The Home, Outdoor & On-the-Go

Getting Started with Small Space Herb Gardening

You have little, or perhaps no, outdoor space but yet your green thumb is starting to itch, dying to get in the dirt. 

Not to fear, there are many ways to bring fresh plants and herbs to your small space or patio. With only a few tips and tools, your small space herb garden can provide you all the benefits of a larger kitchen garden with half the work and time needed. That sounds like a win-win to me!

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My first apartment out of college was in a complex set around two man-made lakes, or ponds might be a better representation of the truth. The view from the small patio was amazing, my boyfriend at the time {now my husband} and I would sit out at our small little table at night with our drinks and grill dinner. It was on this small patio I found my love of container gardening. I bought several containers to rest on the ledge and a few others to group together on the ground. My thumb was pale green at the time - I was just getting started.

Whether your thumb is currently pale green or has fully matured into a full lush forest green you may find yourself limited to a small space but ready for garden containers full of herbs. I am here to tell you it is not only possible, but easier than you think to get started with your own herb garden.

Personally, when I have the opportunity, I always mix herbs and flowers for small space gardening - as long as they have the same water and light requirements they will be happy together and more fun to look at too. So go ahead and grab all your favorites at the local garden center, soil and let's get started!

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Indoor Small Space Herb Gardening

If the only space you have for a herb garden is your windowsill, the clean modern look of Rosti Mepal Hydro Herb Pot self-watering herb containers are ideal. Simply purchase your organic herbs from your local market or nursery and drop them in!

The ingenious folks at Rosti Mepal have provided the kit with an easy to install self watering method so all you need to do is fill the bottom reservoir with water, slip the cotton cord over the pin, insert it in the base of your herb pot and thread it back into the water reservoir. No additional soil needed! Simply place the chic herb container on a sunny window sill and check the water level every few days until you know how much water the herb requires - then you should be able to go to once per week.

Perfect for busy homeowners who travel or when you want to grow fresh herbs indoors during the cooler months. 

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Outdoor Small Space Herb Gardening

Ready to take your garden skills outdoors? Just because you have a small patio or balcony that is no excuse for not having fresh herbs ready to cut and bring into the kitchen. I am in love with this collection of Iron Garden Planters from Creative Co-Op. Not only are they a super chic addition to your small space patio garden, the bases easily screw in for the spring and summer and then can be removed for winter cleaning and storing - ideal for those with limited storage space.

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When planting larger garden containers, you may want to fill the bottom with stones or broken clay pots to allow proper water drainage - just like humans, herb roots don’t like to have wet feet! A one to two-inch layer will do the job.

Once the drainage is taken care of, add your organic garden soil to the container to fill it about half the way up. Yes - organic soil does make a difference and is important here. If you plan to consume or cook with the fresh herbs from your garden look for organic soil at the nursery.

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Begin to add your larger plants in first - this is where I like to bring in flowers like geranium to add height and flower blooms to a small space garden - then fill in smaller herbs around and below them. Be sure to allow space for the herbs to grow into their new garden container, before you know it they will be spilling over the edges!

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Fill in with soil using a small spade or Soil Scoop from Garden Works - if you listen to only one piece of my advice on gardening, please make it purchasing this spade - it is a MUST have in your gardening bag. I have had one for years and it is my go-to garden tool. The shape is perfect for scooping and adding soil to containers of all sizes without making a huge mess. The serrated edges also make quick work of digging into containers when removing mature plants.

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Once all your plants are in place, give them a fresh drink of water. OXO has created an Outdoor Pour + Store Watering Can whose arm rotates in for small space storage AND easily fits into your sink basin for filling! Brilliant! Available in 3 colors, it is another small space gardening tool you will fall in love with.

No matter if your small space herb garden grows inside or outside, within a few short days or weeks - depending on their original size - your fresh herb garden will be mature enough for you clip a few bits off and get cooking. Luckily Ball Culinary 5 Blade Herb Scissors makes it a breeze to cut your herbs and quickly add them to recipes.

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The five blade system cuts through leaves and tender stems - use them to cut one herb at a time or to quickly chop a variety of herbs to add to salad, soup and herb-based cocktails.

As you can see, there is no longer any reason to delay creating your own small space herb garden, with the right containers and a few gardening tools you will be on your way to growing and cooking with fresh herbs every day.

So get growing!

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