22 Essential Perennial Herbs To Plant Now And Enjoy Every Year

Aiming a rich herb garden but does not want to yearly cultivate? Perennial herbs like rosemary, sage, thyme, mint are the type herbs you do not need to be replanted each year. Perennial herbs are low maintenance and come back year after year. 

Over the course of a single year, perennial types bloom, crop and die. But in the same rootstock does a new life will be born.

It comes very handy to grow some herbs within your reach. Herbs are useful in cooking, as an ornament and natural healing.

You may create a new herb garden or choose to have a few planted indoors. Either way, we listed 22 of the best perennial herbs you can try to grow for culinary and/or just gardening satisfaction.

Essential Perennial Herbs To Plant Now & Enjoy Every Year

Plant These 22 Perennial Herbs That Grow All Year Round

Perennials sprout newly from the same roots and these herbs are well celebrated for its several medicinal and savory use. Check our favorite perennial herbs to plant in your garden how to get the best from.

1. Oregano(Origanum)

  • Water requirement: Minimal
  • Sun exposure: Partial to full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds, Division, Cutting
  • Care: Cut back the plants.about half of the height, before they begin to flower.
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 5 - 10

First on the list is the oregano. This aromatic herb loves warm weather so it does not require much water as other herbs do. Just water it whenever the soil looks and feels dry.

Oregano is a hardy plant that is a good ground cover. To ensure it denser, regular trimmings are recommended. Three to four years old oregano must be thinned out to encourage branching as well.

Leaves are said to be most pungent and flavorful right before its flowers- purple or white- bloom. Storing them in times of cold weather is easy since it can be dried and kept in an airtight container.

Fun fact: Oregano is widely used in Italian dishes as it is known to further enrich tomato-based dishes while it as tea can relieve upset stomach, digestion problems and relaxes nerves. Its name symbolizes ‘substance'.

2. Chives (Allium schoenoprasum)

  • Water requirement: Frequent until minimal when matures
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 12 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds, Division
  • Care: Add organic fertilizer to the soil to keep it fairly rich. Divide the plants every 2-4 years so it will not overcrowd and grow healthy.
  • Bloom time: Mid-spring to early summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-11

Chives are part of the onion family and bloom pretty, edible purple flowers. They are cold-tolerant perennials but loves to be out under the sun.

Throughout the growing season, it prefers moist and well-fertilized soil.

It may be asking attention at first because of the water needs but fully grown chives require minimal care afterward. During harvest, make sure to cut the leaves just above the roots. You may use it fresh or frozen.

Fun Fact: Chives flowers must be cut once bloomed. Dried, ripen flowers scatter seeds thus it can grow anywhere in your garden. Korean dishes prefer onion chives than garlic flavor. Chives symbolize ‘usefulness'.

3. Coneflowers (Echinacea)

Coneflowers (Echinacea)
  • Water requirement: Weekly
  • Sun exposure: Full sunto partial shade
  • Maximum matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds, Division
  • Care: Prune the coneflower to encourage repeat blooming. After every bloom, it can be cut down to ground level
  • Bloom time: Mid-year
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-9

The beautiful cone flowers native to the east of the United States look similar to a daisy. These plants attract bees and butterflies, a very smart and economical way of propagation, but is deer-resistant because of its hairy stems.

Cone flowers can withstand drought that will make it last season to seasons with infrequent watering therein.

They are very tolerant of poor soil conditions but being planted in rich soil can grow a better version of this perennial.

Fun fact: The most common kind of cone flowers is Echinacea purpurea, the purple one. It can grow up to 4 feet so ensure a location that it can grow freely but not shade others.

4. Lavender (Lavandula)

Lavender (Lavandula)
  • Water requirement: Once or twice a week
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 3 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds, Division
  • Care: Add mulch to keep weeds from invading the herb but away from the crown of the lavender plant.Prune plants in the spring approximately one third in height.
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 5-9

Talking about the famous purple plants in the field, Lavender is one of the most popular perennial herb in the list because of its lovely appearance, multiple healing uses, culinary contribution and strong scent.

