Continuing and Distance Education 


Herb Growing, Design, and Use

Dr. Leonard Perry, Extension Professor
Dept Plant and Soil Science (656-2630), 212 Jeffords, UVM, Burlington VT 05405 (best, quickest response)


Three credits

All assignments due by dates noted on Blackboard.  Tests and Project are linked on  Blackboard.  .

Meetings: none scheduled, optional consultations with instructor; online course

Book required: HomeGrown Herbs, Tammi Hartung, Storey Publ, 255pp (or Kindle version)

optional: Your Backyard Herb Garden, Miranda Smith, Rodale Press

(Both texts are available as inexpensive paperbacks from booksellers, or the required one in Kindle format.)
additional:  several handouts, other references, and weblinks will be provided through Blackboard

What It’s About:

This course will be of use to anyone interested in learning more on this always popular group of plants.  Sufficient background is provided through the texts and supplemental materials for any,regardless of prior background knowledge.  Herbs have been used by so many worldwide for many centuries, and consistently remain popular both for flower and vegetable gardeners, or those merely interested in herbs and using them.  Students, home gardeners, beginning agricultural producers, retailers and their staff, will benefit from this course, no matter the region of the country.

How It Works: 

This completely online course is based on the chapters of the text, grouped into five tests:

1. Selection and Design (chapters 1-2)
2. Culture (chapters 3-6—soils, propagation, maintenance, pests and diseases)
3. Harvesting (chapter 7)
4. Using herbs (chapters 8-9, in personal care and cooking)
5. Plants (chapter 10, main herbs and their specific needs and uses)

Tests are open book, untimed, done online, and will be comprised of several question formats.  You can stop and resume tests later, but once submitted this will be your grade.  Tests are designed to reinforce student’s familiarity with the material, to synthesize various topics, and to problem solve.An ID test will help you get familiar with both photos and line drawings of key herbs.

The final garden plan project will guide and provide practice to students in creating a personalized herb garden for their needs and purposes.  This should be on a specific topic such as edible flowers, cooking, historic, ornamental, or a specific crop such as various mints, basils, or thymes.  Alternatively, students may choose to prepare a plan for an herb growing or business enterprise (such as medicinal herbs). Communications including meetings, if needed, with the professor will provide guidance and ideas, suggestions for improvements, and considerations from plant choice through culture.

Email contact between professor and students is used as needed, particularly on the project, and to share information. The syllabus on Blackboard, AND the tips, will serve as the contract for the course and should be read thoroughly. Students are expected to follow the UVM Code of Academic Integrity (


Grades will be determined on a 10 point standard scale, ie 90-100=A, 80-89=B, etc.  Within each letter, grades will be split, such as 90-92=A-, 93-97=A, 98-100=A+.  Quizzes will be taken online (open book), with automatic grading (once your quiz is submitted you'll get the score).  The design plan will be graded manually as shown below.

(800 points total):

Book Tests (500 points total, 100 points each, 5 tests)
ID Test (100 points)
Project (200 points total: 100 points each for appropriate herb selection, plan details/ design)

  "It is not so very important for a person to learn facts. For that he does not really need a college. He can learn them from books. The value of an education ... is not learning of many facts but the training of the mind to think something that cannot be learned from textbooks."-- Albert Einstein

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