Indoor Herb Gardens – It’s kind of a big dill

By Nancy Kaller on Sep 22, 2021 at 07:07 PM in Articles

Indoor Herb Gardens – It’s kind of a big dill

Indoor Herb Gardens – It’s kind of a big dill

Imagine having herbs right at your fingertips and then adding those fresh herbs to season your homemade spaghetti sauce, guacamole, roasted vegetables, soups, etc. 

So, let’s get growing!

Most herb gardens require at least six to eight hours of bright light each day and enough water, but not so much water that you rot the roots. If your herb is wilting, it needs more water. If you are unsure whether you have enough sunlight for your herbs to grow well, start small, and experiment and consider these types of herbs: mint, chives, parsley, dill, cilantro, watercress. These grow well in pots or containers. Watch for these signs that indicate the plant needs additional light: drooping, dullish color, yellowing, stunted growth, or stems that are elongated. Every herb is different, so you will find different herbs need more or less levels of light. You may want to consider an LED grow light as an easy solution. Some are fairly inexpensive and can clamp onto the side of a pot or container or how about a tabletop grow light that will cover a larger area. 

When picking a pot or container for your gardens, we suggest a glazed clay pot. These are colorful, nice looking and can come as individual pots or as a tray-style where the pots sit on the tray and are perfect for a windowsill garden, just be sure the pot or container has drainage holes, and if not a tray, be sure it has a saucer that is included. 

Your potting mix should contain sterile garden soil and compost, coconut coir, and other additives as needed. Try an organic potting mix that’s peat-free. According to the experts, they recommend steering clear of peat because it’s not a sustainable resource. By starting with a good potting mix, your garden should thrive. 

It’s harvest time! Once the plant is established, you should be able to take half away without weakening the plant. Now let’s start snipping, cutting, and cooking. The best time to harvest the herbs is in the morning when the essential oils are at their peak. Use sharp scissors or pruning shears for those woody stems and pinch those that have soft stems. Don’t tear at the steams to avoid attracting disease and harming the plant. Cut just above a node, or small bump or joint where stem branches out, this encourages branching and new growth. If you plan to hang the herbs to dry, remember to cut long stems.

Storing your herbs is pretty simple. Fresh cut stems that you plan on using the same day can be kept in a little water until you are ready. For hardy herbs (Sage, Savory, Chives, Thyme, Rosemary), wash them in cold water, drain the water, and spin or pat them dry. Layer the stems on paper towels, and pat gently with more paper towels to blot away any excess moisture. Store them by arranging them lengthwise in a single layer on a slightly damp paper towel, rolling them up like a jelly roll, then place them in a zipper-lock bag or wrap them in plastic wrap for 1-2 weeks. 

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This article is not intended to be exhaustive or a substitute for qualified legal advice. Laws and statutes are always subject to change and may vary by county or city. You are responsible for performing your research and complying with all laws applicable to your unique situation.

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