Growing Herbs in Pots

Container herb gardening or growing herbs in pots, indoors is a viable solution if you have a limited space. Herbs are very tolerant to indoor temperature, warmth and moderate water requirements. They provide many benefits in addition to culinary delights and flavours. Flowering herb like calendula has very pleasing visual appearance and is used in homeopathy medicines. Most herbs are pest resistant and serve as companion plants to many flowers and vegetables by deterring pests.

Growing herbs in pots is easy and convenient. Almost all of the herbs can be grown indoors in pots. The advantage of having the herbs in pots is portability, the pots can be moved to sunny locations in order to escape frost in cold environments. The temperature can be regulated indoors and controlled in a green house with glow-lights.

A sunny window sill, a balcony or a patio can be utilized efficiently by elevating and stacking pots vertically. The hanging baskets can be arranged in an aesthetic cascading manner at different heights and painted with bright colours to match the natural hues of herbs and create room for growth.

Unglazed clay flower pots and terra cotta jars are well suited to grow herbs. While preparing your pots, provide holes at the bottom for drainage. It is a good idea to add a layer of small gravel or pot shards. Most herbs do not like rich soil and prefer loam with sand. You can plant four to five different herbs in harmony in a single ten by 12 feet pot. Form a complimentary arrangement with chives or garlic in the centre with tall thin blades and herbs with broader leaves at the outside. Growing herbs in pots gives magnificent look with the choice of terra cotta and clay pots.

Potting soil is a mixture of peat moss, perlite, vermiculite and compost. It is specially formulated to ensure water retention and easy drainage in pots and containers. You can find this product easily in the market under the names starting mix, potting mix or transplanting mix. The ground rule for buying potting soil is to give priority to soil mix that are light-weight and devoid of chemical fertilizers. It is best to use home-grown compost or organic compost from nursery garden. Mixing and preparing potting soil for growing herbs in pots is not tedious and can be easily prepared.

Transplanting herbs from the nursery to your container garden has to be done with care so that the plant recovers from the shock. Do not forget to add the organic compost to the loam if you are using loam. Use water sprinkler instead of a strong spray from a hose for watering plants. The soil should look damp which means the moisture is adequate.


It is important to consider replacing the herbs as they get older when their best years may have already passed by. For example, lavender should be replaced after about six years and thyme approximately after three years. The zonal climate will play an important role in nourishment of the perennials. While herbs that are accustomed to warmer climate may require protection from frost during winter, many others may become dormant. The roots will be alive and the plant will spring in action by spring and early summer to your surprise and delight. In nutshell, growing herbs in pots is fun and best if you are short of space.

Interested in container gardening? Check the following –
Best Container Types for Growing Herbs



Enchanting Italian Magic Herb Garden

If you ever get a chance to visit the ‘Enchanting Botanical Gardens of Italy’, there are at least thirty of the botanical gardens , you will almost every time find an exquisite Italian herb garden which is a feast for the eyes .These herb gardens contain mostly Mediterranean herbs which need less water and become dormant in summer. They are excellent in culinary and healing purposes.

The magic herbs including summer savory, garlic, tansy and borage are used in hundreds of Italian recipes for exquisite aromas every day and are believed to promote health and a sense of well-being. Here is a list of my favourite herbs that can be easily grown in your home Italian herb garden.

italian

Lavender:
Lavender is a perennial herb and cultivated in light sandy soil and full sun. The height varies from 10 to 18 inches. It likes sun and should be mulched in during winter for protection. You can sow fresh seeds in late summer or autumn or use cuttings in well drained soil. Harvest flowering stems just as flowers open, you can pick the leaves any-time. The dwarf variety can be used in hedge. Full grown plants have to be replaced once in five years. Lavender tea is made from the blossoms and is used as an antidepressant. Lavender is excellent in potpourri and can be used instead of rosemary while cooking chicken, flavoring vinegar and making fragrant stews.  You will definitely find lavender in an Italian herb garden if you take a leisure walk along the country side of Italy.