Lavender, unlike other herbs, are not into wet, moist areas. It can grow from poor soil conditions and asks water minimally maybe once or twice a week.

Medically, lavender is known to have antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and sedative. Surprisingly, they are a member of the vast mint family.

Fun Fact: Lavender is a universal plant that steam distilled oil from this is known to be the Swiss army knife of oils. The scent of lavender is very calming and induces sleep. Lavender symbolizes ‘virtue'.

5. Thyme(Thymus vulgaris)

Thyme(Thymus vulgaris)
  • Water:  Seldom
  • Sun exposure: Full sun, partial sun
  • Matured height: 6-12 inches
  • Propagation: seeds, divisions, cutting
  • Care: Prune after maturity, cut back by 1/3 to encourage fresh growth.
  • Bloom time: Spring
  • Agricultural zone: Zone 4 through 9

Thyme is Another kind of perennial herb that is not a fan of wet and moist areas, thyme loves the sun. It prefers well-drained soil and tolerates dry soil conditions.

But extremely dry areas must have water too for better growth. Watering them is very minimal.

Seeds of thyme are hard to germinate that's why gardeners choose to clip it for further propagation. They do not grow tall rather around 6-12 inches only.

Since thyme loves the sun, it may be planted indoors but kept facing the sun. Once harvested, it may be stored fresh in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Fun fact: Thyme is a very pungent and flavorful herb that can keep its aroma for 2 years given good storage. Thyme symbolizes ‘courage'.

6. Fennel (Foeniculumvulgare)

Fennel (Foeniculumvulgare)
  • Water: Moderate
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Matured height: 3 to 5 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: When fennel dies during winter,cut back flower stems and remove dead foliage.
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zone 4

Fennel is a short-lived perennial herb . It is widely known for its culinary value to be added to several dishes.

Planting and growing such herb is beneficial both in the kitchen and garden where it attracts butterflies. Fennel don't require much attention because it grows on warm areas and needs water on extremely hot & dry weather only.

To allow it to become bushier, regular trimming and cutting must be maintained.

Fun fact: During earlier days, people believe fennel to be magical that can drive evil spirits away. They hang it on their front doors. Fennel can symbolize 'flattery'.

7. Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus)

Tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus)
  • Water: Minimal. during prolonged dry season only
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Cutting
  • Care: Put mulch for winter protection and prune regularly
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zone 4

Often mistaken as a grass, tarragon is not much rewarded to be attractive yet it is known for its culinary value. Tarragon has aromatic leaves with a peppery taste.

Tarragon doesn't require frequently be watered and can tolerate soil with poor conditions. It is required to regularly prune it to grow at it's best.

What is different in tarragon is that its variety, the French tarragon, cannot propagate from seeds, it must be from cutting only.

Fun facts: Tarragon leaves are believed to sustain endurance during long walks if placed inside the shoes. It has a flower interpretation of 'lasting interest'.

8. Sage (Salvia officinalis)

Sage (Salvia officinalis)
  • Water: Occasional
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Matured height: 22 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: Regular deadheading to encourage new bloom
  • Bloom time: Late spring to fall
  • Agricultural zone: Zone 5-9

Sage is a hardy perennial, easy to grow and a very good addition to your kitchen herbs in pots. It comes in many varieties and colors.

The perennial must be planted where there is lots of sunshine. It likes its soil to be well-drained. Hence, this condition is for matured sage only.

Young sage requires regular watering and moisture to grow healthy and avoid drying out. Fully grown must be pruned regularly to ensure density.

Fun fact: Sage is traditionally part of Thanksgiving dishes. It is also believed that people who have sage planted tend to do well in business ventures. The herb symbolizes 'wisdom'.

