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The 9 Easiest Herbs to Grow Indoors

by More.com Editors

The 9 Easiest Herbs to Grow Indoors
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Millennials are obsessed with plants, from cactuses to fiddle-leaf figs. We love them all and just can’t get enough, transforming our tiny apartments into urban jungles. According to the 2018 National Gardening Survey, your ‘typical’ gardener keeps getting younger, with 18 to 34-year-olds buying tons of houseplants. City dwellers are getting in on the action, with indoor gardening making a huge comeback.

 

As proud millennials, we’re unleashing our green thumbs to bring you a list of the nine best herbs to grow indoors. These fresh herbs are perfect for garnishing warm, savory dishes anytime of year. In addition to tasting great, these herbs will also look so pretty growing in your space. Part of millennials’ fascination with plants is driven by social media. After all, those plant babies look so pleasing on the ‘gram.

 

Kits With Easy Herbs To Grow

 

Best for Cooking: Windowsill Herb Grow Kit, $28
Best Hanging: Organic Hanging Parsley Growing Kit, $19.99
Best Self-Watering: Modern Sprout Basil Indoor Herb Garden Kit, $20
Best for Apartments: Glass Jar Herb Grow Kit, $24.95
Best for Beginners: Indoor Herb Garden Starter Kit, $22.95
Best Splurge: Dryden Trading Company Indoor/Outdoor Herb Garden Kit, $54.95
Best Organic: Nature’s Blossom Kitchen Herb Garden Indoor Seed Starter Kit, $29.99
Best Decorative: Modern Sprout Garden Jar Herb Kit, $22-100
Best Gift: Indoor Herb Garden Starter Kit – Certified 100% USDA Organic Non GMO, $26.96

 

 

 

Without further adieu, check out the best herbs to grow indoors, in order from easiest to most difficult.

 

 

The Best Herbs To Grow Indoors

 

1. Lemongrass
Technically, you don’t even grow lemongrass, in that it’s not planted in soil, making this one incredibly easy herb to keep in the house. When buying a stalk at your local market, look for plenty of stem and make sure the base is intact. Trim the top and place the stalk in a couple inches of water. The stalk will produce roots and dozens of new shoots.

 

To Buy:?Lemongrass Seeds, $1.99; etsy.com

 

2. Chives
These are one of the easiest herbs to grow indoors, as they do not require much light and are prolific in their production. Chives are easiest to start from an already-established plant. Just pull up a bunch from the established plant (including the roots), place it in a small pot half-full of potting soil, then cover the roots up to the crowns with more potting soil. Cut about one-third of growth off the top to stimulate new growth.

 

To Buy:?Chive Herb Seeds, $3.98; etsy.com

 

3. Mint
Both spearmint and peppermint literally grow like weeds. They’re both very hearty and very invasive, meaning that they can quickly choke out other herbs. Keep in mind that a lot of spearmint is required to produce the same minty effect as peppermint, so if you’re growing it indoors, where space is limited and harvesting is frequent, peppermint is the better option. Start your peppermint plant with seeds – not root or leaf cuttings – in a small pot full of potting soil. Peppermint will thrive in shade, but make sure it’s in a spot where it gets at least a little bit of light each day.

 

To Buy: Smart Garden Seeds in Coriander, $9; westelm.com

 

4. Parsley
Parsley is one of the most commonly used herbs and is very easy to grow, though the seeds can be difficult to germinate and may take up to two weeks to see results. The good news is it doesn’t require much light or maintenance once you get it started. Keep in mind, though, that this plant is a fairly slow grower, so initial clippings will not harvest a lot.

 

To Buy:?Parsley Herb Seeds, $3.98; etsy.com

 

5. Vietnamese Coriander
Coriander is the seed of the cilantro herb. This particular version of coriander is easier to grow than regular coriander, as it’s very hearty and very reliable.

 

To Buy:?Vietnamese Coriander Herb, $12.99; etsy.com

 

6. Oregano
The Greek variety of oregano is easiest to grow; however all oregano requires six to eight hours of sunlight per day, so a well-lit window – particularly one with southwestern sun exposure – is best.

 

To Buy:?Herb Oregano (250 Seed Packet), $4.98; homedepot.com

 

7. Thyme
This is another herb that requires six to eight hours of sunlight per day, and it may even need supplemental light. My favorite is lemon thyme, which can be used in place of regular thyme and has a unique citrus-like flavor and isn’t nearly as easy to find as other varieties in stores.

 

To Buy: English Thyme Seeds, $1.99; etsy.com

 

8. Rosemary
This herb is very easily over-watered. It prefers to remain on the dry side and does not need particularly rich soil. Several varieties are available; some are bush-like and some are more of a creeping plant. Choose an upright variety like Tuscan Blue or Blue Spire. These will remain more compact, making them a better choice for indoor growing.

 

To Buy:?Smart Garden Seeds in Rosemary, $9; westelm.com

 

9. Basil
This is one of my favorites to use when cooking. However, this herb is one of the most difficult to grow, especially indoors during the winter months. The best varieties for indoor growth are the Spicy Globe or African Blue. The African blue won’t have the wide, bright-green leaves you may be used to seeing in grocery stores; it’s similar to Thai basil with its narrower leaves and bluish-purple stalks.

 

To Buy: Smart Garden Seeds in Mint, $9; westelm.com

 

 

A Few Helpful Growing Tips

 

When buying herbs for indoor growth, it’s best to purchase plants that haven’t already been growing outside. The shock of bringing them indoors can cause trauma and affect growth and production. Remember that winter is a natural resting phase for plants, so it’s unrealistic to expect abundant growth during that time of year. Try minimal watering and let them do their thing. Clipping them regularly will promote further growth so clip away – remember, you’re growing them to use!

