When you find yourself cooking with plenty of fresh herbs, it might be useful for you to start your own garden.
If you can keep a houseplant alive, you can sustain a herb garden.
It is not as hard as it sounds. All you need are the right pots, materials, and a plan. So whether you are a home cook or a serious foodie, growing your own herbs can be beneficial.
We spoke to Renshia Manuel who is the founder of Growbox, a social entrepreneurship company that manufactures portable grow boxes made from recycled pallets for people living in disadvantaged areas to grow vegetables sustainably, on how you can grow your own herbs at home.
Manuel said herb gardening can inspire you to make better choices about what you put on your plate. She said when you grow your own herbs, you savour it more because of the effort it took to get it to the table.
Manuel’s tips on how to grow your fresh herbs at home:
Use small pots or containers with drainage holes so that excess water will be able to drain. This would ensure that they are also easier to handle and can be moved for more favourable weather conditions or lighting positions (for instance, better sunlight).
Select your herbs
Choose herbs that you use regularly.
Forget seeds, use seedlings.
Unless you are an experienced gardener, use seedlings instead of seeds. This will save you two to three weeks of grow time and increase your chances of a successful harvest.
Get the right soil
When it is time to plant, use potting soil - not garden soil. Potting soil drains water well, whereas garden soil does not. The former is lighter and porous, while the latter is dense and traps (or blocks) moisture inside containers.
Care and harvesting
It takes constant, regular care for herbs to flourish. That means you must water them on a consistent schedule. Use a trigger sprayer for smaller plants. This way the soil will stay moist, and you can just spray the soil as needed. You will need to harvest them often, too, since this primes them for new growth.
Larger herb plants can also be harvested and be stored in dry form.