9. Mint (Mentha)

Mint (Mentha)
  • Water: Regular for moist soil
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Cutting
  • Care: Use light mulch accompanied with regular pruning to avoid sprawling
  • Agricultural zone: Depending on the variety, it ranges from 3-10

The strong scent might remind you of your daily toothpaste. Mint is one type of perennial with distinct features and smell with almost endless uses.

Minimal care is needed for mint's growth. They prefer drained soils but moist avoiding direct sunlight. The same ambiance near streams where they are native.

Young Mint leaves are most flavorful perfect for teas.

Fun fact: Did you know that mint leaves infused with, cucumber, lemon, and ginger are the essential ingredients for effective detox water? Mint can speed up metabolism and control inflammation within. It symbolizes 'virtue'.

10. Marjoram (Origanummajorana)

Marjoram (Origanummajorana)
  • Water requirement: Water regularly, being careful not to overwater
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 36 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care:  Avoid cold temperatures,better yet keep indoors during winter
  • Bloom time: Mid-summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 6-11

Marjoram is an herb that is a perennial only to a certain region like the south of America. It is useful in the kitchen as it complements almost any meat, fish, dairy, or vegetable dish as long as it's not sweet.

Since marjoram is a low-growing herb, it is easy to grow indoors. It is recommended to sow seeds in early spring. When it matured, you may transfer it in the ground keeping it watered regularly.

Fun fact: Marjoram is the cousin of oregano and mostly used in salads. Greeks and Romans regarded it as a universal symbol of happiness.

11. Chamomile (Chamaemelumnobile)

Chamomile (Chamaemelumnobile)
  • Water requirement: Moderate
  • Sun exposure: Partial shade to full sun
  • Maximum matured height: (Roman)6 inches; (German) 1-2 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care:  Cut back after each flush of flowering
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: (Roman) Zones 4-9; (German) Zones 2-8

Chamomile is of two kinds- Roman or German- but growing follows identical procedures. It is popular with the calming effect it has especially when blended with tea.

The plant can tolerate drought, therefore, it is obvious that it can grow outdoors. However, it is best planted in shaded areas.

It is not easily thirsty to water except on prolonged and extremely hot weather thus minimal care is needed. It gives off a strong scent that keeps pests away.

Fun fact: Almost every part of the chamomile plant is edible. As a popular healing plant, common folk claims that it may be regarded as the European counterpart of ginseng. Chamomile symbolizes 'patience'.

12. Curry (Helichrysumitalicum)

Curry (Helichrysumitalicum)
  • Water requirement: Minimal
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: Use mulch during winter to keep soil warm and cut to within about 3 inches of its base during late fall
  • Bloom time: Spring
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 8-11

Have you heard of the curry plant? Not too popular though but definitely deserve some recognition. The tender perennial has a mild flavor in contrast to its strong aroma.

The herb is not strong against frost rather prefers warm conditions with ample sunlight and soil that drains well. It can thrive in poor soil conditions and requires seldom watering.

The green-gray foliage blooms little yellow flowers can be propagated from seeds or cuttings and is productive until the third or fourth year.

Fun fact: Curry plant looks like a crossover or hybrid of lavender and rosemary. Unlike its name, it doesn't resemble the scent of Curry spice but instead like maple syrup.

13. Catnip (Nepetacataria)

Catnip (Nepetacataria)
  • Water requirement: Twice a week for the first two weeks, reducing to every other week once established
  • Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade
  • Maximum matured height: 4 feet
  • Propagation: Cutting
  • Care: Use mulch to help them survive the cold and prune after it blooms
  • Bloom time: Summer and fall
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-9

As the name suggests, catnip is very attractive to cats. They bear little white or lavender flowers.

Catnip grows best in sunny parts of the garden so if you plan to have it indoors, you have to place it outside from time to time.

Water it regularly without overwatering it and will grow well even in poor soil conditions.

These plants are pretty invasive that if no precautions in the Gardener's part can have it growing in different parts of the garden. Nevertheless, it is a good seasoning or ornament.

