5 Tips for Growing a Successful Indoor Herb Garden
Like many others, you have probably picked up a few new and unexpected hobbies during your new-found quarantine-free-time, but puzzles, Netflix, and virtual happy hours can only go so far– when you start to crave something a bit more “fulfilling” and make the nearly inevitable move to the dark side of houseplants and indoor gardening, we got you. Here are five tips on how to maintain a successful indoor herb garden.
Since herbs are typically grown outdoors, they rely on lots of light– usually around six to eight hours of direct sunlight daily. Believe it or not, the amount of sunlight your herbs are getting can even have an effect on the way they taste. There’s a slim chance you have a spot in your house that actually receives six to eight hours of direct sunlight, so you may want to invest in some artificial lights, or grow lights. Because you are growing your plants inside, you may need to leave the lights on a few hours longer than what is typically recommended for outdoor herbs.
Grow lights may seem like AN UNNECESSARY EXPENSE a more expensive alternative to just simply growing them outside, or even buying fresh herbs from the farmers market, fortunately, Money Gains is an excellent resource, primarily for those residing in Northern Ireland, but even if you aren’t, they still offer plenty of valuable information and energy-efficient, money-saving tips.
Almost any plant has to potential to get messy, and no one wants to clean muddy water off the windowsill. Ensuring your pots have proper drainage and sit in a saucer, plate, or bowl will keep your countertops and windowsills dry and mud-free.
Whether you decide to plant your herbs in a vintage vase, a handpainted flower pot, or a neat looking tin can, make sure it has adequate drainage holes or that there is enough room at the bottom of your pot to place a few rocks to keep the roots from sitting in water. Overwatering is an easy mistake to make, but proper drainage will help you to salvage your poor soggy plants and hopefully avoid potential root-rot.
Know Your Herbs
Before purchasing any seeds or plants, you may benefit from doing a little research and finding out which herbs will prosper indoors. Of course, there are plenty of ways you can supplement and mimic outdoor conditions, but if the plant won’t reproduce after pruning or cutting or isn’t hearty or durable enough to thrive inside, what little you are able to use from the plant may not be worth the time, money, and effort you’ll put into keeping it alive.
As a new plant owner you’re probably thinking that dirt is dirt, right? WRONG. There are many different types of soil, soil hybrids, and soil alternatives to choose from, and choosing the right one can be overwhelming. For instance, a cactus or succulent will do well in a soil specifically designed to drain faster and retain less moisture, as these plants do not need much water. Other plants, like bamboo or sage, will do just fine in plain water, and most will benefit from additional nutrients and fertilizers.
They’re called pests for a reason, and often you don’t know where they came from or how they got in until they’ve already wreaked havoc on your plant babies. Knowing the telltale signs of pests or diseases and how to help them recover can help you to save your indoor garden before it spreads throughout the rest of your plants.
One practice you may want to adopt early on in your plant-ownership is regularly wiping them down, not only does this allow you to clean off any dirt or dust, but it also gives you the perfect opportunity to inspect your plants and the soil they’re potted for anything out of the ordinary.
Aside from the usual, six-legged, microscopic pests, we must also be aware of the four-legged, furry ones. Certain plants and herbs can be toxic to cats and dogs, so be sure to read up and make sure everyone stays safe.
Starting your indoor herb garden can be a little daunting and different plants require different care, but luckily for you, websites like Hydro Blossom are ready to answer nearly any question you might have.
Good luck and happy planting!