When it comes to gardening I can’t even keep cactus alive. I use to joke that I have spiritual plants that often go on fasts because I’d forget to water them. But I am a health nut who loves when I experience bites that excite my tastebuds with flavors that can only come from fresh herbs.All those jars of dried and crushed seasoning that’s been sitting in my cabinet since they were gifted to me at my wedding cannot compare to a fresh mint leaf in an ice-cold glass of lemonade, fresh squeezed of course. With spring in the air, my desire for easily accessible,nutrient packed, deliciousness is outweighing my fear of unintentionally killing another plant. I’ve decided to give it another try and focus on successfully growing just three herbs.

Sage is a beautiful plant with pretty purple blossoms, but it’s also been known to improve brain function and memory. Since I can’t remember what I ate for lunch most days, adding sage to my garden and diet is worth a try

When I was pregnant I discovered mint. My stomach was upset and I was miserably uncomfortable. My husband gave me some mint tea and I was cured almost instantly. Mint has such a refreshing taste and can make any cold beverage taste like summer. It grows and spreads fast so I won’t have to worry when my teen boys want me to share with them.

Every Christmas I buy a little rosemary bush that’s been shaped to resemble a Christmas tree. It smells so good … until it dies.

My neighbor has two giant rosemary bushes that I always pull sprigs from just to eat on my way home or to put in my pot roast. It looks pretty and gives it that just-like-grandma-use-to-make taste.

I read that I can pull a young sprig from a mature bush, like my neighbor’s, and keep it in water for a couple of weeks until it grows roots. It has to be kept in a warm place with no direct sunlight which explains why my Christmas rosemary dies every year.

Like the other plants I’ve chosen to grow, Rosemary has health benefits. It has been used to suppress nasal congestion and seasonal allergies which I will need if I’m to be hanging out in a garden.

Whether you’re a seasoned gardener or, like me, you’re a plant’s worst nightmare growing your own food is a less expensive way to eat nutrient rich produce with more flavor than the stuff at the grocery stores.

My gardening friend gave me a recipe to try and I’ve shared it below. Do you have a favorite recipe using what you’ve pulled from your garden? I could use all the inspiration I can get.

Lemon Rosemary Marinade:
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup fresh rosemary sprigs
1 lemon juices and zested
1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
2 garlic cloves
1/2 tsp. salt1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 sweet onion
Blend together and use as marinade for chicken or vegetable kabobs.

By Guest Blogger: Rebecca Gates