Davin’s Patented Herb Drying Contraption

thyme drying in a paper bag

It has been unbearably hot and muggy here over the last few days. If you’re living with the same conditions, I recommend waiting for the humidity to lift before attempting to air dry any significant quantity of herbs. However, the other night Davin picked too much thyme for a meal and spontaneously constructed this contraption as a way to ensure that the herbs were able to get air on all sides and avoid going moldy.

It’s just a paper bag clipped to the rope that raises and lowers the kitchen blinds by a close pin. It isn’t fancy, but I was impressed by his ingenuity.

This morning I was over at a friend’s, and she had set up a similar contraption to dry large quantities of lavender. Her’s was a clothesline strung across the kitchen with each bunch of lavender in its own paperbag to catch the flowers that would otherwise fall and drop onto her head and into meals at the table. She also used clothespins to hold the bags on the line.

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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8 thoughts on “Davin’s Patented Herb Drying Contraption

  1. My current contraption is paper bags clipped onto wire clothes hangers with binder clips. I can then hang the wire hangers from a curtain rod or a floor lamp that isn’t currently in use!

  2. I buy a pack of lunch bags at the grocery store. I find a great place to dry a bag of herbs is to set it on the warm internet router.

    • I use lunch paper-bags too. I put a hole in the bottom of the bag in which it now becomes the top of the bag. Using a bread tie I gently tie the bottoms of the herb stalks together, pass the bunch through the bag with the ends sticking out of the hole and clip the entire bag onto a nail (very small!) I have tacked onto my kitchen window and allow them to dry. They are safe. They remain clean – no dust particles get into this bag and my herbs dry! I also have cut a hole along the back/front and both sides of this lunch bag (using a bigger bag?? Cut holes accordingly then so the herb(s) get fresh air). Works like a charm. How long does it take to dry my herbs? About a week or 1 1/2 weeks. In the meantime – my kitchen smells “herby”!! and I have dried herbs that I use all winter long.

  3. share the patent David:-) i have been doing the same thing for the past 5 years. i knit and crochet so I have yards and yards of colored yarn. have a long crocheted string, clip the brownpaper bags to the string with wooden clothespins. i use different color crayons to date and label the bags, then i draw picture of a plant in different colors on the bags.

  4. Thanks for the information. I am fairly new to gardening and I just had the same thing happen to me; picking too much thyme for my recipe. I will have to try this!

  5. Great idea! Not only does the bag help with catching dropped pieces it also absorbs some of the moisture in the air to reduce the humidity.

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