Fun fact: According to veterinary experts, catnip is not harmful to cats but is very "addictive" to their species.

14. Viola (Viola cornuta)

Viola (Viola cornuta)
  • Water requirement: Regular
  • Sun exposure: Partial shade
  • Maximum matured height: 10 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: Deadhead old flowers by pinching off the flower blooms
  • Bloom time: Spring or fall
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-8

All varieties of Viola is violet! They are edible with a minty taste. Often, violas are added in salads or as decor on cakes.

Violas aren't fond of summer heat that's why people mistook them as annuals. During summer they cannot withstand heat although watered regularly.

But if you'll manage to survive them, they are actually perennials and can last long.

Water them at least twice a week to keep the soil moist especially on hot weather. Mulch them over and violas will appreciate it.

Fun fact: Violas are closely related to pansies

15. Anise hyssop (Agastachefoeniculum)

Anise hyssop (Agastachefoeniculum)
  • Water requirement: Infrequent
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 4 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: To promote healthy growth, regular trimming is advised. Light pruning helps rejuvenate it.
  • Bloom time: Early summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 4-9

Anise hyssop is a lavender-colored perennial herb that appeals visually in the garden and also culinary and medically recognized.

A favorite of honeybees, hyssops are deer-resistant and can tolerate full sun to drought. Minimal watering is expected and they can practically grow on their own.

It is not very recommendable to grow them indoors because they grow up to 4 feet tall.

Fun fact: Anise hyssop is neither anise nor hyssop. It's flowers can be added in salads while it's leaves (fresh or dried) is best on teas. Hyssop symbolizes 'cleanliness'

16. Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)

Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)
  • Water requirement: Regular, even until established
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 24 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: The plant is invasive so set in a bottomless container to prevent roots from crawling. Deadhead to avoid self-sowing.
  • Bloom time: Summer to fall
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 4-9

Lemon balm is part of the mint family and bears small white flowers. They somewhat resemble peppermint and spearmint herbs in its appearance but has a pleasant lemon smell.

Growing lemon balm is easy as any kind of soil is welcome but rich, well-drained soil can give it in full bloom. It can grow in shade but prefer full sun with regular watering.

As you may expect, the lemony leaves can be used in your teas to give you the zest similar to citrus. You may also use it as a potpourri.

Fun fact: Lemon balm is invasive in the garden not because of its roots but seeds. It symbolizes 'sympathy'.

17. Winter savory (Saturejamontana)

Winter savory (Saturejamontana)
  • Water requirement: Regular, even until established
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 15 inches
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: Cut back to a few inches every spring, replanted every 4 years. Trim plants on a regular basis to promote new growth.
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 5-11

Winter savory is a hardy, perennial herb with glossy, dark green leaves and woody stems. It has a strong peppery scent and flavor that can actually substitute real salt and pepper.

It can survive up to 6 hours in full sun with regular watering in a well-draining soil. Once established,It requires little care as it doesn't need much water. Too moist soil can cause it to short live.

Fun fact: If there is winter savory, another variety is summer savory! The name was derived from 'satyr', a half goat and half man mythological creature. Savory symbolizes 'interest'.

18. Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens)

Wintergreen (Gaultheria procumbens)
  • Water requirement: Regular
  • Sun exposure: Partial shade
  • Maximum matured height: 7 inches
  • Propagation: Division, Cutting
  • Care: Prune it back every spring to help in new growth
  • Bloom time: Mid-year
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-7

A hardy perennial, Wintergreen is a good indoor plant that can bear red berries. Its leaves are flavorful for teas and the fruit may be eaten fresh.

Wintergreen can tolerate little direct sunlight about 1-2 hours only so it prefers to be indoors. If in the garden, it likes shady part but bright enough in fairly moist soil.

Regular watering is required even until it's maturity. It requires no pruning since it not meant to be bushy.

Fun fact: Wintergreen can release oil from crushed leaves and it is aromatically helpful in body sores and rheumatism.

