If you love the idea of growing your own herb garden, but live in an apartment with six floors between you and the soil, take heart. You don’t need a house in the country or access to acres of land (or any land at all, for that matter) to grow fresh herbs year round. The simple solution? An urban garden!
The Urban Herb Garden
Fresh herbs add flavor and flair to your cooking for a fraction of the price of a grocery store. They also have the added benefit of making your kitchen smell great!
Planting your indoor urban garden: First, choose the types of herbs you’d like to grow. Keep in mind that most herbs thrive by a sunny window where the temperature stays a consistent 65-70 degrees (meaning that if you’re comfortable, they’re likely comfortable). The exception to the rule is basil, which is happier in slightly warmer climates.
Plant your herbs in containers with good drainage holes. You can also add a little gravel or a few small stones to the bottom of the container before filling it with soil.
Caring for your herbs: Make sure the plants get at least five hours of good sunlight every day (but watch that they don’t actually touch the window, which could get too hot or cold and damage sensitive leaves). Water when the soil feels dry to the touch just below the surface, and always in the morning.
Harvesting (the fun part!): The good news is that the more you trim them, the more flavorful and abundant your herbs in your urban garden will become. If you find that the plants are growing faster than you can use them, try either cutting and hanging them to dry or chopping them up and freezing them in ice cube trays with a little water—that way you’ll have cubes of fresh herbs on hand to throw in the pan whenever you need them!)
Another option: If growing fresh herbs in your kitchen sounds great in theory, but you’d rather not have to get your hands dirty, there’s always The Smart Herb Garden by the company Click and Grow. Using specially developed “Smart Soil” and built-in sensors, this innovative system ensures that plants receive the optimal mixture of water, oxygen, and nutrients. Just plug it in, add water, and the urban garden will take care of the rest.
However (and wherever) your garden grows, you’ll be able to enjoy fresh herbs all year round.