10 Herbs You Can Grow Indoors
Growing Your Own Herbs is Easy and Delicious!
Herbs are known for their culinary, medicinal and relaxation properties. They give flavor to food and provide numerous health benefits. However, not many people can manage to have fresh herbs throughout the year and they use dried ones. This is mainly due to the climate. Fortunately, you can grow your own herbs indoors and have a fresh supply all year long. Fresh herbs are rich in nutrients, color, and flavor. Here’s how to grow herbs indoors.
Water-grown herbs are just as flavorsome as those you grow in the garden. You don’t have to mess with soil or worry about regular watering or changing seasons.
Most herbs will be happy growing in water, but those propagated from cuttings are easier to start in water. Seed-grown annuals like cilantro, mustard, and dill are a bit tricky because you need to sow the seeds in soil or some other medium and then transfer the seedlings to water. Soil to water transition is not impossible, but it may not always work out because soil-grown roots are a bit different from water roots.
GROWING HERBS INDOORS
The process of growing plants indoors in water is known as hydroponics. For a simple herb stand in the kitchen, you can root herb cuttings in plain water in glass bottles. Avoid using chlorinated water directly as the bleaching chemical is not exactly friendly to plant tissues. Tap water that has been left to air overnight is fine, so is stored rainwater. Spring water or well water is the best because it has some amount of dissolved minerals that may be of use to plants.
As for the container, mason jars or any other glass bottles will do, even plastic bottles. Roots generally like to grow away from light, so colored bottles, especially amber colored ones are best. You can just wrap a piece of paper around the bottle to keep the root zone in the dark. This will even prevent algal growth on the container walls and on the root surface. Algae do not adversely affect plant growth, but they make the bottles look untidy.
Narrow-mouthed containers have an advantage: they can support the cuttings and keep them nearly upright. However, the mouth of the container shouldn’t be too narrow or tight-fitting around the cutting. The roots have to breathe, and the mouth of the container should allow free movement of air.
If you’re using a wide-mouthed container, you have the option of covering the top with nylon or wire netting. Insert the cuttings through the holes, and that will offer some support to the cuttings. Another advantage, especially in warmer areas, is that the netting prevents mosquitoes from laying eggs in the water and multiplying.
Soft cuttings are pretty quick to root in water. You don’t need to use any rooting hormones. If you have some herbs growing in the garden, snip off 6-inch sections from growing tips and put them in the water-filled containers. The best part of growing herbs from cuttings is that you can use the ones you get from the supermarket. Just wash them in plain water and cut off the lower portion.
Remove lower leaves from cuttings and trim the lower tips close to the nodes from where the roots arise. When they are inserted into the bottles, there shouldn’t be any leaves touching the water. They can rot easily and spoil the water, as they do in flower vases.
Woody cuttings like rosemary may take longer to root, so be patient. Change the water once a week without disturbing the cuttings. Once the roots start growing, usually between 2-6 weeks, water changes may not be necessary.
If you have willow trees in the garden, you can steep some branches in warm water overnight to make a natural rooting hormone mix. Place the cuttings in the infusion to encourage rooting. Alternately, rooting hormone powder can be used.
10 Herbs You Can Grow Indoors
You can easily grow basil indoors. It is packed with antioxidant, antibiotic, antifungal, and antiviral properties and it provides numerous benefits. Simply, cut off the stem you want to root before the parent plant flowers.
2. Lemon Balm
This herb is known for its fresh smell, which keeps the mosquitos and insects away. You should pick several cuttings in spring or fall and put them in water in a bright place. Lemon balm can help digestion and reduce anxiety. Bear in mind that you should change the water once a week.
The process of growing oregano is similar to that of basil. You should take fresh oregano cuttings in water and pinch the growing tips as it grows. It has various health benefits which come as a result of its antibacterial, antiviral, antifungal, and antioxidant properties.
This is probably the easiest herb you can grow indoors. All you should do is place some fresh peppermint cuttings in water. You can use it in your salads and desserts. It will soothe bowel syndrome and reduce the stress levels. Moreover, you will be protected from spiders and mice as they don’t like the smell.
Its thick stems will take a while to grow roots and should be placed in a sunny spot. You can use it in soups, as a garnish or meat rub. It can improve the brain health, boost memory, and promote hair growth.
You can grow your own sage indoors by taking a few sprigs in the spring from an outdoor plant and placing them in shallow water. Make sure you don’t let the leaves touch the water. This amazing herb will help you with anxiety, and it will improve the memory.
This herb requires the same growing process as peppermint. It is extremely beneficial for post-menopausal women and can balance sex hormones.
Take organic stevia cuttings and put them in a glass jar full of water. Stevia doesn’t like the cold, so make sure to put it in a consistently warm spot. It will help you stop smoking.
Grow tarragon by taking spring cuttings after fresh growth appears. You should place it on a warm and bright spot. Tarragon is packed with antibacterial properties and it can regulate blood sugar levels and treat metabolic syndrome.
You should take cuttings in the mid-spring or early summer before the parent plants flowers. Keep it moist to prevent drying out. This herb is beneficial as it can lower blood pressure, prevent tooth decay, and cause cancer cell death.
Happy Herb-ing! 🙂