An herb garden is a perfect edible DIY project. It's amazing that it needs just a sliver of space to exist but will offer you months of fresh herbs to enhance your recipes. With both constant temperatures and consistent light (hopefully), indoor gardens have less to contend with than their outdoor counterparts, and can produce year-round results. To help you plant your own DIY herb garden, Timbercreek has a few tips.
Start out Safe
Where you locate your garden isnâ€™t just a sun-question. Make sure itâ€™s in a place people (including yourself) wonâ€™t bump into it, knock it over, or just take up valuable counter space. Outfit your garden in a spot thatâ€™ll be protected, so as not to get annihilated by a grocery bag, backpack, cat paw, or dish.
The simplest option is loading up a number of individual pots with herbs. A better approach is the rectangular plastic or tin trough-type containers that hold a number of different plants together. With this, the soil benefits from the combined species and they can all be watered at once. Another possibility is a bookshelf-style garden with multiple levels holding different pots. They all work. The key here is being creative with your particular space.Â Â
Youâ€™ll need to know how much sun your plants will need, and what theyâ€™ll get based on your windows and orientation. Most vegetables do best in 6+ hours of full sun. Some greens and herbs are happy with less. Surrounding buildings or trees can block the sun, and your orientation usually means there are very specific sun-soaked hours. Check to make sure you hit the minimum for the type of plants you want before you buy seedlings.
You'll need the basic garden essentials:
Pots: The size can vary depending on what you're growing, but make sure there's enough depth for roots to fully develop. Shoot for 8" in diameter.
Soil: Generally easy to find at garden centers or hardware stores. Pick up a mix that's formulated for containers, not the garden soil variety.
Plants: Farmers markets are a great local source for herb and vegetable seedlings. Again, hardware and garden stores normally have a decent selection as well.
Extras: A trowel, watering can, mister (old windex bottle), and fertilizer. Learn more.
Start with Seedlings
No matter what you're growing, buy your herbs as seedlings, not seeds. Growing plants from scratch is actually way harder, especially with a small space and the average personâ€™s time constraints. Go for established toddler herbs and veg from a farmers market or nursery. You'll get edible results much sooner and with less work. Learn more.
Best for Beginners
Basil is a great starter herb. It grows well, smells great, and tastes even better. It also lets you know right away if youâ€™re watering enough - a good tell-tale for the rest of the garden. Other excellent starter herbs are chives, scallions, cilantro, mint (which grows like crazy, so be aware), as well as leafy greens (spinach, lettuce, arugula). Small tomatoes and hot peppers are good options too. Learn more.