You are on page 1of 27

Primary Herb Garden Activity

Herb Activity Sheet
Making a lavender bag
You will need

A fine net of about 20x20cm

A tea plate

A pair of scissors

A round-ended needle with a large eye

About 30cm of embroidery thread or similar

A short length of narrow silk ribbon.

What you do

1. Strip the dried heads

To prepare the lavender

Pick about 20 stems of lavender on a warm
sunny day. The middle of the morning is
best, when the sun has dried the dew.

Arrange them carefully on a wire tray to dry.
A cake cooling tray is ideal. Make sure the
flower heads and stems do not touch each

Place on a sheet of paper in an airing
cupboard. Leave for about 1 week.

To make the bag
Follow these steps and the pictures on the right.
1. Strip the dried heads carefully from the
2. Cut a circle of net using a tea plate as a

2. Cut a circle of net

3. Cut 30cm of embroidery silk or similar.
Thread a round-headed needle with a large
eye. Use a running stitch. Sew the thread
approximately 2 cm from the edge of the net
circle. As you sew, ease the thread carefully.
Take care not to pull too hard. It may tear the

3. Sew around the edge

4. Draw up the thread to form a bag, leaving a
gap at the neck. Put 2 teaspoons of lavender
heads inside the bag. Pull the thread tight and
knot together with a reef knot. (Click here to
find out how to tie a reef knot).
5. Tie top with ribbon, using bow.
Make as many bags as you have lavender heads for.


Place in your clothes drawers and cupboards
to make your clothes smell nice and to keep
moths away

Or, if you think you might like a lavender
bath, hang the bag over the hot tap while you
run the water.

4. Draw up thread to make bag

5. Tie end with ribbon

Herb Activity Sheet
Cooking with herbs

stews and sauces make all the difference! Why not try the following? Bouquet Garni Use either fresh or dried herbs.  Mix into softened butter to make a savoury spread. salt and pepper to serve with fish or grilled meat.  Include it in a green salad.  Or add some lemon juice.Herbs add interest and flavour to cooking.  Sprinkle it over cooked carrots. Fines Herbes This is a mixture of equal quantities of chopped fresh parsley. just use some. chives and tarragon. parsley. haricot or butter beans. Herb Butter Chop herbs such as sage. Preparing fines herbes. thyme. Parsley. A few leaves of herbs added to soups. chervil. thyme and mint. chives and tarragon shown here If you don't have all the above herbs. marjoram and a bay leaf and drop into your soup stew or sauce while cooking. Herb Vinegar Sage butter .  Add it when making an omlette or scrambled eggs.   Tie together the stalks of a fresh sprig of parsley. Bouquet garni Or tie the dried herbs into piece of muslin so that they can be easily removed before serving.

dry leaves. clean. Fill a screw-top jar with freshly gathered. Mint tea Lavender and lemon biscuit You can make a tasty biscuit containing lavender.  Leave for about 3-4 minutes (when it is cool).  Strain and rebottle in a clean jar. mint or a Lavender flower head in a cup. preferably a vinegar bottle for easy pouring.  Fill to the top with good malt vinegar.  Pour on boiling water and cover with a saucer. then strain it before drinking it. young. Replace the lid and leave for about three weeks. Click here to find a recipe that you can try with the help of an adult. sage. Herb Tea  Put a few leaves of fresh thyme.  You will need to shake the jar regularly during this time to mix everything together. Find out how to make tarragon vinegar. lemon balm. Lavender and lemon biscuit Drying and preserving herbs Keen young chefs .

