All summer, you have been diligently planting, weeding, watering,
and finally harvesting herbs from your own garden. Your food is filled
with the delicious flavors that only home-grown herbs can provide.
No store bought herb can ever taste as delicious as those you pick
from your back yard. Alas, summer is now coming to an end. The days
are growing shorter, and the weather is feeling cooler. And you’re
getting ready to say good bye to that oh-so-fresh herbal taste in
But wait! Did you know that you can grow herbs indoors year round?
All you’ll need is a good light source, such as a grow light,
some seeds and cuttings, and potting soil. Indeed, it’s easy
and fulfilling to continue to grow your herbs indoors once the cold
What Should You Grow?
Certain herbs perform better indoors than others. All of the usual
suspects like rosemary, parsley, bay leaf, thyme, chives, oregano,
basil, dill and coriander can all be grown successfully indoors.
You can even grow mint and garlic! Basil, dill and coriander need
to be started from seeds, but rosemary and bay leaf can be rooted
Regardless of what herb you choose to grow indoors, you will need
a source of light for your plants. Most herbs need a minimum of 6
hours of direct sunlight a day, although there are always exceptions.
Rosemary, parsley and mint can suffice with less, but basil needs
16 hours of direct light a day to grow.
Where will you get that kind of light? Grow lights for plants are
also recommended for herbs. These are fluorescent lights specifically
designed to encourage plant growth. You can buy them separately or
purchase them as part of a kit, along with a plant stands. Plant
stands are an efficient way to monitor, feed, and care for all of
your herbs. By placing your herbs in a stand, you minimize dirt and
water throughout the house, and you can ensure that each of them
get the correct amount of light by using the grow light for your
Your grow light should be six to nine inches above your plants.
Grow lights do not give off enough heat to harm your plants, unlike
incandescent bulbs, which can burn.
The Important Herb Facts
Herbs prefer an indoor temperature of 55’F-70’F, much
like humans do. Indoor herbs, unlike their backyard counterparts,
will need to be fertilized about once a month. You can use a slow-release
fertilizer ‘stick’ designed specifically for herbs or
a fish emulsion.
In terms of watering, it’s important that your plants retain
sufficient moisture, but it’s equally important to make sure
your herbs don’t drown. Choose a pot that has good drainage,
as well as soil that also drains well. For soil, you can use good,
high-quality potting soil, but make sure to choose soil specifically
designed for edible herbs and vegetables. Otherwise, you can use
a mixture of 1 part good quality potting soil, 1 part sand and 1
A good rule of thumb is not to water your herbs until the top soil
is dry. Your herbs will appreciate a little misting of their leaves
here and there, and they may also appreciate better air circulation,
provided by you with a small fan. If you use a fan, be careful that
your herb’s soil does not dry out. Don’t forget to pot
your herbs in a slightly bigger pot than they require, and re-pot
them at intervals so that they do not get root-bound.
With grow lights, stands, and a passion for delicious flavor, you
can enjoy the bounty of fresh herbs year round.