Borage:
Borage is an annual herb that grows in most soils, tolerates dry spells, and prefers full sun. The plant reaches two feet in height. The herb finds wide usage in treating bronchitis and rashes. The infusion is used as eyewash. Sow the borage seeds on site or in pots in April to July for summer flowers and in autumn for spring flowers. It does not respond favorably to transplanting hence plan the space for cultivating before-hand. Pick flowers and leaves to use in salads, yogurt, cheese, pickle and sandwiches. To use the fresh flowers, first remove the thorny back side and then rinse the flowers gently and pat them dry. A culinary borage delight is colorful and tasty combination of shrimp and avocado, with a lemon vinaigrette and borage flowers. It has thistle like hairs on the leaves but if you can tolerate them, the leaves give wonderful cucumber flavor and coolness to cold drinks. Borage is often used in Italian dishes and is must in an Italian herb garden.

Sage:
Common sage can be easily grown from seed. Sage is a semi-hardy perennial that grows to two feet and can be grown indoors if you have enough sun. Other varieties include broad leaf, clary, and pineapple sage. It is also a wonderful ingredient in veal and pork dishes, goes well with sausage, kebabs and tomatoes. When used in combination with peppermint, rosemary, and wood betony it provides an excellent headache remedy.

Rosemary:
Rosemary needs a sunny area with excellent drainage and should be protected from cold weather. Trimming the herb will maintain a healthy growth, generally it is recommended to prune the herb after flowering. Stems of one year old or more contain a good amount of oil, hence allow the stems to mature before you begin using them. Add very sparingly as rosemary can be overpowering. Used in a wide range of meat and poultry dishes, especially lamb, pork and chicken. Rosemary is also great for flavoring mashed potatoes and finds extensive usage in Italian dishes. It is a delight and should be grown in your home Italian herb garden.

Fennel:
Fennel still grows by the side of every road in Italy. Fennel herb prefers dry and sunny areas. It is a perennial that can reach four to six feet high in favorable climate. It is noted and famous for treating flatulence. It has a delicious sweet licorice scent and can replace Dill in recipes. Fennel helps to reduce the appetite preventing obesity and helps improve digestion. It is often used as a sedative for small children. It is also used for cancer patients during radiation and chemotherapy treatments.

Basil:
Basil prefers at least six to eight hours bright sunlight. Basil herb has to be saved from frost. Basil’s warm spicy essence is revered by the Orient and the Mediterranean chefs. Sliced tomatoes taste divine when topped with a sprinkle of olive oil and a basil chiffonade. Basil’s sharp flavor complements garlic and tomato based dishes well. It is used in Italian sauces, pesto blended vinegar and placed favorably in spicy Thai cuisine. It is an essential herb for an Italian herb garden.

The never ending list of healing plants remains to be explored fully, the time and investment on un-locking and utilizing their potential is close to minimal. The herb plant kingdom offers a cure to almost every kind of common ailment and usage is simple. The herb kingdom encompasses a wide range of healing properties and are even known to cure depression – a state of mind. You can use Lavender to wash and bathe relishing the unique fragrance or use olive oil with herb-infusions like chamomile to soothe, and render your skin supple and more beautiful. Or use the humble Italian bay-laurel as an astringent to aid digestion and prevent stomach disorders. You can certainly enhance your Italian herb garden and keep reaping the benefits of the herbs.

If you are planning to grow herbs “Check out” –
Growing Mediterranean Herbs


Processing And Using Herbs From Your Home Herb Garden

Use Fresh Herbs Grown From Your Own Home Herb Garden

Now that you have selected, planted, nurtured the chosen herbs delicately and observed them grow and flourish with satisfaction and pleasure, it is time to reap the rewards of your hard labour. Processing herbs for long duration up-keeping involves using vinegar, edible oils, drying or freezing the herbs. You can also make jelly, syrup and sweets. Another non culinary usage of herbs is in bath salts.


Did you ever imagine that growing a herb garden is easier than growing an elaborate fruit, flower or vegetable garden?

If you are not the type of person who can devote regular hours to your garden, this is for you, maintaining and planting a home herb garden is not an uphill task. Mundane it might seem, but the harvest over-rides the initial trouble and grilling of setting up the herb garden. The end product is better than what you get from grocery, fresh with aroma, delectable and tasty as ever.

