O'Tooles Garden Centers
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O'Toole's Garden Center  

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Herb Edition

Vegetable Guide

Basil

Lovage

Catnip

Majoram

Cilantro

Mint

Chamomile

Oregano

Chives

Parsley

Dill

Rosemary

Fennel

Sage

Hyssop

Sorrel

Lavender

Thyme



Basil

 - Plant outside when soil is warm, usually 1 – 2 weeks after last average frost date (May 15th)
 - Start indoors 6 – 8 weeks before transplanting outside
 - Basil is very sensitive to cold air and soil temperatures
 - Unless soils are very nutrient depleted, do not fertilize – fertilizing tends to deplete taste
 - It’s recommended that you do 3 – 4 successive plantings at 3 week intervals
 - Harvest the leaves anytime.  Fresh, young leaves taste the best. Harvest in the morning for the best flavor
 - Plant with peppers and tomatoes for better production and taste
 - Freezing – Clean and dry leaves, placing them in a plastic bag.  Press out the air and freeze
 - Drying – Pinch off leaves at stem and then place in a shady, ventilated spot.  The leaves should dry in 3 – 4 days.  Store in an airtight container

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Catnip

 - Start seeds indoors 6 weeks before last average frost (May 15th)
 - Hardy perennial that blooms mid-summer

 - Dry leaves or use fresh leaves for tea
 - Dry leaves for cat toys

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Cilantro

 - Start seeds indoors 6 – 8 weeks before last average frost date (May 15th)
 - Transplant outside 2 weeks after last frost

 - Harvest leaves at any time
 - Use fresh leaves for best results – can be dried or frozen

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Chamomile

 - Start seeds indoors 8 – 10 weeks before the last average frost date (May 15th)
 - Use 3 – 4 seeds per cell.  Seeds are very small and should be scratched into the soil just below the surface
 - Harvest flowers when fully opened and dry on a screen covered in cheesecloth in a cool, dark, well-ventilated place

 - Herbal Tea – pour 8 ounces boiling water over 1 tablespoon of dried flowers.  Or, pour over 1 tablespoon fresh flowers and let steep for 2 minutes.  Great for easing indigestion and inducing sleep

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Chives

 - Plant indoors 6 weeks before the last average frost date
 - Harvest when foliage is at least 6” long and cut back to 2” above the ground.  Shearing once or twice a year keeps new and tender foliage available for use.
 - Drying is not recommended because it loses too much flavor.  Best when used fresh.  You can freeze on a cookie sheet and store in a jar in the freezer.
 - Plant chives next to other plants to keep insects off.  If planted around other desirable plants, can help keep rabbits out of the garden.

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Dill

 - Plant seeds directly in the soil in mid-May.  This herb doesn’t transplant well.
 - Conventional wisdom says dill enhances the growth of cabbage, onions and lettuce.
 - Harvest foliage anytime up until the plant flowers
 - Harvest seed 2 – 3 weeks after flowering begins.  Cut flower heads with stem attached and place in paper bag before seed becomes too mature and falls to the ground.  Store seeds in an airtight container.

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Fennel

 - Plant seeds indoors 4 – 6 weeks before frost to produce a bulb for fall harvest.  Easy to grow by seed for foliage production
 - Harvest the bulb after it begins to form
 - Attracts Lady Bugs!
 - Don’t plant near Bush Beans, Caraway, Tomatoes and Kohlrabi as fennel can damage their growth.  In the same way, cilantro planted near fennel can prevent fennel’s seed formation. 

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Hyssop

 - Plant seeds indoors 4 – 6 weeks before frost
 - Requires light to germinate. Sow on surface and press lightly into the soil.

 - Excellent for fresh or dried floral bouquets, potpourris and sachets.
 - Dry or fresh leaves are great for tea.  Tea can help with cold and fevers.
 - Attracts butterflies!

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Lavender

 - Plant 10 – 12 weeks before last average frost
 - Best results if sown on top of soil at 60 – 70 degrees.
 - Seeds will sprout in 3 – 4 weeks
 - Use in soaps, potpourri and sachets
 - Keeps unwanted insects and rabbits away.
 - Good, hardy drought tolerant perennial

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Lovage

 - Plant outside 2 – 3 weeks before average last frost date.  Plant inside 8 – 10 weeks before last spring frost.
 - Use like celery and it’s easier to grow
 - Needs large area to grow and is a hardy perennial
 - Fresh or dried leaves can be added to soups and stews.  But when cooking with lovage a little goes a long way.
 - Good companion plant to many vegetables including beans, cucumbers and parsley.  Lovage flowers attract beneficial insects

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Majoram

 - Plant indoors 6 – 8 weeks before last average frost.  Plant on top of soil or lightly pressed in soil
 - Plant outside after last frost.  Plant in clumps
 - Harvest leaves anytime and use fresh
 - Dry leaves then crush and store in an airtight container
 - Milder than oregano

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Mint

 - Seeds are easy to start and can be planted at anytime
 - Harvest leaves at anytime and can be dried for later use in cooking or for teas
 - Repels insects and rabbits
 - Can be invasive.  Plant in a pot then place the pot in the ground

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Oregano

  

- Start indoors 6 – 8 weeks before last average frost and plant outdoors 2 weeks after last frost.
 - Seeds need light to germinate.  Sow seeds by pressing into soil surface
 - Harvest when plant is at least 6” tall and cut stem
 - Use the leaves fresh, dried or frozen
 - Repels bugs and rabbits

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Parsley

 - Start seeds indoors 8 weeks before last average frost and plant outside 2 weeks after last frost – or when soil temperature reaches 50 degrees
 - Germination of seeds is unpredictable.  Soaking the seed for 24 hours will help speed up the germination
 - Re-plant every year. Although parsley is a biennial, the second year foliage is not as good tasting
 - Harvest the outside stalks whenever and as needed

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Rosemary

 - Start seeds indoors 8 – 10 weeks before last average frost date
 - Rosemary is very slow growing and is very slow to germinate
 - Harvest sprigs as needed.  Dry and then freeze for later use.

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Sage

 - Start seeds indoors 4 weeks before last average frost date
 - Seeds are easy to germinate
 - Harvest leaves when plant is at least 6”
 - Leaves can be used fresh.  If dried, keep in an airtight jar for later use
 - Planted among other plants, keeps unwanted insects away

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Sorrel

 - Start seeds indoors 4 – 6 weeks before last average frost date
 - Use like lettuce and spinach
 - Very high in vitamin C
 - Harvest outer leaves regularly even if you don’t need them. It will encourage new young, tender growth.  Leaves will freeze well for later use.  For salad greens, you may pick a few of the inside young tender leaves.
 - Hardy perennial that could become invasive if left unkempt or unused

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Thyme

 - Start seeds indoors 8 weeks before last average frost date
 -Sow 10 – 15 seeds per 4” pot and transplant outside as a group
 - Re-plant every 3 – 4 years as older plants become woody and less attractive
 - Harvest sprigs when you need them throughout the season
 - Leaves can be used fresh, frozen or dried

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1404 Quail Street, Lakewood, CO 80215
303-232-6868
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5201 S. Federal Blvd., Littleton, CO
303-347-8027
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9400 Wadsworth Parkway, Westminster, CO
303-423-8361