or strip the separate flower heads from the stems. Or if the air is dry and out of direct sunlight. Remember to turn them daily to allow the air to dry them properly. 2. Herbs used in cooking Leaves of herbs for cooking can be arranged Mixed bunch of herbs prepared for hanging to dry . 2. This gives you the strongest perfume because it contains the highest concentration of oils. smell and flavour from the herbs. Other herbs may be dried a similar way. after the dew has gone. preferably in the morning. leave them where you hung them to let their perfumes scent a room. Find an airy. This is important as the sun will bleach the colour. Leave until they are brittle enough to break easily between your fingers . Tie them together at their stems and hung upside down to dry. Spread the complete flower head on a tray to dry either in an airing cupboard or under the bed. Bunches of herbs can be picked on a dry day. 3. Various herbs drying on rack Use them in pot-pourris or small bags made from cotton material.about one week. Or you can spread them on a tray or shelf between sheets of newspaper or muslin. but before the sun gets too hot. You can use either the complete flower heads. See Activity sheets 5 and 6.Try these activities out for yourselves! Drying lavender 1. An airing cupboard is ideal. 1. Turn the flowers often to make sure that all parts of properly dry. dust-free place out of the sun. Pick the Lavender heads when they are closed and the top florets have just burst.

3. It takes roots longer to dry (often several weeks). Liquorice. (pictures) Freezing herbs You can store dried herbs in an airtight jar.separately on a drying rack and turned regularly. Be sure to label the jar so you don't forget forget what is in there. 2. seal and put in the freezer compartment of a refrigerator. Find out  How people dried herbs in the past  How dried herbs are used now Mixed herbs that had been put in a small plastic bag before being put in the freezer. But leave the skin on the root of others such as angelica and dandelion. place leaves of borage flowers in water in ice cube trays and freeze them. . Or. horseradish and marshmallow. Other activities Now that you can dry herbs. 1. Cut the roots into 1cm slices and dry in the same way as the flowers. Or To dry them more quickly. Although frozen herbs lose some of their flavour. Pack them in an airtight tin or a dark glass jar. Look at other Activity sheets to find uses for dried herbs. Drying roots Roots of some herbs can also be dried. you can make dried herbs all year round. They are now crumbly and ready to use. Place some mixed herb leaves inside a small plastic bag. need to have their skin peeled first. place in a warm oven until the slices are light and brittle. they are ready to use when required.

which smells good and looks pretty. flowers. jars and small baskets. Collect a mixture of different ingredients  Use dried leaves.  Some containers have holes in the sides to let the fragrances out. In Medieval times people made a moist pot-pourri from fresh herbs. What is a pot-pourri? A pot-pourri is a mixture of dried herbs. The word 'pot-pourri' comes from the French meaning 'rotten pot'.  Choose ingredients that have interesting Selection of drying plants and leaves to use in a pot-pourri . Making a pot-pourri First collect some containers  You can use bowls. It is an ornament and air-freshener all in one.  Some have lids to keep the scent in when the room is not being used. bark. It is usually placed around the house in attractive jars or bowls. Today we usually use dried herbs. Or you could decorate some yoghurt pots or small cardboard boxes. seeds or berries. How many different dried herbs are sold in your local supermarket  Where herbs come from  What other uses for herbs are Dried fennel in a paper bag.

primrose. marjoram. Click to see note on drying flowers. shapes. whole nutmegs. dried hawthorn berries. A completed pot-pourri mixture in a bowl Place in containers  Place it carefully in your container. violet. pansy.  Check your results. lime. nasturtium. or lemon peel. heather.dried orange.cinnamon sticks.  Arrange some of the interesting ingredients by shape and colour. when you run your fingers through them!  Choose herbs and spices that smell nice together. Do you need to add more of anything?  Go to next step when the mixture is just as you want it. cardamom pods.lavender. Some ideas for pot-pourri ingredients  Leaves . rosemary.  Fruits . sage. Stir them together  Mix in a bowl using your hands. pot marigold (calendula) sunflower petals. polyanthus. lilac. rose.  Cover it with clingfilm to stop it spilling if you are carrying it home from school. lemon balm.  Spices . textures or even sounds. History The Elizabethans liked pot-pourris to ward of bad A selection of bowls and baskets you could use for your pot-pourri .  Flowers . thyme.

This warmth made the beautiful perfumes smell stronger.smells and germs. which also repelled insects. mice and rats. New fresh herbs were then laid down. They strewed (covered) the floors of their homes with different sweet smelling herbs. Each morning the strewing herbs on the floors were swept up and used to light the fire. Oregano was part of the mixture because it kept away ants. They were also thought to protect people form disease . They usually used the strewing method. especially in the kitchen area. Step 1 . Spices like cinnamon sticks. cardamom pods and whole nutmeg may be used in pot-pourris Making a tussie mussie A tussie mussie was a posy of flowers and herbs carried by people in Medieval and Tudor times to hide bad smells. The Romans used scented herbs in their homes.particularly the plague. They also had under floor heating. Check out our History page to learn more.

