“Are there any herbs that will overwinter in zone 7b?” Question from Deb of Alvarado, Texas
Answer: Yes! There are many perennial herbs that will thrive in your northeast Texas location. I understand that your summers are hot and muggy and your winters are chilly and windy. For your home, I would opt for perennial herbs adapted to Mediterranean climates. These include the following:
The spring onionyflavor of chives (Allium schoenoprasum, USDA Hardiness Zones 4-8) is a favorite in spring dishes. Edible clusters of mauve flowers appear in mid-spring, rising above the upright foliage. Chives love sun and rich garden soil amended with compost, such as OMRI Listed Black Gold Garden Compost Blend. Harvest them fresh, when they are most flavorful, and add them to omelets, salads, or vegetables.
Oregano (Origanum vulgare, USDA Hardiness Zones 4-10) thrives in sun and has low, rooting stems that spread, so be sure to give it space to grow. You can also contain it in a pot. Dry the leaves in fall for winter cooking.
Thyme (Thymus vulgaris, USDA Hardiness Zones 5-9) is a common herb across Europe with a low, spreading, shrubby habit and pungent evergreen leaves. It requires well-drained soil and a sunny spot. Harvest the leafy stems any time of year or dry the leaves for herbal mixes.
The leathery, gray, evergreen leaves of sage (Salvia officinalis, USDA Hardiness Zones 4-8) are tasty, and this hardy shrubby perennial bears pretty lavender-blue flowers in summer, which are also edible, and attract bees. Give it plenty of sun and average soil with good drainage.
Of all the French lavenders to try, ‘Provence’ (Lavandula x intermedia ‘Provence’, USDA Hardiness Zones 6-9) is extra fragrant and beautiful. It is a vigorous hybrid between English lavender (L. angustifolia) and Portuguese lavender (L. latifolia). [To learn more about growing lavender, click here.]
In the Mediterranean, hardy rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis ‘Arp’, USDA Hardiness Zones 7-10) is planted in aromatic evergreen hedges. This sun and drought-loving herb has needle-like leaves that are resinous and piney. Dry them for winter cooking or harvest fresh stems year round.
I hope this helps!
Happy perennial herb gardening!