Growing herbs at home is ideal if you love to garden, create aromatherapy oils, cook, or just enjoy the sight and smell of colorful fresh herbs. Many common herbs are low-maintenance and are well worth having in your home. These include rosemary, basil, mint and thyme. Whether you are growing your herbs and cinnamon in a greenhouse, outdoors or inside, soil preparation and grouping of the plants are important.
Decide what varieties and how many herbs you want to grow. Pick them according to their uses (whether for cooking, medicinal or aesthetic), your climate (if growing outdoors) and how many herbs you want to grow. Common annuals include basil and coriander; common bienniels include parsley and caraway; common perennials include mint, thyme and chives. A fun herb to grow is cinnamon, which comes from a tree that can be shaped to stay very small. For anywhere but a mild climate, grow cinnamon indoors.
Decide whether you want your garden indoors or outdoors, depending on your region, weather and space. Either way, you must have quality fertile potting soil with good drainage in partial to full sun. Choose to plant in an outside garden, in a greenhouse or in a sunny area of your home in a large planting tray.
Mix rich compost or peat moss into the top 12 inches of the gardening soil. Use 30 percent compost, 10 percent peat moss and 60 percent potting soil.
Keep annuals and perennials planted separately from each other. If it helps, create a diagram of your garden if it is large. Group herbs together that have similar water or sun needs. Cinnamon needs full sun and moderate watering.
Sow your seeds in shallow boxes indoors in late winter, although some seeds (like parsley or coriander) need to be planted at other times like. Plant the seeds in the soil according to their instructions, as different varieties need to be planted deeper than others. A good rule is to sow seeds at a depth of twice their diameter. Insert cinnamon seeds 1/2 inch into the soil. Water seeds with a mister so the soil doesn't wash away.
Fertilize cinnamon each month with a potassium-rich fertilizer. Fertilize other herb varieties as well, according to their needs.
Harvest herbs once they are full grown with well-developed foliage. Harvesting methods vary depending on the herb, but usually the most well-developed leaves should be harvested for use, leaving smaller ones to flourish. The maturation time in gardens also varies.
Expose cinnamon seedlings to more direct sunlight as the tree matures, which won't be for around two years. Harvest cinnamon at this time by cutting a branch off. Let it sit for two days, then trim off any twigs and scrape off the outer layer of bark with a knife. Peel the bark back from the branch in strips that will curl backwards, creating the cinnamon stick. These can be used fresh or dried.
Place a 4-inch layer of mulch in the garden in winter (for outdoor gardens) to protect your biennials and perennials.
Things You Will Need
- Seeds from assorted herbs
- Seeding boxes
- Potting soil
- Spray mister