Getting Started with Growing Herbs at Home

Growing herbs at home is one of those things that many people just give up on. Mainly because herbs wither and die. But there are many reasons this happens, and getting to know each plant helps when growing. From the easiest ones to grow to the best for cooking, here are some tips.

Consider Pots or the Ground

There’s an age-old question going back to the dawn of man itself. Before we had a fire, we were asking, “Should you grow herbs in a pot or on the ground?” All herbs will flourish in the ground in their natural environment. But some herbs do better in a ground setting, and others will thrive in a pot. Ground-based perennial and woody herbs like rosemary grow best in the ground and can also help get rid of mosquitoes and other pests because of the intense aromas they give off.

Start with the Easiest when Growing Herbs at Home

Everyone’s home or garden is different, and that determines what herbs you can grow well. Most enjoy a garden, but not all of us have a green thumb. A survey in the UK (by found that around 36% of people grow herbs at home. This is because the British weather is excellent for certain easy herbs. Some of the easiest to get started with include mint, chives, and parsley because these tend to do well no matter the weather.

Meet the Herb Families

Different varieties of herbs, and there are many, come from different families. For example, herbs like marjoram, peppermint, and stevia are from the mint family. Families are essential when growing herbs on a higher level because you need to know the families for what you require.

Some herb families are easier to grow, and you can cut them as you need. Some of the easiest herbs to grow, such as chives, are from the onion (allium) family, as well as garlic.

Tips for Growing Herbs Indoors

Herbs can be grown inside or out in the garden. However, it can be hard to grow some indoors, and mistakes are often made. Try these tips for growing indoors if you have problems:

  • Pick the right herb plants that grow well indoors, such as basil, chives, and mint.
  • Use drainage containers that help keep soil at the proper moisture level.
  • Choose a sunny spot that provides plants of light for around six hours per day.
  • Try to get a feel for how much water the herbs need for the soil to be damp.
  • Harvest a little bit of the herbs at a time and cut back to encourage growth.

Soft herbs like basil, chives, and mint fare better indoors, while hard herbs like thyme and sage are better outside. Getting the water and sunlight right is also a big deal when growing inside.

Getting Started with Growing Herbs at Home

Provide Sun and Water as Needed

As mentioned, herbs need sunlight and water to thrive. But the thing is that some need more of one or the other or less. And this can be tricky to get right, especially when growing herbs indoors. Some hardy herbs, such as lavender, grow very well outdoors with less sun and colder climates, such as in England. Yet the herbs you will want to use the most if you cook need plenty of indirect or direct sunlight with varying amounts of water, so learn about these herbs.

Growing Herbs at Home is Great for Cooking

Cooking is a great way to eat healthier and better. Herbs are packed with vitamins and minerals and add sparkle to homemade dishes. What would Italian food be without basil? Around 37% of US citizens enjoy cooking more than three times per week. And having your own herbs on hand saves money and brings your weekday meals to life. Fresh herbs are best added as part of the cooking process to extract flavor, with some added near the end of cooking and as a garnish.

Invest in Some Useful Equipment

Growing your own herbs can be tricky. But there are some tools you can use to manage how well they grow. Suppose you live in an apartment and don’t have a garden. What do you do? LED herb planters offer an easy and convenient way to provide the light your herbs need, and some come with built-in drainage. Speaking of drainage, this can be tricky too. However, self-watering plant pots can contain up to three weeks of water that keeps the soil moist.


Consider whether you want to grow your plants in pots or in the garden to get started growing herbs at home. Growing indoors is best for soft herbs, and hard herbs do better outside. However, you can use LED planters and self-watering plant pots to keep herbs in good shape.

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Barb Webb. Founder and Editor of Rural Mom, is an the author of "Getting Laid" and "Getting Baked". A sustainable living expert nesting in Appalachian Kentucky, when she’s not chasing chickens around the farm or engaging in mock Jedi battles, she’s making tea and writing about country living and artisan culture.
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