Plant Kitchen Herbs in a Windowsill Garden
The first day of spring is always a treat, and here in Upstate New York this year was especially pleasant. Soaring temps leave me itching to get my hands wrist deep in the soil. However, it’s more likely than not that we’ve got a few more chilly nights ahead of us. So, what’s a green thumb to do?
Planting a kitchen herb garden now will help sate the urge to dig in the dirt and will give you lots of fresh herbs to add to your favorite dishes long before Memorial Day barbeques. I like to plant the staples; basil, thyme, parsley and cilantro. Starting these seeds indoors is easy and they produce flavorful herbs that bring so much color to your dishes and your windowsill. And the best part? With a little care and maintenance, you’ll see these plants propagate in no time and will be picking fresh herbs all from your little herb garden all summer!
Start with a 6” plastic pot, like the Euro Pots from Greenhouse Megastore. Fill the plastic pots with organic potting soil and a little compost. The compost helps feed the plants throughout their cycle while growing in a container. Make seven or eight divots, about 1/4 to 1/2 inch deep and about 2 inches apart, in the soil with your index finger. Into each divot, drop several seeds: for larger herbs like basil, two or three seeds per space works great, for smaller ones like thyme, upwards of ten to twelve seeds per space will bring a better yield. Cover the seeds with the soil, water in and place in a warm, sunny windowsill. Within one or two weeks, the seeds should be germinated. Once germinated, water as needed and your seed starting is complete.
Harvest the herbs as often as you like to spice up your favorite dishes. When harvesting, take care to leave the main stem intact so that you have fresh herbs all season long. Feed as needed with compost tea or other organic plant food.