Growing herbs indoors for fresh year-round use is fun, gratifying, and easy. Keep these on a kitchen windowsill to really up your dinner-making game. Add that just-picked taste to your meals by growing herbs indoors all year long. You won’t even need special lighting because these plants fare just fine in a bright window.
Growing Herbs Indoors
Use the smaller globe types of basil for indoor growing. Many of the larger types are too large and will cause space problems. Start basil from seeds and place the pots in a south-facing window; it likes lots of sun and warmth.
It’s a perennial – which means that it can live for a long period of time – that does best using the container gardening method. Place the pot in an east- or west-facing window, but be sure it does not get crowded. Bay needs air circulation to remain healthy.
Chives grow almost anywhere. Harvest them at the base (like cutting grass), no more than one-third of the bunch at a time. At the end of growing season, dig up a clump of chives from your garden and replant it in a pot. Leave the pot outside until the leaves die back. In early winter, move the pot to your coolest indoor spot (like your basement) for a few days. Then place it in your brightest window.
Your best bet is to start with a tip that has been cut from an outdoor oregano plant. Once you’ve then planted that tip in a pot, place it in a south-facing window. Fresh oregano is much milder than dried. Use it at the end of the cooking process so that its flavor is not lost.
You can start parsley from seeds or dig up a clump from your garden at the end of the season. Parsley likes full sun but will grow slowly in an east or west facing window. If you choose to start parsley from seed, soak it in warm water to crack the seed coat before sowing it.
Start with a cutting of rosemary and keep it in a moist soilless mix until it roots. It grows best in a south-facing window. Expect your kitchen to smell fresh throughout the cooler seasons thanks to the pungent scent of this herb – it acts like a natural air freshener!
Buy a starter plant or start it from cuttings off an established plant. Simply snip off the growing tips from a plant outdoors and stick them in a pot with good potting soil. Keep the cutting moist and it will root in a few weeks. It tolerates dry, indoor air well, but it needs the strong sun from a south-facing window.
You can start thyme indoors by either rooting a soft tip that cut from an outdoor plant or digging up and repotting the entire thing. Thyme likes full sun but will grow in an east or west facing window. Like rosemary and sage, it is easy to propagate from cuttings as well.
A dormant period in late fall or early winter is essential for tarragon to grow indoors. Pot a mature plant from your outdoor garden and leave it outside until the leaves die back. Bring it to your coolest indoor spot for a few days, then place it in a south-facing window for as much sun as possible. Feed well with a liquid fertilizer.