Terracotta pots containing various types of edible herbs.

Planting an Indoor Herb Garden

Author Icon Jasmine Baker Jun 17 2021

If growing an outdoor herb garden isn’t an option for you, take your garden indoors! It can take up as little or as much room in your kitchen or living room as you like and by choosing the herbs you use most often, you can add the freshest ingredients to your dishes. With the right care, your garden can thrive year-round and you can benefit from fresh herbs even in the winter! Beloved contributor Jasmine Baker was kind enough to put together a small guide to help your indoor herb garden thrive!

What you’ll need

Choose your herbs

- Small herb plants are available in the produce sections of most grocery stores and in garden centres.

- Start with herbs that you cook with most often: rosemary, thyme, parsley, oregano, cilantro, basil, sage and mint are in heavy rotation in our home, and they all grow quite well indoors. Chives and tarragon are great options as well.


Choose your pot

- Choose a pot that is at least 1 inch in diameter bigger than your plant. I look for herb plants that are in small 3–4-inch pots and then choose a pot that is 5-6 inches in diameter.

- Choose pots that have a hole in the bottom and have a matching saucer. This helps with drainage and any accidental over-watering.

Choose a sunny spot

- Most herbs prefer a lot of sunlight. Choose a window that provides 6 – 8 hours of sunlight.

- Growth can slow in the winter months when there isn't much natural light. Grow lights can be a great option for indoor herbs.



- Start with a handful of rocks, enough to cover the bottom of your pot about 1 inch thick.

- Add an inch of potting soil on top of the rocks and add more soil slowly pressing the soil into the sides as you work your way up, creating a well that will fit your herb plan.

- Sprinkle a bit of fertilizer. Consult package instructions for exact amount.

- Remove plant from old, temporary container, gently loosening the roots so they can expand and flourish in their new home.

- Use your fingers to press the herb plant into the soil well you’ve created, pressing down gently to remove any air and get the plant snug into the pot/soil.

- Spoon in soil to fill in any gaps and cover the top with ¼ – ½ inch of fresh soil.

- Water thoroughly and immediately.

- Place in a sunny position. 


Don’t Over Water!

- Water when the soil looks and feels dry.

- Don’t overwater your herbs since soggy soil can cause root damage.

- I like to use a spray bottle to spritz the plant and the soil. This will keep it moist without overwatering.

- You can get moisture meters from most garden centers and plant stores. These allow you to poke the soil and to read the moisture levels.

Additional Tips:

- Once a month, fortify your plants with organic fertilizer. Don’t over fertilize as this can rob the plant of its aromatics and flavour.

- Don’t squeeze the plant in a planter that’s too small.

- If you have a large pot on hand, feel free to mix your herbs up in one pot.

- Some herbs need solitary confinement. Herbs like mint and coriander like to take over so they should always be planted on their own.

- For newbies, try herbs that are hearty and not too fussy: rosemary, thyme, oregano and mint are more forgiving.

- Remember to choose herbs that you like to eat. Pruning from the plants helps them to grow stronger and fuller. Herbs need to be used for them to thrive.

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Written By

Jasmine Baker

Event Producer + Recipe Developer

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