Paper lunch bags- amount depends on the size of your garden.
Ribbon or twine- both for wrapping the bundles and also to create a ‘clothesline’
Clothespins (1 per bundle of herbs)
2-3 Thumb tacks or 3M plastic hooks
Funnel or paper rolled into a funnel
Step 1) Cutting your herbs. In this photo you will see a “Y” in red that the arrow is pointing to. No matter if it’s herbs, veggies, pruning shrubs, cutting flowers anything with gardening–you ALWAYS want to make the cut ABOVE the “Y” this causes less damage to the plant and also triggers it to produce more if it is a blooming flower of growing plant–in this case- herbs. 🙂
Step 3) Continue this process until all desired cuttings have been done.
Step 4) Once you have everything cut, bring indoors and wash herbs under cool water and lay herbs on a paper towel spread out and blot dry. Allow moisture to fully evoporate before moving forward. <–SUPER important. If herbs are not well dried from excess water/moisture you run the risk of getting moldy herbs and all your hard work ends up in the trash 🙁
Step 5) After herbs have dried, group together back into bundles.
Step 6) Take a small bundle and tie a ribbon that is approx 10″ around the base of the herbs. Make more than 1 bundle of the same herb if needed. Leave the ribbon streamers attached. Do not trim. You will need them to hang the herbs up.
Step 7) Label a paper lunch bag when it’s in the upside down position with what type of herb it is.
Step 8) Cut a small ‘X’ in the center of the bottom of the lunch bag
Step 9) Insert bundle of herbs into lunch bag and feed the stems and ribbon out of the “x” you made. The bags are important because it will take several weeks for the herbs to fully dry out and ready to bottle an the bags allow the herbs to breathe while keeping dust off of them. 🙂
Continue this pattern with all of your herbs until all are bagged and complete.
Next, find an area in your home that is cool and dark. This could be a closet, pantry, basement, etc. I chose the wall in my pantry. String the approprate amount of twine of ribbon to create a “clothesline”. Secure the clothesline with thumb tacks or the 3M plastic hooks. Once you have the line strung, hang your herbs up to dry as shown below by laying the ribbon from the stems of the herbs over the clothesline and secure with a clothespin
Allow about a 4-6 weeks to dry completley. I checked on mine every 2 weeks roughly. You want them to be dry and ‘crunchy’ to the touch.
How to process and jar your herbs:
Before processing, locate or purchase spice jars, small jars, recycle baby food jars, or whatever you can think of! 🙂 You will need something for these herbs to call ‘home’ until you are ready to cook with them. I went on Amazon and found a set of 6 glass spice jars for $9 with free shipping. I’m sure any local dollar store would have something that would work too.
So, the time has passed and you have your ‘crunchy’ shriveled up herbs and jars ready to roll!
Remove your herb bags from their clothesline and cut or tear off the paper lunch bag. Place one bunch at a time in a mortar and pestle or on a cutting board and grind or finely chop the herbs in to the desired size you like and funnel each herb into its storage container.
Now put these herbs in your spice cabinet and enjoy the fruits (or herbs) of your labor!