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Herb Gardening In Your Home
By Mary Hanna
For thousands and thousands of years we have turned to plants we label herbs for spice, dye, fragrance and cosmetics. We have believed that specific herbs had properties to repel insects, evil and vampires, while others hooked the flawless sweetheart, good luck or bees to pollinate our crops. For some, the use of herbs can heal headaches and burns. And, of course, what would terrific dining be without the culinary herbs?

Collected here are some tips for herb gardening indoors that will reproduce the conditions of an exterior garden. For Herb gardening in your home the growing climate needs to be very much the same as the conditions in your outside garden.

Be sure you have a bright, sunny windowsill that your herbs will delight in. Use a vessel that is at least 6 - 12 inches deep.

Get your herb plants from a reputable garden center nursery who will have an extreme amount of garden wisdom to aid you with your inside garden. You will require some garden implements like a small digging garden tool, garden gloves, organic fertilizer and some pint-sized gardening containers. You probably already have most of these garden supplies in your garage or garden shed.

Soil is the uppermost essential aspect of herb gardening in your home. Use only prime grade potting soil with an organic fertilizer worked in. If you sense it is too fine a soil, use a scant amount pf perlite. Fertilize while potting the herbs and they should be cheerful until spring. If you own an herb that is not sprouting vigorously add a little organic liquid fertilizer to it when watering.

When you wish to transplant the herb, go one inch up in the size of the gardening vessel. If the plant is in a two inch pot, go to a three inch gardening pot. Leave the roots alone and be wary not to bruise the delicate stem.

Don't ever plant oreganos, mints, lemon balm or bee balm with other plants since they will overgrow the container. Pot these herbs in a garden container all their own. It is important to always plant those herbs in containers since they tend to “overrun” the garden.

Some gardeners swear that you must deposit garden stones in the bottom of the gardening receptacle, but I question that notion. I feel that the garden stones take valued space away from the herbs roots. It is better to lay a small portion of wire screening over the hole in the pot to maintain it from getting clogged.

Here are some examples


of which herbs to plant together:

* For a garden with an Italian flavor plant Sweet basil, Italian parsley, Oregano, Marjoram and Thyme.
* For a winning scented pot use Lavender, Rose scented geranium, Lemon balm, Lemon thyme, and Pineapple sage.
* For utterly wonderful salads try Garlic chives, Rocket, Salad burnet, Parsley, Celery.
* And if you are delighted by French Cooking use Tarragon, Chervil, Parsley, Chives and Sage

Provide time for your herbs to grow used to their unfamiliar conditions. Once you see growth you can start using or drying your herbs. Snip and use your herbs repeatedly to inspire them to grow big and bushy.

When it comes to light, all herbs need to get at least 4 to 6 hours of sunlight a day on your window sill. If your window doesn’t provide that much sun then get garden grow lights and place them three inches above the herbs. If you live in a extremely hot climate shade the herbs during the hottest periods. If you live in a very cold area keep the herbs away from the cold window panes.

Rule of thumb for watering is not to let the herbs dry out but don’t drench them either. Herbs do not like to sit in saturated soil. An inexpensive water meter from your garden center nursery will assist with this essential step in growing your herbs. Always use water that is at room temperature so you do not wallop the herb's roots with water that is too cold.

If you understand all of these steps and you implement them you will have a flourishing herb garden all winter on your bright windowsill.

Happy Herbal Gardening!

Copyright © Mary Hanna All Rights Reserved.

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This page was updated on Nov 2009 and is Copyright © 2003 by Global Com Consulting Inc.

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