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Top 6 Culinary Herbs You Never Knew You Could Grow Indoors, During Winter!

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An easy way to eat better and save a good amount of money on your grocery bill would be to start growing your own herbs indoors.  Regardless of what zone you live in, you can add an attractive indoor herb garden to your kitchen.  All you need is a window with good light, a few pots, and seeds.

#1 CHIVES


Use chives in fresh salads, sauces or with other vegetables.

If you have chive plants already growing in your garden, you can bring them indoors and continue to harvest from them well into the winter months.  Just cut down to 2 inches above the soil line and re-pot into a small container suitable for indoors.  You can also start chive seeds indoors.  Place your chives near a south or east facing window. They'll do best in a bright spot, but they don't necessarily need direct sunlight. Rotate them occasionally if they start leaning towards the light source too much.
 

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#2 MINT


Mint lovers will find a wide variety of uses such as soups, salads and herbal teas.

Growing mint indoors is easy! Water your mint seeds well and place it in a location with indirect light, like a west or south facing window. Also try to keep the temperature of the room somewhere between 65-70 degrees F., no lower than 55 degrees F. at night.   Mint plants need to be regularly watered, but not overly wet.  When the soil on top is dry to the touch, then watering is needed.  Just remember to keep it evenly moist.  Rotate plants every 3-4 days to make sure the plants don't start to bend as they "reach" for any light coming through a window.  

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#3 ROSEMARY



Rosemary is an herb that pairs wonderfully with meat, especially chicken and lamb. 

Grow your rosemary indoors by placing it in a south or west facing window.  Your rosemary seeds will need to receive at least 6 hours of sunlight per day.  If you aren't able to provide it with 6 hours of natural light, you can grow it under a florescent lamp or grow light.   Ensure that your roots will stay healthy by making sure to grow it in a good pot with drainage holes.  As with any of the herbs in this article, you can transplant it out into your garden in the spring, if you choose to do so.

 

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#4 OREGANO

When cooking Italian cuisine, don't forget the oregano. A great addition for many sauces.

Your oregano seeds will need at least 6 hours of good light.  Be careful not to put it in direct sunlight however because it can burn the plant.  If the edges of your leaves turn brown, that's a sign that it's getting too much light.   Water your oregano plant once a week, and don't let the soil dry out.  When harvesting the leaves be careful to not to use more than half of the leaves.  Also, to avoid tugging on the leaves and causing stress to your plant, simply snip them off with a pair of scissors. 

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#5 THYME

If you cook fish often, consider growing thyme. It is also delightful on chicken. 

Thyme loves the sun, so if you choose to grow it indoors make sure you put it in the location with the most light.  The sun also will bring out the oils and fragrance of the plant.  If you're short on sunny spots, try placing a regular florescent tube light over the plant and leave it on for 15 hours each day.  Water and harvest regularly to keep it in a nice bush-shape.

Remember when choosing your containers, they'll need to fit on a windowsill. Usually, 4-inch pots work best.
Check your pots to make sure they have drainage holes, otherwise your herbs will rot.  They'll need to rest in saucers that should be slightly wider than the pots.  If you're using terracotta pots, just remember that they can dry out rather quickly, so you might want to use a rubber or plastic liner inside of the pot.  

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#6 BASIL

Growing basil can easily be done year-round, indoors. Because it thrives in temperatures slightly above 70° F, an indoor location is ideal.


Basil is planted in the spring and dies at the first fall frost. It can be grown year-round indoors or in frost-free climate. Basil also needs daytime temperatures over 70° F and nighttime temps over 50° F. Basil thrives in warmer temperatures.  Sow your seeds outdoors in spring, after all danger of frost has passed. Basil needs at least 6-8 hours of full sun each day, so keep that in mind when choosing a location to start your seeds. Try to space your basil plants about 12 inches apart.

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