Before you start You will need  A variety of herbs and flowers  Some fine string  A length of ribbon Step 1 Start with a sweet smelling flower of your choice.Step 2 Tussie mussies both look nice and smell nice. Step 2 Add round it some lavender. Step 4 What about adding some other herb? Try lemon Step 3 . Step 3 Now add some rosemary.

You can use anything safe which smells and looks nice.balm or mint perhaps. Herbs you can use Of course. Here is a list of possible herbs to use  Rosemary Step 4  Lavender  Mint  Lemon Balm  Sage  Tansy  Yarrow  Thyme  Honeysuckle  Clove Carnations  Meadowsweet  Violets  Lily Of The Valley  Scented Geranium Leaves  Roses  Marigold Flowers Step 5 The completed tussie mussie . Step 5 Tie with some fine string and finish with a piece of ribbon. you don't have to use the herbs and flowers just described.

pomanders were worn in bejewelled gold and silver containers. From medieval times right up to the 18th century. Use the tape to divide the surface of the the orange into four equal parts Henry V carried a musk (a pungent. In the court of Queen Elizabeth I. Fennel  Cotton Lavender  Hyssop  Lemon Verbena  Chamomile  Bay Leaves Origins Pomanders are perfumed balls usually made from an orange. sweet perfume) ball of gold. worn or hung in rooms against "foule. Today they can be bought in the form of perforated pottery balls to hang in wardrobes or bedrooms. . Step 2. they were carried. stinkying aire".

Step 3 Pierce the skin of the orange with the cocktail stick and set in the cloves. Step 4 Mix the orris root powder and ground cinnamon and put in a paper bag or on a sheet of greaseproof paper. Step 2 Use the tape to divide the surface of the the orange into four equal parts and pin the tape in place. you will need  1 medium or large orange  About 1 oz (25g) cloves  1 teaspoon of orris root powder  1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon  A length of ribbon and a similar length of tape  A few pins and a cocktail stick  A paper bag or tissue paper Step 3. Roll the orange in these spices. Step 5 Step 4. Pierce the skin of the orange with the cocktail stick and set in the cloves Orris root is available from Health Food shops Method Step 1 Gently knead the orange in your hands to soften the skin. Later. Mix the orris root powder and ground cinnamon and roll the orange in these spices.Ingredients Before you start. either in a pattern or to completely cover the orange. . the ribbon will go where you have put the tape.

remove the tape and decorate with the ribbon and with a bow. warm place.Wrap the orange in tissue paper or leave in the paper bag and store for a few days in a dry. Finally. Seeds used basil. Leave until the skin under the tape is dry. marjoram. Growing Herbs From Seeds Seeds can be grown directly into the ground. Step 6 When dry. Using a rounded-end spatula. Materials  Seed compost (preferably peat-free compost)  Seed trays or pots of about 8cm diameter) What you do 1. sprinkle a few seeds thinly over the compost Seed pots . garlic chives and rocket. decorate with the ribbon and with a bow. but they can also be started in trays and pots using compost. An airing cupboard is ideal. Almost fill the tray/pots with damp compost 2.

How can you tell when the seeds are big enough? Growing seeds in different conditions All green plants need  Light  Water  Soil  Heat Seed Trays planted and labeled Can you think of an experiment to test this? Clue: suppose you excluded one of the things mentioned above. ("Prick out" means lift out the seedlings carefully and plant them in another. pot or tray where they will have more room to grow.yes Seed trays and pots planted .3. light place (on a window sill or in a conservatory) and wait for the seedlings to appear. Cover with a thin layer of compost 4. When the seedlings are big enough.) You can prick them out into your garden. Then Test Condition 1 might be  Light . prick out the young seedlings. Do you know why you need to do this? Seed trays 8. perhaps bigger. Water sparingly 5. Place in a warm. Turn the pots/trays regularly when the seedlings appear. depending on conditions  Water . Water regularly to keep the compost damp 7. This should take between 2 -5 days.

