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Making herb wreaths can be both fun and useful. Herb wreaths make an attractive way to display and store dried herbs. You can hang them in kitchens for easy access, use them to decorate doors and gates, or give them to friends and family as gifts. When making your first herb wreath, you will most likely limit the herbs used to the ones suggested in the directions you are following. However, once you understand the basics of making herb wreaths, you will probably want to branch out a little. So, here is a list of twenty herbs that work well in herb wreaths. These herbs have been chosen based on their usefulness, ease of drying, fragrance, and beauty. Choose your favorite herb or mix and match for an herb wreath that is beautiful, fragrant, and uniquely your own.
20 Best Herbs to Use In Making Dried Herb Wreaths
#1 Rosemary is a heavily scented, pine like herb, used in a number of dishes. It very possibly the most used herb in herb wreaths. This is due to the fact that it stays fragrant and green for an exceptionally long time and requires little real effort to dry. Unlike some herbs, rosemary does not need to be dried before it is added to an herb wreath, even when you are using it as a base for other herbs. Even better, the plant itself if hardy and easy to grow. Use it in your next herb wreath, then add it to your herb garden. You'll be sure to have plenty for your herb wreaths next year.
#2 Lavender is frequently used in herb wreaths for a number of reasons. The heavy sleep inducing fragrance is one reason. The bold purple color is another. Lavender works well with a variety of herbs and can add a bold splash of color to your herb wreath. Use it to scent your home or clip a few sprigs to place next to your pillow. It will promote deep and restful sleep.
#3 Sage's dark woody leaves are easily added to an herb wreath, both as a base and secondary herb. It is great for kitchen herb wreaths because the herb is so well used. Sage is great for soups and stews, pot roast, and broiled chicken. Use it as the base of your herb wreath or add it to any herb wreath that is going to get plenty of kitchen use.
#4 Oregano Like sage, oregano is extremely versatile in the kitchen. Great for soup bases, pastas, and Italian inspired dishes, oregano can add flavor without overpowering the natural flavors of your food. It looks great in herb wreaths and is certain to be well used.
#5 Mint Though mint isn't as easy to dry as some herbs, it still deserves a spot on the list for herb wreaths for its great scent and many uses. A holiday favorite, mint leaves can be added to hot tea for a sweet, soothing treat or added to a pot of boiling water to spread a minty fragrance throughout your home.
#6 Savory A green, attractive herb, savory is most often used for flavoring vegetables, beans, or greens. It can also be used as a substitute for oregano or thyme. A great addition to soups and stews, savory is another herb worth adding to your herb wreath.
#7 Thyme With its tiny flowers and evergreen qualities, thyme is an attractive addition to any herb wreath. Commonly used in cooking, thyme is a favorite for marinades and gravy. The strong flavor works well with garlic, olives, and even anchovies. It will certainly be a favorite herb when added to kitchen herb wreaths.
#8 Marjoram, or wild oregano, is another kitchen herb that is often used in herb wreaths. It is easy to dry and works well in recipes calling for bold flavor like chili and stews. It is also one of the few herbs that is actually better dried than fresh. Add it to your kitchen herb wreaths for a tasty addition to your favorite recipes.
#9 Lemon Verbena The delicate green leaves of the lemon verbena have such a strong lemon scent that the plant is also known as the lemon plant. Lemon verbena leaves can be used as a base for herb wreaths and added to herbal tea. The dried herb is great for any recipe that calls for lemon flavoring, including certain chicken, fish, and shrimp recipes.
#10 Safflower A hardy plant with red or orange flowers, safflower is a common addition to herb wreaths. It adds a nice touch of fall color and the herb it self is useful int the kitchen as the herb has cholesterol lowering properties.
#11 Yarrow is an herb more popular for its uses in healing than in any recipe. Once used to speed healing of wounds on the battlegrounds, yarrow is still commonly used by herbalists today. It is often added to teas for reducing fever and the symptoms of colds and flu. It has a number of varieties in different colors, and can add a light touch of color to herb wreaths.
#12 Garlic bulbs are often added to herbal wreaths that will be used in the kitchen. A culinary favorite, garlic can be added to nearly any dish, be it a marinade for your favorite meat or a savory stew. The bright white bulbs add a homey look to herb wreaths and serve as a visual reminder that herb wreaths are as useful as they are attractive.
#13 Chilies Peppers It's easy to forget about chilie peppers when creating an herb wreath, but these spicy favorites can add a touch of color to your herb wreaths and a bit of kick to your meals. Add them to fall inspired wreaths to emphasize the reds and oranges of the season or as the focal point of a chili recipe wreath.
#14 Cinnamon Sticks Cinnamon is a favorite of fall and winter holiday decorating, but few people think to use the sticks themselves, rather than the scented oil. While adding cinnamon oil to your herb wreaths can give them plenty of fall fragrance, it can actually be detrimental to the other herbs. Instead, buy a handful of cinnamon sticks and tie them to your herb wreath with a bit of ribbon. The cinnamon sticks can be added to hot chocolate or tea and grated for fresh cinnamon on your breakfast toast.
#15 Lambs Ear The wide green leaves of the lambs ear herb make it a favorite for lining the base of your herb wreath. Though they don't have much use in the culinary arts, their fuzzy, suede like texture makes an attractive addition to herb wreaths, especially those including flowers.
#16 Dill Well known for its role in pickling and canning, dill can add a delicate texture to herb wreaths. Dried, it can be added to plain yogurt, cheese, and sour cream and is a favorite for chip and cracker dips.
#17 Anise Similar to licorice, anise has a dark, bold scent. It is used often, though sparingly in cooking, and is one of the main ingredients of the sweet drink, anisette. The tiny star shaped flowers are easy to dry and add a unique texture to herb wreaths.
#18 Chives, or green onions, are another great herb for your herb garden. Tied in tiny bunches and added to your herb wreaths, the small while bulbs have a number of culinary uses. They taste similar to small, mild onions, and can be added to soups, stews, roasts, and gravies.
#19 Mistletoe is a traditional favorite for wreaths, especially during the holiday season. However, mistletoe is highly toxic to children and pets and real mistletoe is rarely used in making herb wreaths. If you want the traditional look of mistletoe for your holiday herb wreath, consider using the plastic variety sold in craft stores. Your herb wreath will have all of the traditional beauty associated with the herb and none of the dangerous risks. If you must use real mistletoe, be sure to keep the decoration far away from children or pets.
#20 Flowers are more of a category than an actual herb. When creating an herb wreath, give some thought to the flowers that can be added. While many flowers aren't edible and won't be much use in kitchen herb wreaths, you can create whole wreaths centered around a certain type or color of flower. Roses, sunflowers, bluebonnets, and wildflowers can all add a touch of color and beauty to your herb wreath. Just remember to check for toxicity when adding an herb to a kitchen herb wreath.
A Few Final Tips
While you can always make single herb wreaths, don't be afraid to mix and match or create your herb wreath with a theme. You can use different herbs spread throughout your herb wreaths or collect them in bunches that lie end to end. When creating an herb wreath for culinary use, make sure the recipient of the wreath has a way to tell which herb is which. You can use tiny, hand printed labels on strings, or create a single card that identifies the herbs.
Don't think that because herb wreaths are natural, they can't include a few decorative elements. Consider weaving in a bit of brightly colored ribbon or backing the wreath with a little lace. You can even buy small decorations, such as plastic flowers or pumpkins and add them to the wreath. Just remember that if the herbs will be used for cooking, you don't want to get glue or other adhesives on them. Use flexible wire or string to attach the inedible elements of your wreath.