First and foremost, you have to make an intelligent choice of the herbs that you plant and achieve success. You will be astonished that there is an enormous scope of available herbs and spices for culinary usage and home remedies. Basil, thyme, garlic, chamomile, dill, rosemary, and mint are good to start with your home herb garden.

Selecting an appropriate time to harvest herbs is critical. Sun, wind, rain can deprive the herbs from essential freshness, scent and oils. A calm and dry mid-summer morning is good to harvest the herbs that are fully grown. Note that harvesting does not mean removing the entire herb. Leave more than two third of the plant’s foliage to allow it to re-grow. Inspect the herb for any pests and damages, apply diligently available remedies for a sick herb preventing further damage. An effective solution for pests is to spray water, copper sulphate, horticultural oils, botanical sprays, insecticidal soap and diatomaceous earth. Often cutting off healthy plant and re-planting while destroying the rest can save herbs. Ladybugs and lacewings are excellent way of biological natural control. To prevent gophers devouring root, bulbs, use traps or pre-fabricated wire baskets from nurseries.

Use dry herbs for preparing wine, beverages and herbal tea. Cedar and white vinegars are very economical to make herbal vinegars at home. Bay leaf, rosemary, parsley, sage, and thyme give distinct flavours to the vinegar. Rosemary vinegar is used for hair rinse and hair wash as well as in cooking. Garlic vinegar is a good general antiseptic as well as excellent salad dressing and used for cold, cough. Put a good sized sprig of sage, oregano, terragon and chives in some white vinegar, wait for a couple of months and try it. You will love the fantastic flavour and the strong taste. Try making pickles, jams and syrups that act as tonic. Wide range of recipes are available, you can experiment and add some of your own.

For using fresh herbs straight out of the garden, use a sharp scissor or cutter. Use plenty of water to clean the herbs. Lukewarm and cold water are best to wash the mud. To drive away insects use two or three tablespoon salt in the water, increase or decrease as per the quantity of herbs. To dry the herbs for salad dressing, keep them for drying out by leaving them open and spread out or use a salad spinner.

$(‘body’).bind(‘copy paste cut drag drop’, function (e) {
e.preventDefault();
});


Useful Herb Garden Information

Neighbour’s Envy: Useful Herb Garden Information to Grow Your Own Herbs

Herbs are nature’s gift to mankind; they offer a pandora of remedies that is still not fully fathomed and known. Here is some valuable herb garden information that you can use while cultivating your own home herb garden.

Indoor Garden with Gourmet Herb Seed Kit

Indoor Garden with Gourmet Herb Seed Kit

The origin of herbs relate to the Latin word “herba,” which means “green crops”. Herbs are plants that are valued for flavour, aromas and medicinal properties. Herbs find various usages in cooking, medicine, spiritual purposes and even controlling pesticides.

Your Backyard Herb GardenYour Backyard Herb Garden: A Gardener's Guide to Growing Over 50 Herbs Plus How to Use Them in Cooking, Crafts, Companion Planting and MoreYour Backyard Herb Garden: A Gardener’s Guide to Growing Over 50 Herbs Plus How to Use Them in Cooking, Crafts, Companion Planting and More

The Cook’s Herb Garden
The Cook's Herb GardenThe Cook’s Herb Garden

The parts of the plant that can be used ranges widely from leaves, roots, flowers, seeds, and resin to barks. Grow your own herbs by gathering important and useful information on them in a matter of weeks and become a proud owner of a home herb garden.

While humanity has continuously engrossed in farming and agriculture for survival since the early ages, cultivating herbs for medicinal, visual and aesthetic appeal cannot be denied. Cultivating plants for the main purpose –providing food for the family during season and off-season when rains were scanty was the main goal. While accumulating and storing seeds for re-cultivating was researched, hybrid farming to grow healthy and resistant plants has also promised mankind a persistent yield of organic products.

