Herb Gardening in Your Apartment
If you love to cook, an indoor herb garden can be a great addition to your apartment, and you might be surprised at how easy they are to start and maintain. If you have at least one sunny windowsill, a planter and some herb seeds, then you've got the basics needed for an indoor herb garden.
A Traditional Herb Garden
There are a actually a couple of different methods you can use for creating the herb garden. One way is to fill a planter with good potting soil and plant the herb seeds of your choice. Place the planter in front of a window with plenty of natural sunlight. Ideally, the window you choose should get at least six hours of sunlight per day and not be too hot in the afternoon. Southern exposure is best. If your apartment has a spot like this, you're good to go! Pick up a bag of potting soil, the herb seeds of your choice, and water as needed.
The Hydroponic Method
However, if like many apartment residents you just don't have the ideal conditions for an indoor herb garden, don't despair; you can go hydroponic! A hydroponic kit is a no-soil setup that utilizes liquefied nourishment instead of soil as well as special lights to facilitate the growth of plants quickly. Since herbs are some of the most popular plants grown in this sort of system, it's relatively easy to procure them from hydroponic retailers offering products geared toward indoor herb gardens.
Regardless of your choice, the three main things needed for an herb garden are good light, consistent watering and the ample nourishment.
Indoor Herb Garden Tips
To increase your chances of a successful and thriving herb garden, keep these tips in mind:
- Choose healthy starter plants or grow your own from seed. Inspect any plants you are considering before bringing them home. Bypass any that show signs of disease or insect activity. If it looks even a little off, pass on it!
- Make sure each plant has plenty of room. Check seed packets for spacing recommendations.
- Water plants regularly and make sure pots drain after watering. Stagnant water can be very harmful to plants and cause the roots to rot.
- Go easy on fertilizer; most herbs actually like more challenging soil conditions.
- If possible, turn pots regularly to keep them growing evenly on all sides.
- Wait until plants are at least 6 inches in height before harvesting.
- Don't harvest more than one-fourth of a plant at any one time. After clipping, wait for that amount of the plant to grow back before clipping again. If there are certain types of herbs you know you'll be using a lot of in your kitchen, plant several of them so that you can rotate your harvest.
Follow these basic steps, and you'll be well on your way to having a thriving indoor herb garden! The herbs will be suitable for use in your cooking, your home craft projects or wherever fresh herbs are called for.