How to Grow Herbs From Seeds


Growing your own herb garden allows you to harvest fresh herbs for use in the kitchen. Many herbs also produce attractive foliage or flowers, adding an ornamental quality to an indoor or outdoor garden. Starting the herbs from seeds gives you both a greater choice in the types of herbs to grow and saves you money over purchasing seedlings. While each herb plant has its own growing and care requirements, most are started from seeds using the same methods.

Step 1

Fill 3-inch seed pots with a sterile potting mix. Water the mix from the top until the excess moisture begins dripping from the bottom drainage holes in the pot, ensuring the potting mix is evenly moist throughout.

Step 2

Sow one to two herb seeds per pot, planting just one variety of herb in each pot. Plant the seeds to a depth twice that of their width, and then mist the soil surface with water to moisten it.

Step 3

Cover the top of each pot with a plastic bag. Set the herbs in a 60 degree F room to germinate, which takes between seven and 21 days depending on the herb variety.

Step 4

Remove the plastic bags once the seeds have germinated and move the pots to a sunny windowsill. Turn the pots every day so both sides of each herb receives equal amounts of sunlight.

Step 5

Water the plants when the soil surface just begins to dry. Most herbs must have moist, but not soggy, soil at all times when they are still seedlings.

Step 6

Transplant herbs to their permanent pot or to an outdoor bed once they are 3 to 5 inches tall and have produced their second set of true leaves. Plant them in a well-draining, full-sun garden bed outside or transplant them into a 6- to 8-inch diameter pot.

Tips and Warnings

  • Some herbs, like mint, can be invasive in the garden bed. Plant these in containers so they don't choke out your other plants.

Things You'll Need

  • Pots
  • Potting mix
  • Herb seeds
  • Plastic bag


  • University of Missouri Extension: Growing Herbs
  • University of Florida Extension: Herbs In The Florida Garden
Keywords: planting herb seeds, growing herbs, herb gardening

About this Author

Jenny Harrington is a freelance writer of more than five years' experience. Her work has appeared in "Dollar Stretcher" and various blogs. Previously, she owned her own business for four years, selling handmade items online, wholesale and via the crafts fair circuit. Her specialties are small business, crafting, decorating and gardening.