Have you ever wanted to create a novice, indoor garden but you are unsure of where to start?
This year, seniors have been exploring new activities that keep everyday life engaging while sheltering-in-place by bringing old and new hobbies indoors.
Gardening is just one of the few.
Why garden indoors? For seniors (especially those with compromised immune systems) during these recent times, it’s a safer way to avoid getting sick.
Other benefits include eliminating weather changes that could negatively impact outdoor plants, outlining your home with beautiful greenery that emits much needed oxygen, and having fresh greens at the ready for cooking purposes.
For this article, let’s explore 14 herb plants that are relatively simple to grow and to maintain indoors:
Chives grow in copious amounts just about anywhere. Start by digging up a few chives from the base of an outdoor plant. Place them in a pot outside for a few days until the leaves start to die off. Once the pot is indoors, leave it in a cooler sport for a few days before placing it in a window with lots of sunlight.
Lemongrass is commonly used to flavor Thai foods and can be purchased as a seed, an herb, or a starter plant in local grocery stores throughout the United States. Lemongrass tends to grow better in more humid environments and requires a fair amount of sunlight.
Parsley grows slowly from seed or from an outdoor plant that’s already well-established. Seeds should be soaked in warm water for a while prior to potting. Place pots in an east or west-facing window of the home.
Outdoor mint tends to run rampant, so growing mint indoors better contains the plant and keeps it from over-powering other plants. Provide indoor pots with plenty of sun and keep the soil moist.
There are several types of basil plants, but it’s best to use smaller ones for indoor gardening. This popular herb is used to flavor many Italian dishes. Basil can be grown indoors from seeds and does well in south-facing windows with warmer temperatures.
Cilantro grows well all year round indoors starting from seedlings in potted soil. Since cilantro doesn’t last very long, it’s better to spread out growth of a few seedlings every few weeks. This will create a steady, small supply rather than growing it all at once and wasting full-grown plants before even having time to use the cilantro for meals.
Thyme grows extremely well indoors and can be started by using a grown tip cut from an outdoor plant. Place the potted plant in an east or west-facing window of the home for full sun exposure.
8. Bay Leaf:
Bay leaf, also referred to as bay laurel, grows well indoors during the long winter months but needs to be placed outside during the warm summer time. Indoor pots should be placed in east or west-facing windows for full sun exposure. Keep bay leaf plants well-pruned so the plant doesn’t overcrowd itself.
Collect a few grown tips from an outdoor plant during the summer and place in a cup of water for a few days to provide moisture to the fresh root systems. After planting the tip in a soil-filled pot, place the pot in a south-facing window where it can get a lot of sun. Oregano is popularly used in Italian foods and is more flavorful if it’s fresh.
Either snip a growing tip off of a well-grown outdoor sage plant or go to the store to buy a starter plant. Tips can be placed in a pot indoors, and if kept moist will start to take root in healthy potting soil. Place sage in a south-facing window in tons of sunlight. Sage does well in dry environments and can be used in a wide variety of foods.
Indoor rosemary can be started by using a 4-inch clipping from an outdoor plant. Place it in some soil and cover the top with plastic for a few weeks because the root system grows better with humidity. Rosemary is that perfect plant to grow indoors during the early winter and can be easily transplanted outdoors.
12. Kaffir Limes:
The limes (as well as the leaves) are commonly used in authentic Asian foods. Kaffir limes can be grown indoors, but thrive of some hours spent outside during the summer.
Also called French parsley chervil grows well from seed and needs cooler housing temperatures between 65 and 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Place potted plants in areas of the home with lower sunlight exposure.
Similarly to chives, a harvested tarragon plant from outdoors should be placed in a pot outside until the leaves die back. Bring the pot inside and place in a cool spot for a few days before placing it in a south-facing, sunny window.
13 Easy Herbs to Grow Indoors (2020). HGTV. https://www.hgtv.com/outdoors/gardens/garden-styles-and-types/13-easy-herbs-to-grow-indoors-pictures. Viewed on Sept. 30, 2020.
10 Herbs you can grow indoors year-round. (2019). Good Housekeeping. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/gardening/a20705923/indoor-herb-garden/. Viewed on September 30, 2020.