Funny as it may sound, I love to drive around the city of Kuala Lumpur and glance up at apartment building to spy at the balcony that spills over with greenery. It makes me feel extra fresh knowing that there are still many plants growing around the city.
Kitchen gardeners would appreciate the convenience of fresh herbs at home, and what could be more convenient to have a mini herb garden indoor? Home-grown herbs do not only help to add pops of flavor to your food in a way nothing else can, but it is also a fun way to experiment a wide range of varieties in different dishes and save money.
It is not as hard as it sounds. All you need is to follow the steps below and use the right tools to harvest your herbs. Growing flavorful herbs at home are within your reach.
Step 1: Find the Best Spot
To grow herbs indoors, they need as much natural sunlight as possible. Be sure to keep an eye out to see if they are getting enough sunlight. Place them in a sunny spot near the window or use grow light that mimics direct sunlight.
Note: They need to receive at least 6 hours of sun daily
Some herbs require less light. These herbs include mint, parsley, and thyme. Lastly, if you are living in a tiny house, find ways to utilize your vertical space. You can opt for hanging baskets or a multilevel plant stands that are excellent ways to plant more herbs indoor. If you have a rail, use it by attaching boxes along with them.
Step 2: Pick Some Pots
You can pick any pots as long as it provides enough drainage. It is important to let excess water escape, which is why most pots have holes at the bottom of them. While mason jars may look appealing, they don’t make the best herb gardens.
Pick a pot that matches the size of the herbs because you don’t want to let your plants to spend extra energy growing their roots. On the other hand, a cramped planter will cause your herbs to become root-bound which hamper their nutrition and killing them slowing.
Step 3: Choose Your Herbs
If you are trying to grow your own herbs for the first time, make it simple. Herbs such as mint, parsley, and basil are good for pot-growing. Here are some examples of herbs and their requirements:
Basil is relatively easy to grow and they love the sun a lot. It also performs best in rich soil that is well watered. Basil can be grown easily from seed. However, it hates standing in water where its stems will turn black. Thus, let the leaves almost start to wilt before watering them.
Mint is best grown in its own container and above ground. It can be under shade but is better under strong sunlight. These plants are tough and they grow aggressively.
Mint is a spreading herb. In short, the middle dies back over time. When this happens, cut then in half and turn the two sides round and put them back into the pot so that the new growth sits together.
Oregano has small and flavorful leaves. It requires full sunlight and plenty of drainages.
People who eat parsley loves them a lot and the chefs prefer the flat-leaved over curly due to its flavor. Parsley does best in moist and well-drained soil. They are resilient and can grow well in partially shaded areas.
Thyme prefers less water but strong sunlight and well-drained soil, so don’t overwatering them. However, thyme is a very slow-growing plant from seed. It is recommended to buy young plants for a faster crop.
Rosemary leaves are highly aromatic. The herbs need a cool climate, plenty of sun, and moist soil. It thrives in 6-8 hours of direct sun and allow top inch of soil to dry out between watering, and then water thoroughly.
Step 4: Forget seeds, use starter plants
Unless you’re a qualified gardener, use starter plants for your herbs. This will save you much of the grow time and increase your chances of a successful harvest.
Step 5: Get the right soil
Use potting soil, and not garden soil. Potting soil drains water well, while garden soil does not. Potting soils is also lighter and porous, but garden soil are dense and traps moisture inside pots.
It is recommended to use high-quality potting soil into the planter. Don’t forget to amend the soil depending on the type of herbs you are planting. For instance, Mediterranean herbs such as oregano, thrive, ad rosemary thrives in sandier soils.
Step 6: Care and harvesting
Planting herbs indoor takes constant, regular care to flourish. You need to water them on a consistent schedule and give them room to grow.
If you are planting several varieties in a large planter, make sure to plan the taller herbs at the back and the shorter ones towards the front. Just make sure to harvest them often and match any treatment to their specific needs.
Step 7: Label Stakes & Insert into Planter
Use a market and a wood to write the name of the plant. Once it is done, you can make extra stakes and keep them blank for future use. This will help make your mini home garden look beautiful with a touch of fancy writing style.