Gardening: Spring Herbs and Early Vegetables

Cary, NC – I know, it still feels like Winter. But now is the time to get some herbs and Spring veggies in the ground.


Early Spring is the best time of year to plant kitchen herbs. They still have time to grow some roots before leaf production takes over.

Herbs can spread in the garden (you might say they are a borderline weed). Unless you have a contained spot of room to spread, keep them in a pot.

One nice thing to do is group a few herbs in the same pot.

Generally speaking, herbs like sun. I like having them near the kitchen door. Figure out a nice place in your garden and get a few herbs in small pots this weekend at the garden store.

Spring Vegetables

Timing is everything with Spring vegetables.

Lettuce, spinach, mustards, cabbage all like cool weather. But many can’t take a hard frost. What to do? Get them in the ground now, as Winter is fading into Spring.

Here are some of my favorite Spring veggies for right now. Note: Mesclun is a lettuce mix. Beans need staking and room to climb.


Instant Color

If you want a pop of instant color, look for hanging baskets and pots of seasonal decorative plants. Great near the front door or up at the mailbox.



‘Pigeon Purple’ Spring Kale

Groundcover Plants

Groundcover plants fill in bare spots beneath and between larger specimen plants or beds.

Typically, groundcovers are considered to fall in the range of two to 12 inches high. Many groundcovers are evergreen; some have seasonal flowers. All are prized for small leaves (to contrast with the other plants in your garden) and dense coverage that smothers out weeds.

Groundcover plants you can plant now include small shrubs like juniper and spruce, shade plants including ferns and pachysandra, ivy, Monkey Grass and Black Mondo Grass, sedge, Candytuft and Heuchera.

Golden Pacific Juniper

Story and pictures by Hal Goodtree The Gardening column on CaryCitizen is sponsored by Garden Supply Company on Old Apex Road in Cary.