Herbal Roots

Herbs, herbs, glorious herbs!

image of oregano cutting in water

Oregano cutting with new roots

From luscious lavender to invigorating rosemary, herbs have been around since the beginning of time. Their uses are many, and can be preventative or restorative. I certainly have my favorites, like rosemary, oregano, thyme, parsley, sage… the list goes on. I cook and bake with them, and use them quite a bit with the chickens: in their coop, run, nesting boxes, and as part of their treats.

One of my ongoing projects is expanding my herb garden. One way I do this is to take cuttings from favorite herbs, stick them in water, and watch new roots grow. It’s that easy! I’ve had great success with rosemary and oregano, and plan to try it with a few other herbs.

The oregano you see in the photo was actually trampled by the chickens getting into the herb garden when I wasn’t looking (turn your back for a second… geesh!) So, I brought the larger pieces inside and put them in water. The smaller pieces went in the coop and nesting boxes. The main plant is still alive, so I guess it’s a win-win. 

Come spring, the new oregano will find a permanent home back in the herb garden—oregano overwinters well in this area. The rosemary will mostly be confined to pots, so I can take it inside for the winter.

Having herbs on my kitchen windowsill brings me extra joy in the dead of winter. Some of my indoor rosemary plants have bloomed in winter, even while still in the water! Ah, herbs, you bring me such happiness!

Chores Before Snow

As today’s forecast threatens snow, I’m thrown into a near panic thinking about all the little coop and yard chores I have yet to finish. I must be a bad chicken mommy for not having attended to these chores already. But, life is what happens while you’re busy making plans.

I’ve been planning what to do with the wonderful crop of rose hips I just harvested. And what to do with the enormous amount of mint I have collected? Most likely the mint, and perhaps the rose hips, will be dried and put up for winter to be used in teas on cold winter mornings. The dried mint will come in handy in the coop bedding throughout the winter. As long as winters are up here, it’s a good thing I have so much.


I’m determined to make something yummy with with at least some of the rose hips. Eating them raw I’ve discovered they are very sweet and tasty–larger and sweeter than the wild ones I sample while hiking local trails.

But the processing of these bountiful goodies will have to be put off for today. The threat of snow has launched me into the “get ‘er done” mode. My coop could actually survive winter just fine in its current state. However, there are a few niceties that I’d like to do to help make winter more enjoyable for the girls and for me!

So, enough with the small talk. I’m off to suit up and head out into the brisk morning air and accomplish all sorts of wonderful chores. Have a great day!