Water-Wise Herb Gardening

Water Conservation for Lawn and Landscape November 18, 2014 Print Friendly and PDF

Water-wise herb gardening begins with an understanding of which commonly planted herbs are drought tolerant. Many water wise herbs commonly used in the United States originated from Europe, the Mediterranean region, and Asia.

Herbs have had a place in the garden for centuries. They have been used for medicine, dye for fabric, seasoning and flavorings for food and drink, and fragrance.

In medieval European gardens, perennial flowering plants and herbs were planted together near the kitchen for easy access. These were the original cottage gardens which are still popular today.



herbs in a raises bed created with landscape pavers


Drought tolerant (clockwise from top left) parsley, variegated sage, rosemary, and thyme
Photo credit: Jill Clardy Flickr CC BY-NC-SA 2.0


Herbs can be incorporated into mixed planting beds. 
Photo credit: Scott Akerman Flickr CC BY 2.0

Practices to Reduce Water Use

Herbs are a great addition to any landscape and are a logical choice for container gardens.

Tips on how to grow and use herbs in the Florida garden.
Video courtesy of Pinellas County Extension, Florida

Additional Resources:


California - Herbs Reward Water Conservation
Colorado - Planning & plants for an herb garden
Utah - Herb Container Gardens


Minnesota: Herbs


Alabama - Growing Herbs


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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.