Herb Garden in Pots


Gardening herbs in pots is not a difficult task. In the long run, it takes less time to garden them this way than it would to place the herbs in garden beds as beds don't have to be prepared or maintained. The main difference is herbs grown in pots will need to be watered more often than if they were grown in the ground, according to Rose Marie McGee, author of "The Bountiful Garden."


A benefit of growing an herb garden in a pot is that you can better control the soil. Even if the soil in your area is deficient of nutrients, you can still have an herb garden by using organic potting soil mixed with compost. Use containers with casters to make them easier to move once planted. Online resource Gardening Know How notes these types of gardens can be used when space is an issue. They also make it possible to prolong the gardening season. The Garden Club website advises herbs can be grown in pots inside, negating the need for outdoor space all together.

How to Plant

The pots chosen for growing herbs should be large and durable, with drainage holes. Fill the pots with damp high-quality potting soil. Purdue University Extension advises adding slow-release fertilizer to the potting soil if it does not already contain compost or fertilizer. Place pots where desired prior to adding soil, as the wet soil may make them too heavy to move. Sow seeds at the depths suggested on the packets, or at about a 1/4 inch deep. If using seedlings, insert into the soil with a small garden trowel so the roots are completely covered.

Invasive Herbs

There are two types of herbs that should be kept separate. Invasive herbs are those that spread easily and take over a garden space. Pennyroyal, a member of the invasive mint family, is an example of this type of herb. These herbs should be planted one type per container.

Non-Invasive Herbs

Non-invasive herbs are herbs that do not spread wildly, either by runner or seed, and are therefore more easily controlled. More than one type of these herbs can be grown in a garden pot. Garlic chives, and parsley are examples of herbs that are not invasive. A combination of these types of herbs can be grown in one large container.


Experiment with herbs to determine which grow well together. Try different combinations to see which herbs benefit others, and which will not work well together. Plants should have the same growing requirements as to sun and moisture. To start, a combination of thyme, sage and parsley when planted together, attract beneficial insects to the garden. Chives do well planted with parsley, and rosemary will complement sage, according to Golden Harvest Organics.

Keywords: herb garden, herb pots, herb container garden

About this Author

Shannon Buck is a freelance writer residing in the small town of Milford, Maine. Her work has appeared on several sites including GreenandSave.com, where she writes The Green Mom column. She has written on many subjects, including home improvement, gardening, low-income living, writing and homeschooling.