Growing Indoor Herbs

Growing indoor herbs through out the winter can be so refreshing and keep your green thumb in shape.

Many herbs lend themselves to an indoor garden. I like to grow my favorite herbs for cooking and my herbal teas that I use in the winter for soothing a sore throat or cough.

If you have a nice sunny window or porch you are ready to start planting, but most of us don’t have that much sunny space. I built my indoor grow lights into a set of shelving I bought at Ikea.

I attached the shelving to the wall to keep it stable. The shelves are adjustable and a 4 foot shop light fits on to the shelves. If you aren’t that handy there are several good grow light setups you can purchase for growing indoor herbs.

Growing Indoor Herbs

Sage (Salvia officinalis); parts used: Leaves. Good for indigestion, stimulant, astringent and relieves heartburn. Sage has been used effectively for throat infections, dental abscesses, infected gums and mouth ulcers. Use a tea infused as a mouthwash and gargle for sore throats and inflamed tonsils. Sage is particularly potent against Staphylococcus. And you thought it was only good for flavoring stuffing.

Sage is a great perennial as far north as zone 4. Grow some indoors for fresh leaves to add to your cooking and teas. Keep the plant trimmed back to promote more growth. When the plant gets to big for your indoor garden plant your sage outside in the spring.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis); parts used: Leaves. Antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, stimulant and a tonic. Not only good for flavoring your favorite dishes rosemary is good for headaches and sore throats. Rosemary may also promote memory function by increasing blood flow to the brain. Add the leaves to your next cup of herbal tea.

Rosemary cannot tolerate going dry so careful when watering. Don’t water too much but don’t let the plant go dry. Mist the leaves during the winter to add some humidity. Trim back branches when the plant gets to big. Rosemary can be planted outside in the spring. Take branch cuttings in the summer to start a new plants for indoor.

Chive (Allium schoenoprasum ); parts used: leaves. Easy to grow, chives do need to be germinated in the dark so have patience and you will be rewarded. Clip the leaves to use as a garnish for potatoes and in salads. Chives will keep growing and they do well if you keep them trimmed in your indoor pots. Once chives are established you can divide them and plants some outside to keep you indoor pots under control.

Peppermint, Mints(Mentha piperita); parts used: Leaves. Great for teas and savory dishes. Mints are full of nutrients. High in calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, selenium, potassium, sodium, iron, manganese, vitamin C, silicon and zinc.

Mints are great for growing indoor herbs; they are prolific and can handle being trimmed back. Mint grown from seeds do not always grow true. Pick up a start from your local nursery or a cutting from the herb garden.

Thyme (thymus vulgaris); parts used: Leaves, flowers. The thymol in thyme has antibacterial, antiseptic is and antioxidant and has expectorant properties. Useful in coughs, colds and flu. Strengthens the lungs.

Thyme comes in so many varieties you choose which one best suits you. Lemon thyme makes good herbal vinegar. Thyme grows well from seed. Keep moist until germination.  Keep thyme trimmed to keep it compact.

Parsley (Petroselinum crispum); parts used: leaves. Parsley is rich in vitamin C, A and Iron. Parsley can be a challenge to germinate taking 4 to 6 weeks. Buying plants from the nursery is easier.

Oregano (Origanum vulgare ); parts used: leaves. I grow oregano outside I in my garden as well as indoors. I use this all winter in my spaghetti and for pizzas. I love growing my own and oregano is very easy to grow from seed. Keep moist until germinated. Oregano is a member of the mint family and it spreads very quickly. 

Basil (Ocimum basilicum ); parts used: leaves. Basil is one of the best herbs for growing indoors. Basil is the queen of herbs. There are lots of choices in varieties; lemon, Thai and Holy basil are a few of the varieties available. 

Dill (Anethum graveolens) parts used: leaves, seeds and stalks. Dill grows to 24 to 36 inches but do not let this discourage you from growing dill indoors. Dill leaves are potent and wonderful in salads and a great way to add freshness to any dish all year. Dill is easy to grow from seed. Keep the soil moist until germination.

Growing indoor herbs require sunshine of at least 6 to 8 hours a day. If you have a sunny window this should take care of the light needed for the plants.

If you don’t have a sunny window you can increase the light needed for the plants by using some indoor lightning to make up the rest of the light needed each day.

Enjoy the fun of growing indoor herbs!

› Indoor Herb Garden