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How To Start a Herb Garden in a Small Space

Taylor Machuca-Koniw
How To Start a Herb Garden in a Small Space

Being able to pick your own herbs from your very own herb garden has to be one of the most satisfying things in life. From picking a couple of mint leaves to toss in a fresh salad or snipping a twig of rosemary for your Sunday roast, having access to fresh herbs on your doorstep is a cook’s dream.

You don’t need a lot of space to grow your own herbs, either. In fact, a herb garden is one of the most versatile when it comes to planting in a small garden. Whether you’re short on backyard space or have a tiny courtyard or no backyard at all – there is a creative way to grow herbs all year long.

Here are some of the ways you can grow herbs in a small garden.

Assess your space

Prior to starting your herb garden, you need to figure out where it is that you can grow your herbs. Do you have a spare patch of soil in your garden or perhaps you have a balcony that can serve as a dedicated herb garden? You might have no garden space at all, in which case, you can grow herbs indoors. Whatever space you decide on, make sure that it has suitable conditions for growing herbs. Herbs need a fair amount of sunlight, good drainage, and regular water. As long as your herb garden is growing in a space that gets around 4 hours of sunlight per day, it will most likely do well.

Choosing your herbs

You can find most herbs at your local garden store, nursery, or farmer’s market. When you’re just starting a herb garden, it’s a good idea to select herbs that you cook with regularly so as to get the most out of your garden. Some great herb choices include:

  • Mint
  • Rosemary
  • Thyme
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Chives
  • Basil
  • Micro herbs

These herbs work well either in pots, planters, or containers – making them easy to grow in all types of small spaces, from outdoor patios to windowsills. 

Creating your herb garden - solutions for small spaces

There are a couple of ways you can grow a herb garden in a small area.

1. Growing herbs indoors

If you have zero outdoor space or just like the idea of having fresh and fragrant herbs to pick whenever you please, then you might want to grow an indoor herb garden. If you choose to grow herbs indoors, you want to ensure that the containers they are planted in have holes for good drainage. You can choose herb containers or even get creative with old jars or tins. When it comes to positioning your herb garden, next to a window is best so that they get enough sunlight. You may want to position your herb containers on a windowsill or on a shelf or even on a wall-hanging planter for a vertical indoor herb garden that is both functional and visually pleasing. One bonus to growing herbs indoors is that they will grow all year round.

2. Growing herbs on a patio or balcony

If you’re growing herbs on a patio or balcony, then your best solution is to grow your herbs in pots or vertically using a vertical wall-hanging planter or even a multilevel plant stand. Balconies are also a great spot to place a mini hot house in which you can store your herbs in containers.

3. Growing herbs in a small outdoor space

If you do have some outdoor garden space, you can choose to plant your herbs directly in a dedicated patch of soil or in a planter box. Just make sure that the area gets enough sunlight and that the planter box and soil have good drainage.

Taking care of your herb garden

Herbs are generally quite hardy and are pretty easy to grow. Once planted and established, you only need to ensure your herbs are getting enough sunlight. Herbs often do suffer from too much water, so be careful not to overwater them. Generally, watering herbs once a week is enough to keep them happy.

Herbs grow best in well-draining soil that is rich in nutrients. For this reason, as part of your seasonal garden care, you should add some top-quality organic matter such as an organic fertiliser to support growth.

When it comes time to harvest your herbs never pick or cut more than one-third of the plant at any given time. Your herbs will grow and flourish if you trim them regularly. Just be sure that your herbs have fully matured before you harvest them for the first time.

As you can see, there are many ways to grow a herb garden in a small space. Most herbs do well when grown in containers, making it easy for home gardeners to grow their favourite herbs indoors. For herb gardens grown outside, you can keep them contained in a small space or pot and they will grow just fine.

Taylor Machuca-Koniw
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