Top 5 Easiest Herbs to Grow Indoors Right NowOn January 12, 2020 by Vlad7 min read
Every good cook, from the top chefs to every grandma out there, loves cooking with fresh herbs. Nothing beats that freshly-picked taste, and you know it! If you’re looking to try your luck with gardening for the very first time, herbs are actually a great start as some of them are really easy to grow, and most of them can be grown in pots indoors without any trouble. To make your life easier we’ve put together a list of the best and easiest to grow herbs for your indoor garden.
In fact, that’s how I found my passion for gardening, by growing herbs on my window seal as a teenager. I remember I used to have mint, basil and oregano almost all year round and my mother loved the easy access to fresh herbs. Since then I’ve tried growing a lot more herbs so I have a pretty good idea of which required the least amount of care. The herbs I picked for this list are so easy to grow that anyone, even black-thumbs, can grow them.
Table of contents:
What you’ll need for planting herbs indoors
No matter which plant you decide on and try to grow, you’ll need the same things to make it happen. Or better said, the plant will need them, but you need to procure them. These things are: a pot, garden soil, water and sunlight.
So before you get started, make sure you can find a bright window seal in your home that you can place the pots on. This should, of course, be in a room temperature environment, so don’t use unheated rooms or place the pots directly above a heater.
Once you know where your herb garden will be, it’s time to get a pot that can fit in that space. The larger the pot the more herbs you can put in. Try to aim for something that’s at least 15cm (6 inches) tall, and don’t overdo it either. You’re growing a small aromatic bush, not a palm tree. You’ll also need to grab a bag of potting soil from your local store, no need to get fancy with this one, but don’t use soil from your back-yard if you’re not an experienced gardener. You’re looking for a loose, fluffy soil that’s recommended for seedlings or indoor pot plants.
All plants in this list are planted the same way too. Fill the pot with soil to the top and add some water to it to pre-moisten the soil. Make a small indent with your the tip of your finger in the middle of the pot, drop a seed and lightly cover it with soil. Add water right after planting and every few days after that – when you notice the soil is getting dry. Depending on what you choose to plant it might more or less for the seeds to sprout, but you should have something growing in under three weeks no matter what.
As an extra tip, I want to address something that I see a lot of inexperienced gardeners do wrong. Watering seedling (and most potted plants for that matter) should not be done from the top. You want to put the pot in a try and put water in that tray at the base of the pot, letting the soil absorb as much as it needs, and throwing away any excess water that was not absorbed in about 15 minutes or so.
Whenever I think of basil, I think of Italian cuisine. You can use basil for a tone of recipes from pizza to pesto or pasta because it’s just that good! Basil is also the easiest to grow the herb in my opinion. As long as it has access to sunlight and water, the seeds will sprout about 3 to 5 days and within two weeks your plant will start to look like basil.
Continue watering the plant every few days, allowing the soil to dry a bit after each watering. When your plants bigger, around the 3rd set of leaves, you can pinch its top off to force it to branch out. After that you can slowly start harvesting the tips of new branches, allowing it to recover in between harvests.
This is actually something a kid could do. So if you’re a parent and you’re looking for a nice gardening activity to do with your kid, why not teach him how to plant basil.
Cilantro is a super popular herb in Mexican cuisine. The trick with growing cilantro is overseeding and planting ahead. Let me explain.
Unlike basil, cilantro doesn’t branch out and become a bush from a single plant. But planting multiple seeds in a pot will sprout up a healthy thick cilantro bush. However, after harvesting a few times, the plants will die back, so it’s wise to always have a fresh batch seeded as soon as the first one starts to grow. This way you can have a constant supply of fresh cilantro on your kitchen window, in various stages of growth.
This is what makes growing cilantro so easy. Even if you mess up a batch, you just need to add more seeds and more cilantro will soon pop-up. You should place this one in a bright window but keep it away from heat, cilantro prefers cooler temperatures.
Moving up the ladder of how hard these herbs are to look after, my next recommendation is sage. Although not as popular as Basil or other herbs, sage has an amazing aroma that can be used for cooking and it can also be dried and used to make tea. It is, however, slower to grow and needs good care in the first few weeks of its life. If you don’t want to try your luck with growing this from seed, you can find potted seedlings for sale and get started like that.
But, once established, sage is really easy to care for and it’s quick to let you know when it needs water by wilting its leaves. Sage also grows as a bush so you if you plan to plant it from seed be sure to thin out the seedlings after they sprout and only leave one or two plants in each pot. After the plant gets bigger you can start pinching its tops off, just like you would for basil.
Oregano is a great herb to have in your kitchen. It looks and smells amazing and it’s used in a myriad of recipes. Growing it from seed required a lot of patience as it takes one to two weeks to sprout and around 3 months to reach maturity. Since plants are most vulnerable when they are young, oregano will require you to pay extra attention to it for this three month period to ensure a healthy plant.
When planting oregano, overseed your pot with up to 20 seeds, as not all of them will sprout. Watch the ambient temperature as well, this plant needs warm temperatures to grow well.
Rosemary will also take a long time to germinate. You should aim for 3-4 seeds for each pot and depending on how many of them sprout, thin them down to one or two plants per container. The room temperature has to be above 21C (70F) for Rosemary to germinate and it might take up to three months before you start seeing the seedling pop out, so be patient.