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herbs

 

Start with herbs.

When just starting a container garden, it’s wise to start small… and that means herbs. Wouldn’t it be so much better to be able to pop outside to your porch or patio and snip off a few sprigs of rosemary, or a handful of mint? Herbs work well in pots or containers, too, which makes them ideal beginner plants for newbie gardeners.

 

Start small and start with whatever herbs you already use to cook with.

Herbs are also fairly simple indoors. Things like rosemary and thyme like a lot of light, but not too much water, and can be grown together in one pot. Parsley and cilantro like more water, and can also be grown together.

If you think you cant handle much, try Basil; it is pretty easy. Just make sure to clip leaves often don’t just let them accumulate. Clipping makes them bushier.

 

I’d say arugula, lettuce, and herbs give you the most bang for your buck… they take very little space, they’re very easy to grow, you get the most nutritional benefit eating your greens super fresh.

 

 

Use big pots.

 

If you buy plants that come in small plastic pots, the first thing you should do is replant them in larger pots, even herbs.

 

Use large containers. Nothing smaller than 8″, even for herbs. Otherwise you’ll be very disappointed in your yield.

 

Good drainage, good size. Make sure your container has a nice-sized hole so that surplus water can drain away; herbs can’t stand to have their roots sitting in too-wet soil. The shape of the container doesn’t matter to a plant, but size does: A larger volume of potting mix dries out more slowly, so use the largest pot you can. It’s better to combine two or more plants in a large pot than to use several little pots.

 

Good soil. Gardeners talk about “soil,” but for containers, it’s actually better to use something labeled “potting mix,” rather than anything labeled “potting soil.” What is sold as “potting soil” is likely to be poor-quality and sticky with poor drainage. “Potting mix” is lighter, made mostly from organic matter such as peat or composted plant matter, and designed to give container plants the texture and drainage they need.

 

Remember to water regularly, container planting dries out quickly.

 

 

Consider your light source.

 

Do you get full-on sun all day long? Or is it bright in the morning, and shady in the afternoon? Take note of how the sun moves around your space throughout the day, and plant accordingly!

 

Sun is essential. Most of our culinary herbs come from the Mediterranean and other sun-drenched regions, so they will need a place where the sun shines at least eight hours a day. Growing herbs indoors requires a very sunny south-facing windowsill, and even so, you likely won’t get as lush a harvest as you would outdoors.

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