Mini-Garden Stacker- Stackable / Hangable Self-Watering All Season Planter – Indoor / Outdoor Stacking Flower Pot-Flowers, Herbs, PlantsMini-Garden Stacker- Stackable / Hangable Self-Watering All Season Planter - Indoor / Outdoor Stacking Flower Pot-Flowers, Herbs, Plants, Garden, Indoor Gardening & More. Great Gift.
Mini-Garden Stacker- Stackable / Hangable Self-Watering All Season Planter – Indoor / Outdoor Stacking Flower Pot-Flowers, Herbs, Plants, Garden, Indoor Gardening & More. Great Gift

Nancy Janes P1360 12-inch Stacking Planters with Patented Flow through Watering System and Hanging Chain, Tuscany, Set of 3
Nancy Janes P1360 12-inch Stacking Planters with Patented Flow through Watering System and Hanging Chain, Tuscany, Set of 3
Nancy Janes P1360 12-inch Stacking Planters with Patented Flow through Watering System and Hanging Chain, Tuscany, Set of 3

Valuable Tips on Herb Garden Information for Novice Herb Gardener

A careful selection of your first herbs without rushing into ordering a bulk of the catalogue that supplements the season and the time of the year should be your first choice.

• It is no secret that a good and healthy herb garden has to stand on good soil. Feeding the soil is equivalent to feeding the herbs. Crushed leaves, grass clippings, organic foliage and home-made compost greatly enrich the soil. Your plants will never be happier.

Plan for outdoor and indoor herb gardening. The herb plants can be transplanted from indoors in pots as seedlings to outdoors in spring. However; remember that – not all herbs can transplant, plan to grow these herbs outdoors straightaway directly in your herb garden, eg Fennel, Anise, Dill and Coriander.

Florafelt Vertical Garden Kit 8-Pocket Living Wall – 12 in X 62 in (For Indoor or Outdoor Use, Includes Felt Wraps for Mess-free Gardening, Automatic Watering, Easy and Fun)Florafelt Vertical Garden Kit 8-Pocket Living Wall - 12 in X 62 in (For Indoor or Outdoor Use, Includes Felt Wraps for Mess-free Gardening, Automatic Watering, Easy and Fun)
Florafelt Vertical Garden Kit 8-Pocket Living Wall – 12 in X 62 in (For Indoor or Outdoor Use, Includes Felt Wraps for Mess-free Gardening, Automatic Watering, Easy and Fun)

Mr. Stacky Stacking Hydroponic Pots Tower – The Vertical Container Hydroponics Growing System to Grow Vegatables, Herbs, Strawberries, Peppers, and Much More
Mr. Stacky Stacking Hydroponic Pots Tower - The Vertical Container Hydroponics Growing System to Grow Vegatables, Herbs, Strawberries, Peppers, and Much More - Indoors or Outdoors - Terra Cotta Plastic Stackable Planters - Also Used in Aquaponic Systems - Comes with Easy to Use Gardening Instructionss
Mr. Stacky Stacking Hydroponic Pots Tower – The Vertical Container Hydroponics Growing System to Grow Vegatables, Herbs, Strawberries, Peppers, and Much More – Indoors or Outdoors – Terra Cotta Plastic Stackable Planters – Also Used in Aquaponic Systems – Comes with Easy to Use Gardening Instructions

• Egg shells are wonderful natural fertilizer used in organic farming. You can even add an eggshell to the coffee in the filter, and your morning coffee will be less bitter. The used coffee grounds, eggshell and bio-degradable filter are then readily available for the compost pile. Fill biodegradable eggshell halves with potting soil instead of using peat pots to start seedlings for the garden.

Whether you are growing culinary, medicinal or tea herbs and whether they are annual or perennial, they all need the same basic ingredients: three parts of garden soil, one part peat, compost or organic manure and one part sand. It’s that simple. Give your herbs a balanced soil and you have conquered the secret of producing healthy and long living herbs.

Cultivating your own kitchen herb garden is very satisfying way of getting a ready and fresh supply of culinary herbs. There are increasing numbers of different varieties of herbs that can grow with little care and can be a real money saver as well. Some of the best varieties are uncommon and are not available in the market, however growing them is simple and fun. Other varieties that are offered as plants are not the best to be had.

Complete Medicinal Herbal (Natural care)Complete Medicinal Herbal (Natural care)
Complete Medicinal Herbal (Natural care)

National Geographic Guide to Medicinal Herbs
National Geographic Guide to Medicinal Herbs: The World's Most Effective Healing Plants
National Geographic Guide to Medicinal Herbs: The World’s Most Effective Healing Plants