HOME > Chowhound > Gardening >

Growing Herbs and Shallots

alkapal Sep 29, 2010 04:22 PM

[NOTE: We've split this discussion from a thread on the Home Cooking board: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/724710 -- The Chowhound Team].

i think you need to get the french gray shallot starter bulb sets.... e.g., http://www.kitchengardenseeds.com/cgi...

good luck. if i weren't such a slug, i'd do that, too.

and if i were smart, i'd ask the folks on the gardening thread about their experience with their own good sources (no reflection on the aforementioned link)....

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. c oliver RE: alkapal Sep 29, 2010 04:32 PM

    Here's a source that I like:


    I think they can be grown from seed but I've never heard of anyone actually doing it.

    12 Replies
    1. re: c oliver
      alkapal RE: c oliver Sep 29, 2010 04:44 PM

      you know, it'd be worth churning up some fresh earth for those little shallot babies, huh?

      1. re: alkapal
        Hank Hanover RE: alkapal Sep 29, 2010 04:53 PM

        Well, they are so expensive that container gardening with them would be worth it. Throw some herbs in there.. You know the ones that cost $2.99 a bunch at the grocery store?

        1. re: Hank Hanover
          morwen RE: Hank Hanover Sep 29, 2010 05:09 PM

          I grew shallots this past summer and they were easy. Don't even know what kind they were, found them at the local Southern States store and they were just marked "Shallots". There were maybe 12 bulbs in the bag. I now have a basketful of the little buggers. I have French Gray bulb sets on the way from Scheepers Kitchen Garden Seeds. At $19.95/lb it sounds ridiculously expensive given the discussion here, but if you plant them all you'll have enough to see you through the winter, give some away to your friends, plus have enough to plant the following year's crop. Scheepers, like many places, only ship shallot sets in the fall so order soon!

          1. re: Hank Hanover
            alkapal RE: Hank Hanover Sep 29, 2010 05:32 PM

            which herbs for the autumn here in the mid-atlantic?

            1. re: alkapal
              eight_inch_pestle RE: alkapal Sep 29, 2010 06:14 PM

              What's your climate zone, alkapal? Just guessing, I'd imagine things like chives and mint could overwinter---especially under a cloche.

              1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                alkapal RE: eight_inch_pestle Sep 29, 2010 06:30 PM

                chives are great year round. i've got a 15 year old (at least) chive clump in a pot. mint... i guess it is always around. sage, too. hmmm. zone 6b? http://www.usna.usda.gov/Hardzone/hzm...

              2. re: alkapal
                Glendale is hungry RE: alkapal Sep 30, 2010 06:45 AM

                Hi alkapal,

                I'm in Queens (NYC) and in my back yard have mint, chives, sage, and thyme that made it through all of last winter with no problem at all (lots of snow and frigid temperatures). These are all still going strong!

                This year I've added rosemary and something that was called, "Texas tarragon" when I bought it (I think it's actually "Mexican tarragon"). It's supposed to be a perennial and, at present, is doing very well.

                Next year I hope to add oregano and see how that does.

                There are other herbs that are annuals that do well during the summer like dill and basil. However, dill is pretty much done by now unless you started a second batch during the middle of the summer and by this time basil usually starts tasting a little harsh.

                'appy 'erbing!


                Glendale is hungry...

                1. re: Glendale is hungry
                  alkapal RE: Glendale is hungry Sep 30, 2010 07:45 AM

                  take off some rosemary cuttings and plant them in containers for growing indoors over the winter.

                  our rosemary outside hasn't survived winter, but the potted plants do quite well.

                  did you use the texas tarragon? we planted it last year, but i never used it. it didn't last the winter either.

                  italian oregano will winter just fine. i've had a plant (ever-growing) for years. don't know about mexican oregano.

                  1. re: alkapal
                    Glendale is hungry RE: alkapal Sep 30, 2010 11:47 AM

                    Hi alkapal,

                    I've used the Texas tarragon and have found that I need to use quite a bit of it to obtain the desired "licoricey" level of flavor in a recipe (perhaps twice as much as the recipe calls for). As best I can tell it's nowhere near as strong as the usual French tarragon.

                    Thanks for the rosemary tip. Will do that!


                    Glendale is hungry...

                    1. re: alkapal
                      iL Divo RE: alkapal Feb 25, 2014 07:55 AM

                      seems like all you gotta do with rosemary is yank off a branch of it and stick it in soil/dirt and before you know it, you gotta terrific new batch of rosemary. one of my starters is right out side the front door on the porch for easy pinching. otherwise, I gotta go out to the side walk and pull some from the overhanging giant plant that grows to the sidewalk. other neighbors are seen grabbing my rosemary and that makes me smile. I have enough of it to spread around the country after all.

                      the shallots are in that same pot by the front door but they're everywhere else also.

                      don't forget about the shallot greens too. cut up baby fine on top of split pea soup or twice baked potatoes and mixed into deviled eggs, so good and not too strong.

                      1. re: iL Divo
                        c oliver RE: iL Divo Feb 25, 2014 08:18 AM

                        While one can start rosemary from a cutting, it's so cheap to buy a tiny one, I say why bother? You only need one so no biggie. I've been known to take large quantities of rosemary as hostess gifts :) And I use loppers rather than pruners for cutting it back.

              3. re: alkapal
                c oliver RE: alkapal Sep 29, 2010 05:00 PM

                Definitely. I don't see them being container garden-esque since there are 15-30/# and should be planted 6" apart. And by the time they're ready to harvest, they're not going to be very ornamental. But "some fresh earth" would be my preference.

            Show Hidden Posts