How to Dry Herbs

Herbs are often very expensive to buy in the grocery store. Many people grow herbs in pots in their home year round, so they can have fresh herbs whenever they need them. If you don’t have a place for them indoors, you can grow them during the summer, and then dry and store them for use throughout the year. This is fairly easy to do, and you don’t need any special equipment. They are best collected in the morning after the dew has evaporated from the leaves. It is also best to harvest them before they flower. Use scissors or a knife to cut the stems. Remove any diseased leaves. Rinse off the stems, shake them, and lay them out to dry on paper towels, blotting the excess moisture with additional towels. Next, gather up 4 or 5 of the stems and tie them at the bottom. Cut holes in a paper bag, put the stems in the bag upside down, and gather the bag around the stems, securing it with a string or rubber band. Hang the bag up in an unused area away from the light. Check on them after about two weeks. Once they have dried, separate the leaves from the stems, and store in plastic bags. This is one method, but other methods have also been successful. Some people just remove the leaves from the stems after rinsing and drying as above, and lay them on racks to dry. Just be careful to keep them away from the light and watch for any signs of mold. One additional method is to lay them on racks in front of a dehumidifier where the air will dry them quickly.