using your observations. So you like writing stories and poems? Rosie and Nick like writing stories and poems . Include your table of results and any drawings you make. Well then.yes Think about  How long your test will last  How you will make sure it is a fair test  What you notice when the seeds begin to germinate  When you prick out the young plants. what you notice about the seedling  Counting how many seedlings germinated (grew into plants)  Estimating the number of seeds that did not germinate (the seed packet might give you a clue how to do this)  Writing down your observations  Using a table to record your findings  Doing some reading to find out why a plant needs leaves and roots  Writing a report on what you did.I expect you do too. Soil .yes  Heat . you'd probably like to use your imagination and make up a short story. Seeds germinated between 2 to 5 days . or a poem. about a herb.

Another idea is to write a mystery story. You will see 'dracunculus' means little dragon. another idea may come to you if you look at the Fact Sheet on Lavender. You may need to do some research for your story to find out what the difference between 'jam' and 'conserve' is. or the History of Herbs web page. Send it to Stories The Herb Society What about a story telling how Queen Elizabeth I liked lavender conserve. It may be one about how the herb got its name. Or.Below are a few suggestions to help you get started. Go to the History of Herbs page and use some ideas from there. The Latin name for tarragon is Artemisia dracunculus This would make a good story. . Now there's an interesting story to write. if you are studying The Tudors at school. Look at the Fact Sheet on Tarragon. as it was called then). It might be that the mystery can only be solved by working out the names of herbs. you could write a romantic story about a kitchen maid and a stable lad who got married… I'm sure you will have lots of good ideas yourselves. you will learn that herbs were used a lot in Tudor times. you might like to write a story about how Zeus changed the birds into Lavender. Send us your story and we can put it on the website for other children to read. There you will find a lot of ideas for short stories. Or. But you will have your own ideas. For example. For example. 'Dracunculus' means little dragon. How did it get that name? Use your imagination and write the story. I'm sure. Its Latin name is Artemisia dracunculus. Or a story about Elizabeth I and lavender jam ('conserve'.

You can easily grow herbs in containers. Choosing your container Almost any container is suitable provided it has:  drainage holes  a wide base to prevent it falling over  it is big enough and suitable for the plant Some herbs can be grown in hanging baskets. However. The herb must also be picked regularly to stop it straggling.Sulgrave Manor Banbury OX17 2SD Or go to our contact page to find out how to email us but do ask an adult if you can email it to Rosie or Nick. As herbs grow quickly they can become root-bound and dry out. Or write a detective story about herbs. but you must prepare the basket well and choose the site to hang it carefully. they do require a little more care and attention. You do not need a spare plot of ground at your school to make a herb garden. Preparing the container Place gravel or broken pots in the bottom of the container to prevents the holes from getting blocked with soil . Hanging baskets do not like full sun all day or high winds.

2 will also do. It also holds moisture well. the more added nutrients. Use different compost for hanging baskets because John Innes composts are too heavy for them Fill the container to three-quarters full with compost See below for different kinds of compost. Check the drainage holes.  Water the plant well Here is a finished pot with rosemary. it absorbs water quickly. Filling and planting  Wash any pots that have been used before. leaving a 2-3cm rim.  Gently firm the soil around the plant. Be careful not to disturb the roots. It is a good idea to put gravel or wood chips on the top of the compost to hold in the moisture and stop weeds. If it does dry out. The higher the number.  Half fill with compost and arrange the herbs carefully. it will tap out when turned upside down.  Place plant in the centre of the container and add more compost around it until the plant is able to stand upright without support. adding more compost. 3 because it is soil based and contains longerlasting nutrients. Are there enough? Are they unclogged?  Place gravel or broken pots in the bottom. This prevents the holes from filling with soil  Fill the container three-quarters full with compost  Remove the herb very carefully from its pot. Hanging baskets need to be lined with sphagnum moss and a layer of black plastic with drainage holes cut in it.Which compost? The best compost for growing herbs is John Innes No. Put 3-4 trailing herbs at the edge Arrange your pots into nice . This means less feeding. take care not to overwater! John Innes No. However. If the soil is moist.

