Indoor herb gardens not only provide fresh herbs at your fingertips, but also fill your home with fragrance and greenery. Learn how to grow herbs indoors, including what herbs to grow indoors, learn tips on care and lighting, and indoor herb garden ideas. Growing herbs indoors allows you to enjoy homegrown produce whether you’re short on garden space or just want to add a dash of green to your interior. For newbies, it can also serve as a low-stakes entry into more substantial edible gardening–all you need is a sunny window. It also makes cooking at home easy–whenever you need some herbs, just clip a few sprigs to use in a recipe or as a pretty garnish.
But before you pot up your first plant, ensure your success by following these surefire strategies, even if you don’t have a green thumb. Most herbs prefer a lot of sunlight. That means you’ll want to give your indoor herb garden at least six hours of sun per day to thrive. To maximize their exposure, place plants as close as possible to your brightest window–the bright light of a south-facing window is best. Avoid setting them in the center of a room or near a window with northern exposure–neither will offer enough light.
Growth may be slow in the winter when there isn’t much natural light. During those months, consider investing in a grow light or led light while you wait for spring to arrive. You’ll be surprised by how little water it takes to sustain a small herb. To make sure your plant grows, keep the soil consistently moist, but not waterlogged. A small watering can or a drizzle under the sink will suffice. If the leaves begin to wilt or turn yellow, scale back the water.
Indoor herb plants are not forever. The good news/bad news is that if you do it right, your herbs will eventually outgrow their containers and need more space. If you see roots coming out of the drainage holes, growth seems to have stalled or the plant starts to flop over, it’s time to transplant.
In most climates, perennial herbs such as lavender and mint can be started inside and moved into the ground after the threat of frost has passed. Annual herbs can be moved outdoors through the end of the growing season. When cold weather approaches, you can either bring the pots back indoors or leave them outside, but be sure to take cuttings before the first frost so you can start the whole indoor herb garden process over again.
Both annuals and perennials can be moved into larger pots within your home at any time; just keep them close to a light source. Good luck.