How to Create an Indoor Herb Garden

Overview

Fresh herbs can make a big difference in many recipes, but they can be expensive to purchase, especially during winter months. Many cooks have found that an indoor herb garden can be a convenient, inexpensive way to have access to herbs that will jazz up recipes all year long. Indoor herb gardens can be placed anywhere in your home, but you may find it most convenient to place it right on your kitchen windowsill.

Step 1

Determine what kinds of herbs to plant based on what you use most often in your recipes. Almost any herb will grow indoors, but some do better than others. Common herbs such as chives, thyme, parsley, basil and oregano will all thrive in your indoor herb garden.

Step 2

Purchase seeds or seedlings from a nursery. Find seedlings that are healthy and green.

Step 3

Find a sunny spot for your garden. Herbs need at least six hours of direct sunlight.

Step 4

Purchase lights to supplement natural sunlight. Full spectrum fluorescent lights work well and shouldn't put a strain on your budget.

Step 5

Purchase small pots for your herbs. Pots 3-4 inches across will work best. A tray makes watering the pots easier.

Step 6

Open the bag of soilless potting soil and moisten it according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Step 7

Fill each pot with enough potting soil to cover the roots of seedlings, or if planting seeds, fill the pots one-third full.

Step 8

Transplant seedlings carefully or place seeds about 1 inch below the soil.

Step 9

Place the pots onto the tray. Give seeds a small amount of water directly on the soil until they sprout into seedlings. For seedlings, pour water into the tray to about a half-inch and let the root systems of the herbs soak the water up.

Step 10

Water herbs from above once plants are mature; provide enough water that it falls through the bottom drainage holes. Keep the tray emptied regularly to avoid excess moisture.

Step 11

Feed the herbs water-soluble fertilizer once leaves are present.

Step 12

Harvest herbs as needed once leaves appear.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not over-water herbs. This can cause mildew and discourage your plants from thriving. Make sure that your herb pots have proper drainage.

Things You'll Need

  • Seeds or seedlings
  • Small pots
  • Plastic tray
  • Soilless potting soil
  • Full spectrum fluorescent lights
  • Water-soluble fertilizer

References

  • National Gardening Association: Indoor Herb Gardening
Keywords: creating an indoor herb garden, growing basil and parsley indoors, window garden tips

About this Author

Catherine Rees lives in a log cabin near Salt Lake City, Utah. She has six years of experience as a freelance writer. Though she specializes in wildlife and outdoor activities, her work also includes topics in relationships, gardening and travel. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Utah and writes for Trails.com, GardenGuides.com, eHow.com and HubPages.com.