Growing herbs indoors can be an uplifting hobby when it’s dreary outside.
For homegrown flavor right at your fingertips, keep our indoor gardening tips in mind.
Don’t let winter weather put a damper on your culinary herb garden. Just grow your favorites indoors.
• Most herbs need five hours or more of bright light from a sunroom, overhead skylights, or a large sunny window.
• Supplement with overhead fluorescent lights if natural light is insufficient or if plants become leggy.
• For faster harvests, use established plants rather than seeds.
• Choose a 6-inch or larger container with drainage holes in the bottom. Larger pots produce bigger plants and therefore more foliage to harvest.
• Use a commercial potting mix that includes perlite, vermiculite or pumice for better drainage.
• Allow potting mix to dry slightly between waterings for most herbs; keep the soil slightly moist for basil, chives, mint and parsley.
• Starting in spring, feed plants with an organic liquid fertilizer every three to four weeks; feed every month or two if using organic fertilizer granules.
• Use a mild soapy water spray (about 1 tablespoon of dishwashing liquid to 1 gallon of water) or an organic insecticidal soap spray to control any pests.
Kris Wetherbee is a contributing editor who tends her herbs in western Oregon.
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