There are many reasons why growing herbs in the Tropics can be challenging for herb growers. Here we will look at how to grow herbs in the Tropics.
One of the primary reasons why growing a herb garden in the Tropics is difficult is because of the warm temperature. Many of the herbs used for cooking can grow well in countries in the temperate region and cannot adapt to regions where the temperature is hot. Herbs like tarragon and chives need cold temperature once in a while or they would become prone to diseases.
The Tropics is likewise a region which is known for having rainy seasons. Too much water on the soil can be risky for herbs such as sage, thyme, and rosemary. Aside from that, the humid temperature of the region can result to fungus-related diseases spreading on the leaves and other parts of the herb.
In addition, the soil in the Tropics contains minimal organic substances and nutrients. Likewise, the region is notorious for insects and other pests. When learning how to grow herbs in the Tropics, you would have to deal with ants and termites infesting your seedlings and young transplants.
However, the reasons mentioned above should not discourage you from establishing a herb garden in the tropics. Here are some pointers on how to grow herbs in the tropics.
1. Choose herbs that can tolerate heat. There are available alternatives for the most common herbs. French tarragon can be replaced by sweet marigold. The annual Welsh onion can replace chives.
2. Plant the herbs in elevated beds. By doing this, you would divert excess rain from the roots. Putting sand or fine gravel will enhance soil drainage. During heavy rains, covering the plants with clear plastic will keep them from the rain.
3. The humid condition is difficult to manage, but the basics of how to grow herbs in the tropics will tell that placing the plant in a windy area will help control humidity.
4. Organic fertilizers such as compost and animal manure can help strengthen the productivity of the soil. Kitchen waste can be turned into compost.
5. Avoid directly sowing in areas where it is possible. Starter seeds should be planted on elevated grounds to keep it away from leafcutting ants and other pests. This way you are increasing the survival of your plant.
6. In learning how to grow herbs in the tropics, you need to check for barriers or traps. You can place water barriers to surround the plants. Tender herbs should be substituted by tougher herbs. It will be worthwhile checking what kind of herbs can be grown in the area because most of the local residents already have an idea on how to grow herbs in the Tropics.
By bearing in mind these considerations, you would be able to develop a mastery of how to grow herbs in the tropics.
Originally posted 2009-07-12 12:03:32.