Monday, 4 July 2011


Here's an update on the progress of my Summer Savory and Winter Savory, which I am growing as culinary herbs, from seed sown at the end of March.

Here is one of the Summer Savory plants, Latin name Satureja hortensis. This one is an annual - which means it won't survive a Winter and needs to be grown again from seed each year.

And here is one of the Winter Savory, Latin name Satureja montana. This one is a perennial, which means that it does not need to be grown each year, but will (hopefully) survive for several years.

There are actually three plants in that one pot

The Summer variety is growing much quicker than the other one, which is not surprising since the plants want to flower and set seed all within the one year. Its leaves are softer than those of the Winter variety.

Summer Savory
I would say that they have the texture of Mint, and I envisage using them in much the same way. They would probably not survive long cooking, and are probably best added to your dish just before serving. I have read that Savory of both types is particularly good with pork dishes and with Broad Beans.

The Winter variety grows very slowly, and my plants are still pretty small. I don't think I'll be cropping them until next year! The leaves are much firmer than those of the Summer variety - more akin to the texture of Rosemary, though perhaps not quite so hard. Maybe more like Hyssop.

Winter Savory
The smell and taste of the two types is similar, It's hard to describe, but I would say "antiseptic" (in a nice sort of way) comes quite close, in the way that Rosemary is often used in cosmetics and beauty products.

I have found that both types have been prone to "sudden death syndrome", in that several of my plants have just died for no apparent reason. I'm not even sure whether the cause of their demise has been to do with bugs or weather conditions or soil or watering or whatever. They just suddenly keeled over. Good job I kept several spares, eh?


  1. Antiseptic in a nice sort of way? Intriguing

  2. U've so many different plants in your space! The bean flowers yesterday were really good and colourful - alot of varieties!

  3. Nice description, I'm not familiar with Savory - will have to look into it.

  4. You don't often hear mention of Savory - I used to have Winter Savory - and as you said, it just disappeared. Never been able to source any since.

  5. I'd never heard of savory until I started reading your blog. Interesting.

  6. I used some winter savory last night in my dinner. I picked some Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced some kale and chicory, cooked and coarsely chopped a potato.... put these cooked veg in a pan with oil, garlic, toasted breadcrumbs, herbs (savory, for a dash of lemony flavour when there's not much else in winter, and sage), slivered almonds and lemon peel. At the end I poured over a simple salad dressing of oil and lemon juice. It was beautiful.

  7. So many herbs and veggies I learn about from your blog. Thanks for posting

  8. Savory is on my list of things I really should grow next year. A list that is growing ever longer with each blog post I read, or so it feels...

  9. Me too! I've got quite a collection..but not this yet...Mark, let's perhaps do a cutting or seed swap with some folks at the end of summer in Surrey! :)


Thank you for taking time to leave me a comment! Please note that Comment Moderation is enabled for older posts.