19. Garden Sorrel (Rumexacestosa)

Garden Sorrel (Rumexacestosa)
  • Water requirement: Regular
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 2 feet
  • Propagation: Division, Cutting
  • Care: Mulching can keep the moist of soil and add fertilizer over time. The plant can be divided after every 3-4 years to keep them productive.
  • Bloom time: Summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 3-8

Sorrel is a leafy green perennial with a nice lemon flavor. In some instances, people assume it as a vegetable because of other leafy counterparts.

This plant likes cool ambiance but thrives to the full sun though the shady spots are their better location.

It prefers soil with good drainage rich in fertilizer. Weekly watering and mulching can keep it moist. Surely, it will produce lots of leafy goodness.

Fun fact: Sorrel leaves contain oxalic acid. If you are sensitive to such substances, avoid consumption. It symbolizes 'affection'.

20. Verbena (Verbena officinalis)

Verbena (Verbena officinalis)
  • Water requirement: Keep evenly moist until established until it can tolerate some dry spells.
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 6 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds, Cutting
  • Care: Verbenas benefit from regular deadheading
  • Bloom time: Summer, fall
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 5-11

Comes as annual or perennial, the perennial verbena is a beautiful purple plant known for its medicinal uses.

Perennial verbena tolerates full sun and considered to be drought-resistant as it easily survives warm conditions.

It is not picky with the soil type as long as it drains well. Young verbena must be kept until matured for hot weather.

Verbenas benefit from regular deadheading so it will grow dense without taking over the garden.

Fun fact: Verbenas is also known as vervain, herb of the cross. Also American blue verbena, simpler's joy, holy herb, mosquito plant, and wild hyssop.

21. Rosemary(Rosmarinusofficinalis)

  • Water requirement: Occasional
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 3 feet
  • Propagation: Cutting
  • Care: Rosemary loves periodic fertilizing, prune no more than 1/3 of the plant at any time just above a leaf joint.
  • Bloom time: First quarter of the year
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 9-11

A popular among kitchen enthusiasts, rosemary is a perennial herb which will grow back after a year. with a very aromatic, sweet flavor. It livens flavors of meat, stews, and soups.

Rosemary enjoys a warm environment needing regular watering without overdoing it. It doesn't like to be constantly wet, thus, a well-draining spot is the choice in the garden.

During winter when it will be cooler, the herb prefers to be indoors to avoid frost and dying.Fully grown rosemary needs regular trimming for healthier growth.

Fun fact: Rosemary can be placed under ironing board so the fragrance will be released every time heat passes. The tea is said to improve one's memory. The herb symbolizes 'remembrance'.

22. Lovage (Levisticumofficinale)

Lovage (Levisticumofficinale)
  • Water requirement: Occasional
  • Sun exposure: Full sun
  • Maximum matured height: 3 feet
  • Propagation: Seeds
  • Care: During summer, consider pruning plants to force them to give new leaves.
  • Bloom time: Early summer
  • Agricultural zone: Zones 4
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Appearance similar to celery, can be used as a garnish like parsley and economical substitute to basil in pesto, lovage is a perennial herb that can do that all.

Lovage certainly is friendly to warm climate in full sun but seedlings require consistent moisture. When several inches tall, watering may then be kept to a minimum. It is recommended to be on a well-draining soil.

Fun fact: All parts of the herb are useful from roots to leaves. The roots are served as vegetables, the stem can be eaten like celery, the flowers can give oil and the leaves incorporates in salads.

Perennial Herbs For The Win

No need to wonder, herbs are more than beautiful greens in containers or garden. Their uses aren't limited to medicinal and  the kitchen only. Growing some is ideal to landscape too.

Furthermore, the perennial types of herbs can be harvested multiple times in a season. Yet, be very mindful of its environment and conditions.

Some are likely to grow in a certain place meeting the necessary requirements. Choose perennial herbs and harvest more than you expect.

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