They say that a home without flowers isn’t a home at all and I can agree with that as almost everyone has some flowers in their household.
And really, there’s just something about flowers that warms up the whole interior and exterior of a home and it’s no wonder why growing them in pots is so popular.
But what about natural and fresh herbs that make every dish even more special? Or herbs which can be used to make aromatic oils and scents?
Can they be grown in a small pot?
Well, sure they can! I remember going to my grandmother’s house on spring breaks and she would always have some fresh basil, mint, and thyme in pots right outside her window.
Maybe that’s why today I love gardening so much.
Anyways, today we are going to take a look at 10 best herbs to grow in pots so you can always have fresh greens and don’t have to run to the store to buy those dried out commercial ones.
10 Herbs To Grow In Pots
Basil is one of the most popular homegrown herbs and it’s mainly because, to grow basil you just need a sunny windowsill, a container to put the well-drained soil and some seeds and you’re done.
It usually needs a 6-hour daily dose of sunlight, but if you want to grow your basil completely indoors you can replace sunlight with fluorescent lights which the herb will need to be exposed to for at least 10 hours a day.
As far as watering is concerned, you should keep the soil moist and never soggy because the roots can rot away pretty quickly.
Also, you want to use well-drained but nutrient-rich soil and your basic houseplant fertilizer with pH levels of between 6.0 and 7.5 to get the best results.
With just one basil plant you can get around ½ cups of basil each week which will certainly save you some money and also you’ll get a fresh and healthy herb to make any meal you make even more delicious.
Oregano is surely one of the most used spices in Italian cuisine and it has a strong, spicy flavor which brings to life every dish you put it in.
Also, wild oregano oil is used to treat sinus congestion and has a very potent and unpleasant taste but trust me, it works like a charm.
I’ve found that planting oregano in a light, well-drained soil has the best results and no additional fertilization is needed.
Oregano needs a whole day worth of sunshine to grow properly but if you want to keep it completely indoors then you have to make sure that the plant gets enough heat and light.
You shouldn’t overwater your oregano, but instead just water it when the soil feels dry.
Because oregano can grow up to two feet, you should consider replanting it in a bigger container or pot and putting it in your garden if you have one.
Because oregano is a perennial plant, you will have fresh oregano all year round and you won’t have to worry if it gets too cold because if it receives enough sunlight then it can survive even the harshest weather conditions.
Thyme is one of the easiest and best herbs to grow in a pot and it’s a great herb to use for a little bit of a savory flavor to your slow-cooked dishes.
Because it’s a perennial plant, thyme can withstand even cooler temperatures and that makes it a great herb to grow indoors or in your garden.
You should use well-drained soil to plant your thyme in, and also it should be around 6.0 to 8.0 pH levels to get the best results.
You can fertilize it with organic matter in the early spring if you want to, but it isn’t necessary.
Of course, sunlight is mandatory and if you don’t have a garden, then keep it near a window because thyme requires a warm and sunny environment.
As far as watering is concerned, you should only water it when the soil is completely dry.
Similar to thyme, rosemary is also a popular herb used in slow-cooked dishes and even roasts and also they go well together, no wonder that the British television series Rosemary and Thyme was so popular.
Anyways, similar to thyme, rosemary needs well-drained soil with a pH level of about 6.0 or 7.0 but surprisingly rosemary has been known to grow even in poor soil so fertilization is just personal preference.
Rosemary needs at least 6 – 8 hours of sunlight a day so if you are growing it indoors, be sure that its sunlight needs are met by supplementing natural sunlight with artificial lighting.
You should water rosemary only when it’s completely dry and also you should keep the soil damp and not too moist otherwise the plant won’t perform as well.
Side note: because rosemary deters bean parasites, it’s not a bad idea to plant it next to your beans if you have a garden.
Parsley is a really common herb used in all sorts of dishes such as soups, omelets, and even grilled steak so there’s no surprise why people often grow it in their garden instead of buying it in the shop.
