Kitchen Gardening: Creating Your Own Indoor Herb Garden

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There’s nothing better than having fresh herbs to cook with. But they’re pretty expensive: a small bunch of basil can run as much as three dollars, and other herbs can be just as pricey. There’s a quick and easy solution for amateur chefs who want access to fresh herbs all the time: grow your own. Growing herbs doesn’t require a green thumb or any particular gardening skills. All you really need to know is which herbs you want to grow and where you want to grow them.

Gathering your tools
This is a great project for apartment dwellers, since you can grow small pots of herbs almost anywhere in your house. You can also grow herbs in a large planter and make them part of your apartment’s décor. You’ll need potting mix (make sure it’s soilless), planting pots, and a window with enough light to ensure your herbs get plenty of sunshine. Because some herbs are toxic to pets, be sure to keep your herbs out of reach. If you need more information, use online education resources to help you get started.

Shopping for green
Supermarkets are carrying fresh herbs in both small clamshell containers, and in larger bunches. Supermarket herbs don’t tend to grow very well if they’re planted, so go to your local gardening store and get seeds or starter plants. Herbs like basil grow quickly and happily, as long as they have plenty of light. Herbs like rosemary, thyme and oregano are woodsy plants, but thyme and oregano need plenty of direct sunlight, while rosemary needs only direct sunlight.

Some herbs take little or no effort to maintain. For lemongrass, growing it is simple: you don’t need a fancy pot or potting mix. Just trim a stalk and keep it in fresh water, and it’ll sprout on its own. Mint is almost embarrassingly easy to grow—it’s a hearty plant that takes serious effort to kill. If you have cats, however, keep your mint in a place your kitties can’t reach: catnip is in the mint family, and your cat may mistake it for a treat.

Enjoying your harvest
One of the best things about having an indoor herb garden is the fabulous scents that will envelope your house: the sweetness of basil and the fresh sharpness of rosemary will waft through your kitchen and serve as a natural air freshener.

You can also use your herbs for more than just cooking: rosemary makes an effective tea for upset stomachs. It’s also an astringent that can be used for skin care. Basil is high in antioxidants, and can be brewed into a tea to help fight off winter sniffles. Tea made from fresh oregano can ease a cough, and can soothe muscle aches when added to bath water.

The herbs discussed above are the most common herbs grown in indoor gardens, but there are dozens to choose from. Growing your own fresh herbs gives you a wonderful way to spice up your cooking, an alternative to traditional remedies for mild common ailments, and a beautiful decoration for your home.

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Ty Cobb has 3 articles online and 1 fans

Shar Mint is an avid blogger and loves to shop!  She can easily be found online or at the local mall.

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Kitchen Gardening: Creating Your Own Indoor Herb Garden

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This article was published on 2011/08/03