Are you looking to savour the flavours of your garden herbs all year round? Drying and storing freshly picked herbs is an easy way to preserve their goodness for later use.

Not only does it ensure you have a stash of flavourful herbs at your fingertips, but it also adds a delightful aroma to your home. Let’s dive into the simple steps to dry and store your garden herbs, along with tips on when to pick them for the best flavour.

Knowing when to pick

Timing is everything when it comes to harvesting herbs. To get the most flavour, it’s best to pick your herbs before they flower.

The morning is an ideal time to harvest because the aromatic oils in the herbs are at their peak concentration. Simply snip off the stems with sharp scissors or pruning shears, leaving some leaves behind to encourage new growth.

how to dry herbs and knowing when to pick them from your garden


Drying your herbs

Drying herbs is a straightforward process that requires minimal effort. Here’s how to do it:

Gather your herbs: Start by gathering your freshly picked herbs. Choose herbs that are free from blemishes and dirt.

Prep the herbs: Rinse the herbs gently under cold water to remove any dirt or debris. Shake off excess water and pat them dry with a clean towel.

Air dry: There are several methods for drying herbs, but air drying is one of the easiest. Bundle the herbs together with string or rubber bands and hang them upside down in a warm, dry place away from direct sunlight. Good locations include a pantry, kitchen, or well-ventilated room.

Check for dryness: After a week or two, your herbs should be dry and brittle to the touch. You can also tell they’re ready when the leaves crumble easily. If the stems are still flexible, they need more time to dry.

Remove Leaves: Once your herbs are dry, strip the leaves from the stems. Discard any woody stems and store only the leaves for the best flavour.

Drying herbs


Storing your herbs

Proper storage is essential for preserving the flavor and aroma of your dried herbs. Follow these steps to store them correctly:

Choose storage containers: Opt for airtight containers such as glass jars or resealable bags to keep your herbs fresh. Make sure the containers are clean and dry before adding the herbs.

Label your herbs: To avoid confusion, label each container with the name of the herb and the date it was dried.

Store in a cool, dark place: Herbs should be stored in a cool, dark place away from heat and sunlight. A pantry or cupboard works well for this purpose.

Use within a year: Dried herbs will retain their flavour for up to a year if stored properly. After that, they may start to lose their potency, so it’s best to use them within that time frame.


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