Growing Herbs in Containers

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It is so much easier to concentrate growing herbs in containers as they are easier to move around and also when space is of a premium this is the way to grow herbs.

Many herbs can be grown successfully in containers on a patio, balcony or terrace. There are many reasons why you may want to grow herbs in containers rather than in the garden. First, many of them are small and tend to get lost in a landscape; growing them in containers makes them more accessible. This is especially true of ornamental herbs that have unique qualities that should be viewed up close.

Container growing is especially recommended for herbs that need good drainage and tend to rot in overly wet garden soils, or for tender herbs. Containers are easily transported and can be arranged in attractive groupings with containers of flowering plants.

Choosing a container

Any container is suitable for growing herbs as long as it has a drainage hole. Clay pots are often preferred because they are more porous than plastic. Other containers that work well include window boxes and hanging baskets.

Soil mix

The soil you use should be loose and well drained. Choose a well composted potting soil.

Choosing the plants. Small and slow-growing herbs look best in containers. Some examples are sage, parsley, oregano, rosemary, rosemary, marjoram, basil, thyme, chives, and summer savoury. Window boxes and large pots can accommodate a combination of several herbs and flowers.

 Care of herbs in containers

Watering is the most difficult part of container gardening. Plants growing in containers dry out faster than in the ground. On a hot sunny day, a container may require water once or twice daily. Of course, the water requirements vary from plant to plant. When the top of the soil feels dry, apply enough water to allow a small amount to come out the drainage holes in the bottom of the container.

Since most herbs do not require high fertility, you should not need to fertilise them as much as you would other container-grown plants such as flowers or houseplants. During the growing season, pinch the plants back to keep them bushy and compact and remove any dead or diseased leaves to keep them healthy.

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