Herbs

Caring for tarragon: How to water, cut and overwinter it

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Chives, parsley and thyme should not be missing in the kitchen. Not to forget tarragon. This is totally easy to care for and is great to grow yourself.

© aneta_gu - Fotolia.com Spicy tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus) is an asset for every kitchen. The maintenance is fortunately not difficult and the success is almost certain, if you do not make easily avoidable mistakes. Read our care tips so that the tarragon develops splendidly in your garden.

Soil and location for tarragon

Tarragon thrives best in full sun. Penumbra is tolerated, but you can expect somewhat weaker growth. The soil at the site should be well loosened and have a relatively high humus content as well as a soil pH of 6 to 7.

If you have compost, you can work it generously into your herb bed before planting. Make sure that there is a generous distance between the subshrubs. Tarragon grows quite extensively and is not competitive. Use a container that is as large as possible if the tarragon should not grow in the bed, but rather in the bucket. Reading tip: Planting tarragon: tips on location, plant purchase and planting.

Water tarragon regularly

Keep your tarragon constantly moist and do not water the plant itself, but the surrounding soil. If you want to save yourself watering work, you can embed your tarragon in a layer of gravel. As a result, the water in the soil evaporates more slowly at high temperatures. An additional advantage: weeds have a hard time getting through the gravel layer.

Cut and harvest tarragon

The tarragon can be harvested from spring until late autumn. The leaves taste best fresh from the garden. Therefore, you should always cut off only a few shoots as needed. If you want to stock up for winter, the best time to go is from June to mid-July. At this time, the leaves contain a lot of essential oil.

A cut back is usually not necessary. However, the shoots can grow too dense if you do not harvest for a long time. In this case, you just have to remove the weakest shoots to align the crop.

Winter tarragon

Shorten your tarragon to just above ground level before the first freezing temperatures are expected in late autumn or early winter. Then cover the plants with a thick layer of foliage and place a few softwood branches on them. You can also bring tarragon cultivated in a bucket to a sheltered winter home. Always make sure that the roots of the plants do not dry out completely in winter.

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