when dried and crushed into a fine powder; use as a sugar substitute. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 24-36"
Tarragon - French
Artemisia (Perennial)
An upright grower with branched stems of small, smooth mint-anise flavoured leaves. A favourite seasoning when cooking fish, omelets, poultry and seafood. Use fresh or dried leaves in salads, vinegars, cheeses, sauces, salad dressings, soups and rice dishes. Pinch off leaves and stems as needed throughout its growing season; remove old stems and trim to shape. Mature plants are large and bushy. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 6-12"
Thyme - Garden
Thymus (Perennial)
Dark green/grey leaves that are a great source of vitamin C! Pale pink flowers bloom on its tips in the summer. Traditionally used to season fish, poultry, soups and vegetables dishes; chopped fresh leaves are a great addition to cottage or cream cheeses, salad dressings, sauces, eggs, meats and stuffings. Harvest leaves and stems to keep bushy. To dry, cut stems just before flowers begin to open and hang in small bunches. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 8"
Thyme - Lemon
Thymus (Perennial)
A low growing groundcover with extremely fragrant lemon-scented yellow-green leaves; small pink/purple flowers bloom in summer. Leaves can be used fresh or harvested and dried for later use. Use leaves to make teas, add to salads and clear broths just before serving, and to season vegetables, butters and cream cheeses. Lemon Thyme is a great addition to potpourri mixtures. Remove flowers to encourage new foliage production. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 7-9"
Thyme - Silver
Thymus (Tender Perennial)
A low growing groundcover with silver-green leaves that is a great addition to rock and herb gardens alike! Small white flowers appear in summer. Traditionally used in clam chowders, Silver Thyme is also wonderful when used to make teas, season fish, and added to barbeque sauces, carrots and onions. Harvest leaves and stems to keep bushy. To dry, cut stems just before flowers begin to open and hang in small bunches. Grow in containers or in the garden.




Sun to Part Shade
Height: 6-12"
Vietnamese Coriander
Persicaria (Annual)
A low growing and spreading tropical with small light-green leaves. Traditionally used in Vietnamese cooking; snip leaves and stems as needed to add to soups, stir fries and curry dishes. Can be used as a substitute for Cilantro or even Mint! Trim to keep plant full and bushy. Grow in containers or in the garden.




-open/close- -open/close-Growing Herbs Indoors

Light:

Herbs require a Full to Partial Sun location. When growing herbs indoors, place them in a sunny window where they will receive a minimum of 3 hours of direct sun every day. Try to give your herbs as much light as possible during the winter months, when the days become short and overcast.

Watering:

Allow herbs to dry slightly then water thoroughly. Never let the pots sit in water and avoid allowing them to dry completely. During the summer when days are long and hot, you may need to water pots and planters more frequently.

Fertilizer:

There are many different types of fertilizer for herbs. Use an all-purpose water-soluble fertilizer once a month for indoor herbs. Fish emulsion fertilizer is another alternative for feeding your herbs, just following the directions on the container.

Pruning:

Trim herbs to maintain nicely shaped plants, then use the cuttings in the kitchen or on the barbeque! This will allow your plant to put more energy towards creating more leaves that you can use for cooking, and keep it compact and bushy rather than growing too tall and floppy.

Repotting:

When repotting your herbs for indoors use a quality potting mix. Simply remove the plants from the pots, set it in the new pot and fill the remaining area with soil. For individual plants choose a pot that is no more than one size larger then the current pot size, as planting into an oversized pot indoors could lead to root rot. Mixed pots are also great indoors: choose 3 or 4 of your favourite herbs for a shallow or bowl-shaped pot which measures about 10” in diameter.

Herb Tips:

It is best to start with fresh herb when planting indoors, as most herbs do not adjust well to moving indoors after spending a summer outside. During the winter you may find your herbs grow well for a number of weeks but then deteriorate; this is often due to the short days and overall lack of light. For best results, plan on having a rotation of herbs through the winter months, replacing every couple of months as needed.

-open/close- -open/close-Uses for Herbs

Fresh herbs have many uses! Not only do they look great but are fantastic for cooking, making teas, throwing in a salad and using on the barbeque.

Culinary Herbs - basil, bay laurel, chervil, chives, coriander/cilantro, dill, fennel, garlic, lemongrass, lovage, marjoram, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, savory, tarragon, thyme, lemon verbena

Tea Herbs - catnip, chamomile, lemon balm, lemongrass, mint, rosemary, stevia, lemon verbena

Salad Herbs - basilo, chervil, chives, coriander/cilantro, dill, french sorrel, garlic, lovage, mint, oregano, parsley, rosemary, savory, tarragon

BBQ Herbs - basil, chives, garlic, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, tarragon, thyme

-open/close- -open/close-Drying Herbs

Air drying herbs is easy and inexpensive. To preserve the best flavour, allow them to dry naturally or use a food dehydrator. Cut a few branches of your favorite herbs, shake to remove unwanted dirt or insects, then hang upside down in a warm airy room for a few weeks until all the moisture is gone and the leaves are crispy. Once your herbs are fully dried, label and store them in air tight containers and place in a cool, dry location away from sunlight. Store whole and crush them as you need them to preserve the flavour. Remember: 1 tsp crushed dried leaves = approx. 1 tbsp of fresh herbs!

-open/close- -open/close-Attracting Hummingbirds & Butterflies with Herbs


Butterflies are attracted by scent, and some flowers send out a more pleasing perfume than others. Hummingbirds are attracted visually, and especially like certain shades of red.  Many red coloured flowers are good sources of nectar.

