If you’re not an experienced herb gardener, you’ll soon realize that there are lots of different types of herbs. They can be placed into different classifications depending on their use as shown below:
Culinary or seasoning herbs are what comes to mind in most people when they hear the word ‘herbs’. These plants are used primarily for cooking. They are easily related to our taste buds and can be commonly be thought of as the herbs with useful flavors. They also decorate our food when used as a garnish.
Among the most common culinary herbs are chives, thyme, basil, sage, savory, marjoram, and parsley.
As the name suggests, these herbs give off a powerful fragrance. These herbs and their flowers and leaves are used for their aromatic aroma rather than their taste.
These herbs are generally dried and used to make potpurri allowing the fragrance to release into the air for a long period of time. Examples of herbs used for this purpose include lavender and lemon verbena.
Other herbs which have aromatic oils in them are used to make perfume or toilet water. Examples are herbs such as lovage, mint, and rosemary.
Ornamental herbs are used for their beauty in the same way flowers are. These herbs have brightly colored flowers and leaves. Some examples are valerian crimson flowers and the blue flowers of chicory.
Herbs are additionally categorized by their life span. Annuals must be grown per annum. Examples include basil and cilantro.
Perennial herbs come back year after year. Examples include sage and winter savory. Note that if they are grown indoors, they should be repotted yearly.
Biennial herbs have a 2-year life span. The first year, they form leaves. throughout the second year, they flower and form seeds. Examples include parsley, angelica, or caraway.
There are lots of different types of herbs and many fall into multiple categories and have similar uses. So decide early which one you plan to grow.