Growing Herbs from Seeds

Develop a Herb Garden Plan

If you regularly use herbs in your cooking and would like to have your own abundant supply of fresh herbs, why not try growing herbs from seeds?

In this article I have outlined five simple steps that will explain how to do it.

You should start by putting together a herb gardening plan in November and December ready to start in the spring of the following year. You’ll find lots of information to help you prepare a plan on other parts of this website, as well as recommendations on what herbs to grow and where to buy them.

Your herb gardening plan will also help you to choose the best times to sow your herb seeds. This is important when you are growing herbs from seeds because it will ensure that you have a plentiful supply of herbs throughout the year and a good final crop in the autumn to store for use over the winter.

Growing herbs from seeds needn’t take up a lot of time or require a lot of effort if you follow the instructions I have provided below.

Growing Herbs from Seeds – Choosing your Herbs

You probably already have some favorite herbs you’d like to grow. When I started herb growing herbs from seeds, I grew basil because I wanted lots of fresh basil to use in my cooking. Other herb gardening beginners I know started herb growing herbs like parsley, chives and sage, because, like me, they were already familiar with these herbs and used them regularly for their favorite recipes.

But don’t just stick with the herbs you know.  Do a little research and find some other useful herbs that are less familiar to you.  If you need to get some ideas, send of for some illustrated seed catalogs or carry out some searches for herb seeds using the the internet.

Also garden centers generally have special display areas for herbs.  You can touch and smell them and get ideas on herbs you’d like to grow.

As well as basil, I now grow parsley, chives, sage, oregano and borage.   All of these herbs are frequently used in the preparation of meals, salads and drinks.  They are all good choices for you when you set about growing herbs from seeds.

If you really growing herbs from seedshaven’t the time to carry out all the research but want a selection of herb seeds that will get you started, I recommend buying a package of different sorts of herb seeds from Amazon.

The selection of twelve herb seeds illustrated provides excellent value for money at around $12. If you chose to purchase the individual packets of herb seeds, it  could easily cost you twice as much.

Go to “herb seeds for sale” on Amazon to look at this and other special deals for growing herbs from seeds.

What You Need to Get Hold of for Growing Herbs from Seeds

It won’t cost you a lot of money to create a herb garden if you are growing herbs from seeds, but there are a number of things you’ll need to get hold of.  Some of them you’ll need to buy, but others could be borrowed from neighbors.  The things you need are:

1. One small bag of soil-less growing medium to sow your seeds in. Avoid using garden soil – its texture and nutrient content might not be good for growing seeds

2. Several of the type of seed trays that are divided into separate compartments or cells, and have transparent plastic covers.  You can get the “seed starting kit” illustrated from Amazon for around $25.  The covers protect the seeds and help keep the soil moist during germination. You’ll need two or three of these to grow a selection of  twelve herbs.  Just buy one if you only want to start with a small number of herbs.

3. Kitchen or fine garden sieve. You’ll need this to prepare some really fine soil-less medium to go over your seeds once you have sown them

4. Water spray (like the ones used for spraying insecticide on roses) or a small watering can with a watering attachment that has very fine holes

5. Sufficient 3 inch plastic flower pots to plant your small seedlings in once they have grown.

Five Steps to Follow When Growing Herbs from Seeds

Follow these five simple steps and you can be sure of producing a healthy and flourishing crop of herbs when growing herbs from seeds.

STEP 1

  • Fill your seed trays with the soil-less compost
  • Use the water spray or watering can to wet the seed trays (don’t make the soil-less compost too wet)
  • Place two or three seeds in each cell of the seed tray

STEP 2

  • Cover your seed trays with finely sieved soil-less compost (Don’t bury seeds too deep)
  • Spray or water the trays lightly with water again, and then cover them with their plastic covers
  • Label each tray so that you know what herbs they contain

STEP 3

  • Cover the trays with black polythene or newspaper and put them on your window-shelf or in a green house
  • Check regularly and keep the soil-less compost moist
  • Watch carefully for the seeds to germinate.

STEP 4

  • When seeds have germinated take the black polythene/ newspaper covering off the seed trays
  • Put the trays in a light place (but not direct sunlight)

STEP 5

  • Replant your seedlings in the 3 inch plastic pots when they have grown into firm young plants (1 to 2 inches tall) by:- Filling each 3 inch pot three quarters full with the soil-less compost

- Making a large hole in the soil at the center of each pot

- Transferring each plant (and the “root-ball” of soil) to it’s own pot

- Firming the soil around the plant afterwards

  • Keep the pots in a light ventilated area and water regularly
  • Replant your herb plants in your herb garden or patio herb container when they have grown into strong young plants 2-3 inches tall

Tips on Harvesting your Herbs

After you have followed the steps I have outlined for growing herbs from seeds you’ll be able to watch your herbs grow and start harvesting them in the early summer. When you do harvest them, don’t remove too many leaves at one time.  If you stick to this rule your herbs will quickly regrow, and you’ll be able to continue harvesting them again and again through the summer and into the autumn.

Throughout the summer period you’ll be able to enjoy using your own home-grown herbs. You will also have something to boast about at your next dinner party when you use the herbs you’ve grown in your favorite recipes and describe your success at growing herbs from seeds. 

Happy herb gardening,

Yes! I Want Your Herb Gardening

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