do not let the pots dry out  Move out of the noonday sun  Dead-head any flowers (or pick them for drying)  Feed weekly. preferably with an organic liquid feed (seaweed)  Cut off any pest damaged leaves You can put a few different herbs in a big pot. Use the Fact sheets on this web site to help identify each herb. tarragon and flat-leaf parsley.  Allow it to drain before hanging it in a suitable position that is not too high .  Fill to the top with compost and water well. after removing the top few centimetres of soil  Bring indoors (or put in a cold greenhouse) any tender plants before the first frost  Do not water so often Winter  It is best to put all container-herbs in doors. Then see how many herbs you can name.and 1-2 upright ones in the centre. Autumn  Cut back perennial herbs (these grow year after year)  Weed and feed the containers. bay. . Take care not put in too many as they spread and grow quickly. This one has rosemary. or at least cover them to protect them for severe weather Rosie asks. "Can you identify the herbs in the pot below? Click on the picture to enlarge must be watered frequently in dry hot weather sometimes twice a day! groupings Caring for your container herbs Summer  Water regularly .

. We are running out of supplies of peat because of over use. You can usually tell if their roots are spreading from the bottom of the container.  Needs frequent watering and feeding.  Use the next size up  Carefully remove the herb from the old pot  Remove dead leaves and prune the straggly shoots and cut the growing tip of perennial herbs . light. clean and easy to use.this encourages bushy growth  Replant after preparing the container as above  Water well  Begin feeding when new shoots appear Different types of compost Multipurpose Potting compost  Widely available. Peat-free composts  Coir . Kyle Cathie Ltd. Jekka's Complete herb book.made form the fibers found between the husk and the outer shell of a coconuts  Composted tree bark Further reading: Jekka McVicar. 1994 Bag of compost Peat-based composts should be avoided. Minimum watering only Spring some herbs may need re-potting.  Do not let it dry out as it does not take up water well.

OEMRYRAS 8. AJRMAOARM 7. RIRDCENOA 3. Anagrams Sort the letters to find the names of the herbs 1. LDNIADNOE Solution to anagrams. C PAE L ME E A N 6.Herb puzzles Try your hand at the following puzzles. YPLRASE 5 . ETTLNEE 9. You will find it easier if you print the page first. EGSA 4. . EYMTH 2. NLFENE 10.


curries and chutney (8) 9 Used in curries and is one of the oldest herbs. biscuits.(9) 11 Used to flavour sweets and toothpaste (10) 12 Mainly used to flavour ice cream and chocolate (7) Down 1 A leaf from this tree goes into a bouquet garni (3) 2 Has the same name a a medieval staff with a metal spike (4) 3 Used in sauce to go with roast lamb (4) 4 Julius Caesar found the natives of Britain stained with this (4) 5 A yellow flower with four petals.LEMON LAVENDER LEMON BALM LOVAGE RUE SAGE THYME YARROW Solution to word search. Crossword Across 1 Melissa or lemon ____ (4) 6 This spice comes in quills from the inner bark of a tree and is used to flavour cakes. They are also found in tartare sauce (6) 10 Shakespeare called this the herb o'grace o'Sundays (3) . Its seeds were found in Egyptian tombs. The roots and leaves were eaten (7) 8 Our feline friends love this 3 (7) 9 Small unopened buds usually pickled in vinegar . used in herbal medicine and for treatment of stomach upsets (9) 7 This little known herb used to be grown in kitchen gardens.

SAGE 4. 2006 .Solution to crossword Return to the schools home page Copyright of The Herb Society. ELECAMPANE 6. CORIDANDER 3. ROSEMARY 8. DANDELION . PARSLEY 5.2008 Solutions Anagrams 1. THYME 2. MARJORAM 7. NETTLE 9. FENEL 10.

Return to Puzzle page Word Search Return to Puzzle page Crossword .

2006 .2008 .Return to Puzzle page Copyright of The Herb Society.