Cocktail Garden

I was browsing around on Michael’s Inspired by Charm blog, and saw this great post on a cocktail garden. What a great idea! Loads of cocktails are made with herbs, fruits and veggies, so why not have them handy all in one place? If you haven’t checked out his blog, check it out! It’s full of inspiration, great recipes and how-to’s.  
He saw the idea on Laura’s “Garden Answer” You Tube channel. I thought “what a great idea”, so sauntered right over to check it out. She is a wealth of information. Check out her other videos as well. And even if you only love gardening “a little” you will enjoy her great videos.

The plants are planted in a raised free standing planter. You can put it anywhere but preferably near where you would mix drinks outside or right near your kitchen door. 

I presently have a in ground herb garden right near my kitchen door, so I could group these together and add to that garden as well.

Plants to add to your cocktail garden:

“Good Hearted Tomato”
plant – Gets its name from the heart shaped tomatoes. Stays compact and has loads of cherry tomatoes on it all season long. Perfect for containers. Thrives in heat and humidity.

“Fire Away Hot and Heavy”
Hot Pepper plant – Hot pepper but not extremely hot. Comparable to a mild Jalapeno. Glossy foliage minimized water loss. Heat tolerant.

“Berried Treasure”
Strawberry plant – You can enjoy flowers and fruit all Summer long. Perfect for containers, but are also perennial in zones 4-9. Come in red or pink flowers.

“Sweet Romance” Lavender plant – Heat and drought tolerant. Beautiful foliage and vibrant flowers. Fragrant.

“Amazel” Basil plant – resistant to downy mildew. produces a higher yield of usable, deliciously aromatic leaves than other varieties. The more you harvest, the better it grows. Heat tolerant.

“BBQ” Rosemary
plant – Long, upright stems are perfect for skewering and roasting vegetables and meats on the BBQ. Heat and drought tolerant.

“Tri Color” Sage
plant – Heat and drought tolerant. Fragrant leaves. Beautiful focal interest.

“English Wedgewood” Thyme plant – This plant has a slightly sweeter taste than English Thyme. Leaves slightly larger than other English varieties.

“Purple” Basil plant – Purple basil is not only pretty to look at, it has a somewhat different flavor. The flavor is more an anise flavor similar to clove.

“Petite” Lemon Grass plant – Lemon grass is great but grows pretty tall. For this use you need a petite or dwarf version that won’t overtake the raised bed. This variety has 4 to 5 inch leaves. If you can find it (which I haven’t as of this writing), it would be a great addition to your planter. If not, lemon verbena and lemon thyme are great as well. You only need a leaf or two of verbena. Verbena is stronger and less bitter than lemon grass. Another option is lemon balm. 

“Peppermint” plant – Plant this in a container separate from other plants. I had these planted in my herb garden and they take over. You can plant in containers and even in cold climates it will still come back the next year. Problem solved for invasive mint. And you most definitely need peppermint for a cocktail garden!

Now that we have hit the types of plant to put in your garden, we need to address the container if you’re not planting in the ground and the soil to use.

These raised bed containers are great because there is no bending over to cut or water the herbs. They come in self watering or non self watering. They come in plastic, wood metal, you name it. It’s all a preference. There are raised beds that sit on the ground or up on legs.

This one is 72″ x 23″ x 30″. Unfinished, it has plenty of room for planting tomatoes, herbs or flowers.

Or this one is stained and has an elastically pleasing look to blend in with your landscaping and outdoor decor. 

This one is 96″ x 48″ x 24″. It sits right on the ground.

This one has wheels so it can be moved if necessary.

You can even opt for this Vertical Garden Planter for ease of access to your herbs and plants.

OR…If you don’t want to worry about it rotting over the years, try one of these Composite Wood Planters.

If you already have or love a certain planter that is not already self watering, you can add these self watering trays to your existing planter.

Soil can you use for your raised bed garden:

Espoma Organic Raised Bed Mix is a great solution! You can find it at most garden centers in easy to handle bags. Contains a rich blend of only the finest natural ingredients. No synthetic plant foods or chemicals are used.

Don’t forget to add some Organic Starter Fertilizer to the top and work in slightly.

Check out these great cocktails you can make with herbs:

Drinks using Basil:
Gin Basil Smash
Basil Lime Cooler
Basil Limoncello Cocktail
Honey Basil Lemonade

Drinks using Rosemary:
Fireside Cocktail
Rosemary Cocktail
Rosemary Gin Fizz

Drinks using Mint:
Tomojito – Tomato Mojito
Soho Cocktail

Drinks using Hot Peppers:
Spicy Mojito
Spicy Mezcal Margarita

Drinks using Lemon Grass:
Soho Cocktail

Drinks using Lavender:
Garden Patch Smash Cocktail

Drinks using Sage:
Blackberry Sage Smash

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