Homegrown herbs add color and amazing aromas to your household while providing the freshest flavors to your dishes. Thankfully, growing your own herbs does not require an expert’s green thumb and can be grown indoors or outdoors. Here are some of our favorite herbs to grow and tips for starting your own herbs.
Basil: Always best when fresh! Plant its seeds after the last frost when temperatures are warm. Leaves are ready to use when you see flowers start to appear and should be tossed in at the end of cooking to prevent heat damage.
Cilantro: Another annual herb, cilantro likes cool weather and can be planted in spring or late-summer. If grown indoors, find a sunny window to get its required 4 to 5 hours of sun a day. Toss the leaves in warm or cold salads or as a garnish to any dish.
Thyme: Be sure to buy a type of culinary thyme- French, lemon, or caraway. Thyme survives best in hot, sunny environments and does not require a lot of water. Add it to homemade soups and stews or use it to season meat and poultry.
Tips & Tricks
1. Add compost to the soil when planting in the ground, or use “potting mix” rather than “potting soil” for containers.
2. Most herbs require around 6 hours of sun each day. If grown indoors, find a sunny window or rotate the herb’s location.
3. Give them room to grow. Allow at least one foot in diameter for most herbs to grow. If using pots, it is best to give each herb their own space.
4. Check the moisture of the herb’s soil often. Let the top of the soil dry out before watering again.
5. When ready to harvest, cut the plant close to a leaf intersection to allow for new growth.
Happy herb harvesting!
–Chef Shannon, Nutritionist, TBK Southlake