One of my personal goals this year is to start my own mini-garden on my apartment patio. With space constraints, I have to be selective and really plan everything out.
The first item on my to-do list is how to create a herb garden. I dream of having a fresh variety that I can grab at anytime and throw into my favorite recipes. This is something I can start now when it is still cool outside, and they can be transplanted outside when the weather warms. First up was creating a container to hold my herbs. I decided to re-purpose a Fage Greek yogurt container that is a #5 plastic, and non-recyclable in my municipality.
- A hole punch or drill with a small bit
- Container with lid
- Small rocks
- Variety of Herb seeds
- Outdoor spray pant
- Gesso (optional)
- Clear Finish
The first step was to wash out the container and punch holes at the bottom of the container for drainage. I used a scrapbooking punch tool, but a drill with a small bit could also work. Spray the container with a layer of paint, I found that the packaging was still showing through and added a layer of Gesso over top to act as a primer. Finished up with a final layer of paint and allowed it to dry.
I lined the bottom of the container with rocks to help keep the soil from washing out of the container. Broken terra cota would also work for this. Then I pulled out the compost I have been working on over the winter from my mini-composter and added in some fresh mulch before putting it into the container.
Placing the seeds of my herb in the planter, I then covered them with an additional 1/4 inch of mulch before watering them thoroughly.
For a finishing touch, I used my Cricut and cut out the stencils for the herb's name to attach to the outside of container. Finished it off by applying a clear finish to waterproof the paper. I love that the Fage container lids are clear and double as the perfect drainage collector.
Some general tips on getting a herb garden started:
- The planters will need at least 6 hours of sunlight (or simulated sunlight) each day.
- Make sure they herbs are not planted outside until temperatures remain above 50°F.
- The soil needs to be able to drain water well, and should be watered at least once a week.
- Natural fertilizer is the best to use, in my case I used my own compost.
- Basil is one of the easiest herbs to grown from seed, and rosemary is one of the most difficult. I am going to try potting both from seed and see how they fair.
- Herbs should be trimmed back down if they start looking ratty or brown to help them regenerate.
- I am going to start my basil in a smaller pot, but will most likely transplant it into a larger planter because it has a larger root system.
- When in doubt, starter plants at local garden centers are a great alternative.
I will be checking back in with progress on my little herb garden and compliment it with some recipes that compliment them.