Butterflies and Hummingbirds may appear as soon as your flowers open, or it may take them a while to find your garden.  If you don't see them there's no need to worry, simply enjoy the beautiful flowers in the meantime!

A majority of the plants that attract Butterflies and Hummingbirds prefer full sun for most of the day, so it is best to choose a full sun location for your garden. If your location is partial shade, afternoon sun would be preferred over morning sun. Shade created from a tree is suitable, as long as there is more sun than shade.

Attracting Hummingbirds and Butterflies with herbs is easy, inexpensive and yummy! As well as your perennials and annuals, the bright colours, textures, and scents of herbs are very effective attractants. Herbs are a great source of nutrition for your visiting friends, and can be started by seed or purchased as mature plants. Click here to see more suggestions of perennials or annuals that attract these beautiful creatures.

Hummingbirds are attracted to some herb flowers, such as Sage and Hyssop. While Butterflies are also attracted to herb flowers, they are moreso drawn to the sweet scents of certain herbs to lay their eggs and then eat as caterpillars. Providing host plants for butterfly eggs will ensure caterpillars in your garden, which will then turn into butterflies.


 Some suggestions that attract Hummingbird and Butterflies are:

Caraway
Chives
Dill
Fennel
Rosemary
Rue
Sage
Thyme
Garlic Chives
Hyssop
Mint
Parsley


Tips about Butterflies:

Butterflies are the adult stage of an insect, the caterpillar. You may not like caterpillars but you have to remember:



*no caterpillars = no butterflies*

 

If you use insecticides regularly in your garden you are probably killing off the beautiful butterflies you are trying to attract.  You can plan for caterpillars being in your garden by planting a food source for them.  This is fun to do with kids so they can watch for caterpillars and learn the process of how they change into butterflies.


Veggies!

What better satisfaction then to grow, pick and eat your own vegetables fresh from your garden!  At Belgian we grow over 40,000 vegetable plants each year, a collection of over 100 varieties! In the greenhouse, vegetable seeding happens during the months of February through May. The best selection is typically during the month of May, depending on the size of plant and speed of germination, however specific varieties can sell out by Victoria Day weekend. We also carry a full seed selection from January through August, with select varieties of seed available the rest of the year. This includes many varieties of vegetables and herbs, including heirloom varieties and sprouts. Seed potatoes and onions bulbs are available in March and April. Vegetables plants are healthy, delicious and FUN to GROW!

First choose your spot: a sunny location is ideal. Growing vegetables in raised beds or containers is great for starting out or adding to new sites. Ideally, preparing the soil and planning the plot is your next step, a great task to do on cold wintery days. Once the weather permits, start seeding direct or plant garden-ready plants in your garden. Remember to water, weed and check for pests! Then start enjoying your FRESH homegrown and tasty vegetables!




When to plant your vegetable plants depends on frost and the type of vegetable. It is generally safe to plant around the 20th of May, but we recommend you cover them if there is a call for frost after this time. Most vegetables CANNOT Tolerate Frost or cold temperatures below 6 C! Some vegetables grow best when directly seeded outside in slightly cooler weather, such as peas, beans, beets, radishes, lettuce and spinach. Other seeds like peppers, tomatoes, cucumbers and squash are best started indoors (and we have lots of these!) then planted outside when the weather is consistently warm. Consider succession planting with some vegetables such as beans, lettuce, beets and peas; planting these in stages will spread out your harvest time!

Garden with your kids! It’s fun and educational for everyone! Let them have a spot of their own in the garden and watch them eat what they grow! Choose vegetables that are easy to grow and good to snack on right from the garden: snap peas, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers and beans. Pumpkins and squash will fascinate kids as they watch them change right before their eyes, while beets and potatoes let them dig in the dirt to find some yummy treasures!

We also carry a selection of perennial fruits and vegetables. Rhubarb and asparagus transplants become available every spring; plant them once for a harvest that gets bigger and better with each passing year! Berry bushes are also available in the Perennial Centre. Imagine fresh strawberries, raspberries, grapes, blueberries, and blackberries right from your own backyard! Strawberries can also do very well in containers and are becoming very popular for patio pots and hanging baskets. Belgian does not carry fruit trees (such as apples and pears) but we do have a selection of citrus trees (lemons, limes, oranges, and kumquats) and fig trees in our tropical houseplant section.

Below is a list of vegetable plants that we grow each year. The best selection is during the second week of May. Many varieties sell out quickly and may be gone by Victoria Day weekend!

Beans (3 varieties) Corn Pumpkin (2 varieties)
Beets Cucumber (3 varieties) Spinach
Broccoli Eggplant Squash (6 varieties)
Brussel Sprouts Kale Swiss Chard
Cabbage (3 varieties) Kohlrabi Tomato (19 varieties)
Carrots Lettuce (5 varieties) Tomato -Burpee (10 varieties)
Cauliflower Muskmelon Tomato -Heirloom (12 varieties)
Celery Peas (2 varieties) Watermelon (2 varieties)
Collards Pepper (13 varieties) Zucchini


* This is a reference listing only. We do carry most of the varieties listed, though some sell out quickly due to demand. Please come and visit us to see what is available. We do not produce a catalogue or do mail orders.


-open/close--open/close-Removing Suckers from your Tomato Plants


Great links for more information about gardening with vegetables are:

http://www.burpee.com/vegetables/
http://www.almanac.com/content/vegetable-garden-planner