Not all gardening needs to be done outside. Creating a window sill herb garden is easy and creates a nice look for the kitchen or dining room – and you don’t have to walk far when your recipe calls for a few basil leaves. One of the most important part of growing your own herbs is that, in a case where grocery stores are shut down, or your food is limited in taste or textures, herbs can be a great way to add flavors and that little bit of extra “zing” to make a bland meal more appetizing.
Herbs tend to be hardy but each of them have their own requirements for growing well indoors. Here are a few of the more popular indoor herbs.
Let’s start with the obvious. Basil is a very popular herb and will grow incredibly well in a window sill garden. The main thing with basil is to make sure you put them in a south-facing window. These herbs love the sun!
There are a few steps required if you plan on growing chives indoors. First, you will need to take a handful from your outdoor garden at the end of the season. Leave them out until the leaves start dying back. Once winter rolls around, bring them into your basement or another cool, dark place. After a few days, they can come upstairs and be placed in the brightest window you have.
Your south facing windows are going to get crowded. Parsley is another herb that loves the sun and as such, your basil plant will need to share the light. If you don’t have the room, parsley will slowly grow in an east or west facing window. You can grow parsley from a seed or an existing shoot.
Bay is a perennial herb that tends to grow very well in small containers all year long. Bay often works well in a pot with an east or west-facing window. But please make sure your Bay does not get crowded by other herbs. Bay needs good air circulation to remain healthy.
Your best bet is to start with a tip cutting from an outdoor oregano plant. Place the pot in a south-facing window. Oregano is fairly easy to grow as long as it gets a sunny window and is pinched back to keep it bushy. Use the clippings in sauces and stews, or dry the sprigs for later.
Thyme is not a terribly difficult herb to grow. In outdoor gardens, Thyme is frequently used in xeriscaping or hot, dry places where other herbs or plants might have more trouble thriving. Thyme is a hardy herb, perfect for USDA zones 4 to 9, although it can be grown in Zone 10 in the winter months. Thyme requires consistent bright light and be sure it does not attract pests. Thyme is prone to whiteflies and mealy bugs. Use neem oil where necessary, being careful to follow label on the bottle.