Let’s be honest. There’s simply no better way to beat the summer heat than with an ice cold cocktail garnished with fresh-picked garden favorites straight from your own backyard.
Growing a “cocktail garden” is an easy way to freshen up your drinks this summer. You don’t have to build a greenhouse; gardens can be small raised beds or individual pots on the patio.
To get the most out of your cocktail garden with the least amount of hassle, follow a few pointers. First, think about what herbs and spices you’re more likely to use, whether in cocktails or in the kitchen. Then, find our which ones hold up best in the summer sun. If you need a little help, we’ve compiled a list of our favorites.
Light, yet potent, lavender lends itself to beautifully fragrant complexities. (Lemonade, Lemon ‘n’ Lavender Tini)
A citrus taste with an herbal aroma, lemongrass pairs well with most Asian-inspired cocktails. (Thai Mojito)
Probably the most popular cocktail companion, mint is a winning choice for muddling, infusing or simply garnishing. (Mojito, Julep, Lemonade, Sodas)
With its assertive pine-like fragrance, rosemary can be overwhelming. But when used sparingly, it adds a wealth of flavor to some of our favorite cocktails. (Gimlet, Gin Fizz)
Earthy and woody with just a pinch of peppery goodness, sage’s distinctive flavor is sure to spice things up. Just use a light hand. (Spicy Citrus Sipper)
An all-purpose, famous herb in the cocktail world, basil is one that can bring out sweet or spice in a way that is oh, so nice. (Martini, Gin Fizz, Tea)
Now that you’ve picked out your plants, it’s time to actually plant them. You can plant the seeds or transplant already blooming plants at your local nursery. After you’ve planted, remember your garden needs six hours of direct sun each day and plenty of water.
Having a garden solely committed to cocktails is not only trendy, but also a lovely way to set your patio apart. So, when you’re planting your garden, don’t keep it a secret. Share with others in your neighborhood and invite them over for a late-night libation. We’re sure they’ll find it positively intoxicating.
What would you plant in a cocktail garden? Tell us in the comments.