 

A common mistake is to plant all herbs in one container. This inhibits growth and in the case of an invasive herb, you’ll likely witness an herbal blitzkrieg in your container, so plant each herb in its own container. Containers should have ample drainage holes in the bottom and since herbs can be susceptible to fungus, allow them to breathe by using terracotta pots, no smaller than six inches in diameter. To allow further ventilation, place pots in a container of small pebbles.

 

Always use a high-quality organic potting soil that contains vermiculite or perlite for adequate drainage. Avoid using soil from the outside, as it contains organisms that are controlled by the outdoor environment. Rosemary, thyme, and basil prefer soil with more lime, so adding a spoonful of crushed eggshells to the soil is beneficial. Though herbs are hearty, they do like to be fed once in a while – especially when growing in limited pot space. Herbs are grown for their leaves not for their flowers, so any fertilizer you give them should promote leaf growth, not blooms. One of the easiest ways to feed your herbs is to add one tablespoon of fish emulsion to a gallon of water and use this every time you water.

 

Water the herbs at the base, where the stem meets the soil – don’t water the leaves. Water once and let the water drain completely through, then repeat. How often your herbs need to be watered is a matter of watching and learning to read each individual plant. A good rule of thumb is to let the soil dry between waterings. Remember, one of the biggest mistakes in watering herbs is over-watering them; herbs don’t require as much water as a typical houseplant. If you see leaves turning yellow, this is the first sign of over-watering.

 

If your herbs require supplemental light, clamp-on reflector lights with fluorescent bulbs work best. Clamp the lights to the pot, four to six inches away from the plant. If you see brown spots on the plant, this is a sign of burning and the lights either could be too close or may have been used for too long.

 

Even during winter, there’s no need to go without fresh ingredients for warm stews, soups, and herbed crusts and breads. Start growing herbs for any upcoming cooking you may have in store. With minimal space and perhaps some artificial light, a garden could provide plenty of fresh foodie fare.

 

Below, discover the best herb growing kits so you can become a proud plant parent.

 

1 of 9 Image Credits: Terrain

Best For Cooking

Windowsill Herb Grow Kit

Price:$28.00

Start your herb garden with this comprehensive kit including a timber planter box, three seed packets, three bamboo spikes, three coco coir pits, three expanding soil discs, and a step-by-step guide explaining the whole herb growing process. Use this set to grow basil, cilantro, and parsley for garnishing your dishes.

2 of 9 Image Credits: Wayfair

Best Hanging

Organic Hanging Parsley Growing Kit

Price:$19.99

This vertical growing kit includes organic parsley seeds, potting soil, a shovel, a planting guide, and an eco-friendly hanging bag. All you have to do is add water. Drape the hanging bag over a door or railing to enjoy delicious herbs at home.

3 of 9 Image Credits: Verishop

Best Self-Watering

Modern Sprout Basil Indoor Herb Garden Kit

Price:$20.00

Do you forget to water your herbs? Save yourself the struggle with this Mason Jar Indoor Herb Garden kit, which has an amazing self-watering system so you can grow fresh basil with minimal effort. The set comes with organic basil seeds, plant food, and a stylish mason jar pot to top it all off.

4 of 9 Image Credits: Terrain

Best For Apartments

Glass Jar Herb Grow Kit

Price:$24.95

Have limited space to work with? Grow your herbs in a jar to place on your windowsill, desk, or any other available area of your apartment. This kit comes with non-GMO mint seeds, plant food, a stainless steel net pot, and a glass canning jar.

5 of 9 Image Credits: Amazon

Best for Beginners

Indoor Herb Garden Starter Kit

New to plant parenting? Try out a bunch of different herbs to find your favorites. This kit contains eight popular seeds: basil, parsley, cilantro, dill, chives, mint, oregano, and thyme. There are also bamboo plant markers, soil pellets, and detailed instructions for if you have no idea what you're doing.

6 of 9 Image Credits: Amazon

Best Splurge

Dryden Trading Company Indoor/Outdoor Herb Garden Kit

This kit contains seeds for five popular herbs: oregano, parsley, cilantro, bouquet dill, and sweet basil. Each herb kit is handmade in Wenatchee, Washington, using pine and fir wood. The herb kit comes with fertile "Wonder" soil, planting instructions, and plant markers, so all you have to do is add water.

7 of 9 Image Credits: Amazon

Best Organic

Nature's Blossom Kitchen Herb Garden Indoor Seed Starter Kit

Dive into the world of home gardening by snagging this kit, which contains everything you need to grow organic sweet basil, organic cilantro, organic thyme, and organic parsley. The seeds are non-GMO, high-quality, and sourced from the United States. The set also includes four biodegradable planting pots, plant labels, a gardening guide, and a plant water mister.

8 of 9 Image Credits: Food52

Best Decorative

Modern Sprout Garden Jar Herb Kit

Price:$100.00

Millennials love mason jars almost as much as they love plants! With this gift set, you get both. Score five colorful mason jars and packages of organic oregano, organic cilantro, mint, pansy, organic parsley, and organic basil. These plant babies would look so cute lined along your bookshelf. You can grab all five herbs for $100, or you can buy one herb for $22 to get started.

9 of 9 Image Credits: Amazon

Best Gift

Indoor Herb Garden Starter Kit - Certified 100% USDA Organic Non GMO

Delight the plant lover in your life with this herb starter kit. The set has 5 organic seeds: Italian large leaf basil, coriander cilantro, peione parsley, broad leaf sage, and thyme. There are five compostable pots for growing the seeds in, plus plant markers, a growing guide, and soil discs. The seeds grow well on windowsills, balconies, countertops, and more making this kit a versatile option that's sure to please.