What Containers to Use for Your Container Herb Garden
If you’ve insufficient space for even a small outside herb garden, a container herb garden is a good option. You can start one using yogurt or ice cream cartons or any old porcelain pots or containers you might not be using for other things (e.g old tea pots or chipped vegetable dishes). However, if you can, get hold of some terracotta pots. They are not pricey and will last much longer.
Choosing and Preparing your Preferred Container
When you start your container herb garden pick a container that’s big enough to hold four to five medium-size herb plants with a lot of space between each one. Fill it to within a small distance from the top with a suitable soil mixture that has the right consistency to promote root development and permit water drainage. Garden soil can be okay to use, but it’s a good deal safer to make up your own mixture by bringing together high-quality compost with a coarse/sandy material (such as Perlite). Use one portion of Perlite and two portions of compost and mix them together meticulously.
Planting out Your Chosen Container Herb Garden
Before you put the compost mixture into your container, ensure that it’s got a hole in the bottom for drainage and put some small stones or stony gravel over the hole to support drainage and avert soil loss.
For your first container herb garden I suggest that you purchase the herbs you want to grow from a local nursery. When you start planting herbs in your container leave sufficient distance between each plant to allow for growth. The recommended planting distances can vary from herb to herb because certain herbs can grow very large and stifle the smaller less vigorous ones as they develop.
Caring for Your Container Herb Garden
Generally herbs like plenty of sunlight and water, so you should water your herbs once per day; but avoid watering too much. Watering steadily leeches out nutrient material from the soil, and so you must compensate for this with extra fertilizer applied periodically throughout the growing season.
At the end of the season a lot of the herbs in your container herb garden will have grown into large plants. I recommend throwing these plants away in the autumn when you have harvested the seeds and leaves, and start again in the new growing season. On the other hand, as you become more experienced you might like to try making root and stem cuttings and gathering up herb seeds ready to sow at the start of the next year when you start your container herb garden once again.
Broaden Your Know-how of The Container Herb Garden
Throughout the season you can start using the fresh herbs you have grown in your cooking, in addition to appreciating the smell and aroma of them in your garden.
I hope you have found this article helpful, but bear in mind that there’s much more to learn about herbs, and finding out will increase the satisfaction you get growing them. I suggest that during the winter you carry out research to learn more about varieties and applications of herbs – and of course make plans for your next year’s container herb garden!
Written by Adam Gilpin
Adam has been an enthusiatic gardener for over twenty years. He takes a special interest in growing herbs and the history and uses of herbs.
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