There is nothing worse than buying a bunch of herbs at the grocery store, only to have them turn into a bunch of mush by the end of the week. Yes, you made that spicy herb butter for your wood-grilled lobster, but unfortunately you can’t buy just two sprigs of thyme or 1/4 cup chopped rosemary . And because we’re all about the fresh flavours herbs bring, but want to avoid waste as much as possible, we’re giving you all the tools you need to grow your own herbs at home.
Not only is this one of the easiest types of gardens to grow and maintain, but depending on your living situation, you can build your garden indoors or outdoors, in a pot or in a raised bed, or even in your kitchen counter—there’s no excuse to not amp up the flavour of your next dish.
Here’s everything you need to grow your own herb garden:
First, decide whether you want to grow your herbs outdoors or indoors. If you choose outside, try a raised planter that will add some height to your garden. It also makes it easy to move, and so you don’t have to bend over to pick and prune. If you’re going to be growing your garden inside, we love the look of this tabletop planter. Put it on your kitchen counter or use it as a centrepiece on your kitchen table.
Before you get to the soil and planting part of the job, try on a pair of gardening gloves. This bamboo set is durable and has a natural-grip feel. It’ll also help you avoid getting dirt under your nails.
Drainage is especially important for gardens so soil can dry out and not suffer from disease. If your container doesn’t have a self-draining system (a hole in the bottom with a drip plate is good enough), we suggest adding a layer of pebbles to the bottom of your planter. And while you’re welcome to grab a few pebbles from your driveway or garden outside, you can also grab a bag from online so you always have them on hand.
In order to grow a herb garden, you’re going to need some herbs. This seed starter pack has some of the most useful for spicing up your recipes—parsley, thyme, cilantro, and basil.
Don’t want to start your garden from scratch? Try this ready-to-go indoor herb garden. This Italian blend has oregano, rosemary, and thyme. There’s also a pesto combination that would be delicious to blend up for use in this pizza muffin recipe.
Herbs need about four hours of sunlight/natural light a day, and with all that light, you can be sure the soil will dry out. Keep this retro-looking watering can on your counter to remember to give them a drink when the soil is dry to the touch. The skinny spout also helps you get right to the root of your plants and avoid getting water on the leaves, which is important to avoid mildew.
Although we truly believe you can handle these herbs on your own, a little formal guidance may help boost your confidence. This classic book easily breaks down exactly what herbs to plant, how to water them, and just about everything else you need to know to ensure you have a zesty, thriving garden.
And just when you thought it couldn’t get any easier, we introduce you to the AeroGarden. This easy-to-use planter comes with a mix of seeds, reminds you when to feed your herbs, and requires zero soil. Depending on the model you buy, you can also grow small fruits and vegetables.
If we haven’t convinced you growing your own herbs is the way to go this season, you can always buy this sweet tea towel and enjoy looking at them—no maintenance required.