It is a biennial herb meaning that it only comes back after two gardening seasons meaning that in the first year it produces leaves and the second year it goes to seeds.
Unlike the previous herbs we’ve mentioned, parsley should be planted in moist, well-turned soil and you should use rich compost early in the growing season to get the best results possible.
Surprisingly, parsley doesn’t need much sunlight to grow and it’s ideal for indoor growing because it does well in both sunny and part-sun environments.
As far as watering is concerned, it’s best to keep the soil moist but parsley is also very drought-tolerant and adaptable.
Cilantro is always mixed-up with parsley and it isn’t a surprise as both herbs look so similar but are two completely different plants.
The whole herb is edible and its leaves, stems, flowers, roots and even seeds are used in Asian, Mexican and Indian cuisine.
You should use well-drained soil that has a pH between 6.5 and 7.0 and you can use natural fertilizer for fertilization.
Because cilantro tends to bolt in high temperatures it’s not a bad idea to grow it indoors as long as it has enough sunlight.
Also, you should keep the soil moist and water it frequently for the best results.
If you have no gardening experience whatsoever, then you should start with chives as they are the easiest and one of the best herbs to grow in pots.
Chives go well all sorts of soups, they are pretty much essential for a potato salad and they also go well with omelets.
Also, the entire plant is edible so I’m sure that some of you vegans out there will figure out how to make delicious dishes out of whole chives.
There are three general rules of thumb when growing chives:
- You need well-drained soil and you should use just a little bit of organic fertilizer throughout the season.
- Chives only need about 6 hours of sunlight so they are ideal for growing indoors near a window.
- You need to water the soil frequently and have proper soil drainage.
Other than that, you’re pretty much set.
Mint has all kinds of uses from making tea, cocktails to even making peppermint oil which has various medical benefits and that’s why so many people prefer growing it themselves.
It is perennial and grows all year-round and can thrive in both warm and cold climates and should be planted in the spring, but it can also be planted in summer as long as you provide ample water.
You should use moist and rich soil with pH levels between 6.0 and 7.0 for best results and you can even cover the soil with mulch to keep it moist.
Mint doesn’t need that much sun, only about 5-6 hours of sunlight a day, but be sure to place it near a window if you are growing it indoors.
The only maintenance which mint requires is regular watering because it thrives in moist soil so you should keep the soil damp at all times, especially in the summertime.
Similar to mint, sage is grown for all kinds of purposes and is a great herb to have in your garden or indoors because it’s one of the few herbs that as its leaves grow larger the flavor is more intense so putting just a pinch of it will surely spice up your dish.
When it comes to planting sage, you should use well-drained, sandy and loamy soil with a pH level between 6.0 and 7.0. Also, you shouldn’t use too much fertilizer as the flavor might turn out less intense.
Sage needs lots of suns so be sure to place it near a window if you are planning to grow it indoors.
Sage is very drought-resistant and even if the leaves seem like they are wilted, just a little bit of water can spring the whole herb back to life, so you should wait for the soil to be completely dry and then water it thoroughly.
10. Lemon Balm
Last but not least we have lemon balm. It is commonly used in aromatherapy for reducing anxiety and stress but also for increasing appetite and reducing pain as well as in various dishes such as fruit salads and roasted chicken.
Because it’s a cousin of the mint herb, their requirements are similar, although lemon balm is more susceptible to bolting and drying out so you should keep it away from high temperatures.
You should plant it in moist and rich soil with pH levels between 6.0 and 7.0 and you can use some natural fertilizer to speed up the growing process.
The sun can be lemon balm’s best friend and also the worst enemy so you should keep it indoors near a window to prevent bolting.
Watering the lemon balm also requires some caution because you don’t want to drown it but you also want to keep the soil moist so you should implement proper water drainage to avoid any problems.
That’s about it when it comes to the best herbs to grow in pots and even though these herbs are our top picks, there are still dozen of herbs you can grow by yourself with minimum effort.
We hope that you will get inspired to try and grow some of these herbs and we would like you to share your success with us in the comments.
Good luck and happy gardening!