I was in a supermarket car park once and noticed that yards from where I parked my car there was a rosemary bush. I am sure that very few people (if any) knew it was there. The plant was about 3ft tall and equally as wide – completely abundant – just sitting there, unsung and unloved churning out herbs, and crying out to be picked. Inside the supermarket, I found a herb retail display in the vegetable aisle and right there between the marjoram and sage was, yes you’ve guessed it – rosemary! €2 for a few miserly sprigs imported from Israel. Yep, sometimes the food chain hits you right between the eyes with a display of utter stupidity. I thought about standing there for a while so that I could tell anyone who came to buy herbs about the free rosemary out in the carpark. But I would probably have been carted away by the men in white coats.
Growing your own herbs is a great starting point on the GIY journey. Herbs tick so many boxes: they will save you lots of money from day one and since you simply pick as much as you need, there’s no waste (in our house, little cartons of herbs always ended up rotting in the back of the fridge, judging me silently each day as I went in for the milk). With homegrown herbs you get consistently high quality, fresh product, which can’t always be said about the shop-bought equivalent. Herbs are also generally easy to grow, relatively forgiving and low maintenance. You don’t need to have a garden to grow them since most of them will do perfectly fine in a pot or container on a windowsill. Best of all though, homegrown herbs will make your entire meal feel and taste homegrown, even if most of it isn’t.