Optimising flavour in herbs

Whether you grow herbs in fields or glasshouses, these pages highlight the growing factors you can control to help achieve a more intense flavour.

Find out how to optimise growing conditions for improved flavour in herbs

The flavour of herbs can be heavily dependent on the conditions in which they’re grown. While the UK climate can be a limiting factor in day length and temperatures, there are numerous aspects of the growing process that you can manipulate, to ensure the herbs you grow are packed with the intense flavour consumers demand. 

 On these pages, we’ll cover factors you can influence during herb growing, including: 

  • Choosing the right variety for your growing conditions 
  • Irrigation, fertilisation and biostimulants 
  • Light quality, day length and temperature 
  • Harvest time and post-harvest storage and care 

Choose your herb from the pages below to find out information for what you’re cultivating. 

Optimising flavour in basil

Usually grown in a Mediterranean climate, basil is at a disadvantage in the light quality and levels available in the UK. Optimising growing conditions will ensure your basil has the best possible flavour without affecting yield. 

Find out how to optimise the flavour of basil

Optimising flavour in chives

Popular for their onion-like flavour, chives are a hardy, low-maintenance herb easily grown in the UK climate. Find out the right conditions for growing chives with a stronger flavour for the fresh cut and potted markets. 

Discover how to optimise the flavour of chives

Optimising flavour in coriander

While most studies into coriander flavour have focused on seeds, it’s been shown there are a few ways you can optimise growing conditions to optimise leaf flavour. Discover our top recommendations.

Read how to optimise the flavour of coriander

Optimising flavour in mint

Whether you grow peppermint or spearmint, there are numerous factors affecting the flavour of your mint. Learn how to influence growing conditions to produce mint with an intense flavour for the fresh cut and potted markets in the UK.

Find out how to optimise the flavour of mint

Optimising flavour in parsley

Consumers show a preference for more intense flavour in parsley, preferring the aroma to be ‘typical’ and ‘parsley-like’. Read our top recommendations for ensuring this strong flavour in flat and curly leaf parsley.

Learn how to optimise the flavour of parsley

Optimising flavour in rosemary

However it’s grown, variety, light quality and availability are the main factors in rosemary flavour. Read our advice on optimising growing conditions to help improve the flavour of rosemary for potted, cut, glasshouse or field production. 

Discover how to optimise the flavour of rosemary

Useful links

Read the full technical review on optimising flavour in herbs

Read the Herbs Best Practice Guide for information on management of pests and diseases on protected herbs

Read about weed control in herbs from the SCEPTREplus project