As any chef will tell you, there’s nothing like having fresh herbs on hand when you’re cooking. Many herbs are simple to grow at home, either on the windowsill or just outside the kitchen door. To get you started, here’s a visual guide on how to grow herbs in pots. Bon appétit!
George works in the Primrose marketing team. As a lover of all things filmic, he also gets involved with our TV ads and web videos.
George’s idea of the perfect time in the garden is a long afternoon sitting in the shade with a good book. A cool breeze, peace and quiet… But of course, he’s usually disturbed by his energetic wire fox terrier, Poppy!
He writes about his misadventures in repotting plants and new discoveries about cat repellers.
“Herbs are the friend of the physician and the pride of cooks.”
For years we’ve known herbs add wonderful depth to our dishes and perform miracles for our health. So with the cold weather now on its way, follow these essential indoor herb growing tricks to ensure your kitchen brims with luscious and rich herbs this autumn.
Engulf them with sunlight
Whilst they can look superb perched up in the nooks of your kitchen, the key to herb growing is light. Herbs want lots of it. You want to provide your herbs with at least 6 hours of sunlight – so place them close to a window. Preferably an east facing window, as this will bathe them in a healthy dose of morning light daily, weather permitting!
Basil really loves sunlight. But for winter time or a more shaded location, you’ll find parsley will become your friend.
Regular, consistent water
When you grow herbs indoors you must remember Mother Nature can no longer give her helping hand – water sources such as rain and morning dew are no longer accessible to your plants. This means you must be extra vigilant to provide regular water. Make sure the soil of your herb garden is always damp.
Always water the soil and roots of your herbs, not the top of the plant where water can quickly evaporate in the warmth of your home. This way the soil will retain much more moisture.
Herbs will be pretty happy in most containers, providing they have plenty of soil per herb. Herbs suck your soil dry of water fast, so the more soil, the more moisture they will have access to. Especially if you are anything like me and forget to water now and again, an indoor windowsill herb garden planter will hold plenty of soil and retain lots of moisture. This means the herbs will be much more forgiving!
Food for food
Should you be feeding your herbs? Absolutely. As you’ll eventually be using these herbs for consumption we suggest you pick a chemical free fertiliser and apply lightly to your herbs every two weeks. You should avoid over fertilising – this can prevent the creation of the herb’s essential oils, reducing their flavour – and who wants to eat bland herbs?
Whatever level you are, there’s a home-grown herb out there for you
For beginners we suggest buying baby herb plants so you don’t have to worry about the germination process. Oregano is incredibly forgiving and grows well even in poor soil. Other herbs we recommend are parsley, mint, chives & thyme.
If you’ve grown herbs before, try growing annual herbs from seed. Leafier herbs will germinate fairly fast so look out for basil, coriander & dill.
If you consider yourself a herb connoisseur, we suggest bulking out your indoor garden with some more exotic and unusual plants. You can grow the quite adaptable Stevia from cuttings or a small plant – now used quite commonly as a natural alternative to refined sugar.
It’s ‘thyme’ to get growing!
Feeling inspired? Check out National Garden Gift Vouchers who are currently running a Herb Garden Competition to help promote growing year-round goodness. They are giving away 25 herb garden packs brimming with thyme, sage, mint, coriander and basil until the end of December 2015.
Tony Stacey is Marketing Manager at the Horticultural Trades Association (HTA), the organisation who administer the National Garden Gift Voucher Scheme. HTA are the leading trade association representing the UK garden industry. Tony is incredibly passionate about promoting gardening campaigns to children and non-gardeners to get the nation more green fingered and inspired to grow their own food.
We were delighted that the Daily Mail chose to feature not one but two of our planters in their ‘6 of the Best’ series in the last Weekend Magazine!
Our fibreglass flared square planterscome in striking colours and are sure to create a focal point in your garden. Whether you’re looking to create a Japanese style garden or just want a splash of colour, these high gloss planters are hard-wearing and come in a range of sizes. They start from £54.95.
Ourzinc flower troughs can be used for special occasions, such as wedding centrepieces, as well as a herb or flowerpot on your kitchen windowsill. They are incredibly lightweight and are suitable for use both indoors and outdoors. They cost £6.45.
Some things you never forget – the first time you laid eyes on each other, the butterflies in your stomach on your first date, and that first kiss.
Whether you’re spending your very first Valentine’s Day together or you’ve celebrated it many times before, we raise our glasses to you. And we’re here to help you create more lasting memories together.
To create the perfect touch for one special evening as well as everyday use, take a look at our gorgeous range of electric candles and candle holders. Our safe flameless candles will fill every room with a soft, romantic glow just like real candles but without the hassle.
For the more practical gift your other half might appreciate one of our herb planter sets.
There’s nothing like having fresh herbs at hand, especially ones you have grown yourself. They come ready with seeds and compost included so you can start your own mini herb garden the day it arrives.
We wish you a great day, and many special memories to come!