The 3 Herbs Even Michigan Winters Can’t Kill

Herbs 1

It’s hard to believe Mr. P and I moved to Michigan nearly 3 years ago. To this day, when I tell people I live in Michigan, they offer up their sympathy. Yes, the winters are brutal. Yes, there are times of the year that I would do quite literally anything to sport a single layer of clothing and catch some vitamin D straight from the sun. But the summers? Oh gosh, the summers. They’re…the best. For 12 weeks of every year, I feel like I’m on vacation every single day.

But, anyway, we’re talking about herbs. These 3 plants were brought to Michigan with us when we made the move from Ohio. If you follow along, you probably know that I kill basil. Always. There’s just no happy ending for basil when it comes to me and gardening, so I grow that stuff indoors. Under artificial lights. And I get asked if it’s really basil. Ha! It’s really basil, folks.

So after 3 successful years following transplantation and 3 long and bitter Michigan winters, I declare these 3 herbs invincible. If my lack of nurture and the extremes of mother nature can’t kill off these guys, they’re clearly worth talking about. Besides, fresh herbs in cooking are simply the best. Furthermore, do you know how domestic it makes me feel to jog out my front door, clip a few fresh herbs, and resume my dinner-making? Martha-freaking-Stewart, right here!

Not only are my transplanted herbs alive, but they’re thriving. They’re situated on the side of my house and right outside my garage door, actually. They get sun and shade…a good 50-50 split as they are on the east side. I water them none at all. I prune them none at all (is that a thing with herbs?). I talk sweet nothings to them never…and they grow and grow. Maybe you’ll get lucky with these 3, too.

Herbs Thyme

Thyme. Quintessential to French cuisine, thyme is a fragrant, earthy, and delicate. Thyme is often used alongside other herbs, such as rosemary, oregano, and parsley. Commonly seen used in bean and vegetable-based dishes, it can also be a super star when paired with eggs and when used in sauces and marinades.

Herbs Oregano

Oregano. Commonly thought of as being an Italian herb, oregano is also a staple in both Greek and Mexican cuisine. Oregano works well with meats, tomato-based dishes and sauces, and eggs. It’s also perfect for soups and stews to bump flavor.

Herbs Sage

Sage. This velvety, tender herb will be good for picking nearly year-round. Other than the few very bitter cold months, sage is living and in tact. While sage isn’t widely used in cooking, it pairs beautifully with sausage, cured meats, and cheese. It is most commonly used in fall cooking and in Thanksgiving dishes, such as stuffing. Try using sage in egg-based breakfast dishes, such as frittatas or quiches, as well as with lean proteins (chicken, pork chops, pork loin, etc.).

Be well,

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5 Comments

  1. Nancy
    May 15, 2015 / 12:21 pm

    Glad you are having good luck with your herbs. I have always been incredibly lucky in growing basil – mine get huge. In fact, I’ve often said that if I wasn’t a dietitian, I should have been a basil farmer!

  2. Tammy V
    May 15, 2015 / 2:55 pm

    Try chives too. I live in CO and mine come back every year. I call them my true sign of Spring. 🙂 I grew sage for awhile, but I never seemed to use it. I like your ideas though.

  3. June 8, 2015 / 7:50 pm

    This is great to know! I too live in Michigan and I have recently begun a clean eating/ fitness regime and was thinking once the weather got nicer I would possibly start my own garden to have fresh herbs and vegetables to add to my meals.

  4. Bee
    August 26, 2018 / 2:02 pm

    I would swap out the sage because I don’t care for it. Yes, chives are the best thing which I can grow.
    Thyme never does well for me but I moved recently and will try it again! (Maybe bad garden carma
    previously?) What must the soil condition be for successful herbs? Does parsley only thrive if/when
    it reseeds? I am so eager to try my had at herbs again! Thanks for your tips.

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