Welcome to Day 12 of the zero waste challenge.
Would you like to grow some of your favorite herbs at home?
Yes, even when you live in an apartment, you can grow some herbs with little space.
I have recently come across a grow kit in an electronics superstore, and I was amazed to see plants there. Well, seeds in plastic pods that looked like Steve Jobs had designed.
It triggered the anti-plastic part of me, but at the same time, it is a way to get real plants back into your home and grow herbs from an indoor garden. I am emphasizing ‘real’ because I have seen a lot of places where they use plastic plants. (shaking my head in silence).
Today we look at how you can make an indoor garden for yourself.
Rather than buying herbs at the market, see if you can start growing some of your own. If you buy them in supermarkets, they often come diseased and only last for a couple of months.
Growing your own herbs is actually a lot easier than you may have initially thought.
If you live in an apartment without a garden, try this method:
- Most likely, you have a window somewhere in your apartment. The best scenario will be a south-facing window if you live in the northern hemisphere and north-facing if you live in the southern hemisphere.
- Go ahead and use some of your old mason jars and put a couple of small pebbles in the bottom, then fill up the rest with soil.
- Of course, you can use planter pots from ceramic. The ones with a hole in the bottom and place them on a tray.
- For your soil, you want to use compost and topsoil mix 50/50. This will give your plants enough food to go through a while winter, and there is no need to fertilize them.
What if you don’t have a south or north-facing window?
Well, you can go a bit fancier and create an artificial light source. These can vary in price from $ – $$$. Depending on the size of your indoor garden etc.
Like I mentioned earlier, the Steve Jobs version of indoor gardening is probably aimed at people with no green thumbs. If that’s you, check it out here. Perhaps just buying an artificial light source works best.
Make sure you don’t overwater your plants, and that’s it.
Plants that grow really well indoors are.
- Rosemary – The root of the semi-woody cuttings of rosemary need more time, but the new shoots in the spring grow faster. Keep the plant in a sunny spot.
- Sage – You should take some sage cuttings in the spring and place them in water. Place the herb on a bright spot in a well-aerated place as it is prone to mildew.
- Peppermint – This herb is high in the volatile substance menthol, which provides a cooling sensation on the skin or tongue and does not change the temperature. Just put a few fresh cuttings in water, as it is the most natural herbs you can grow in water.
- Tarragon – You need some spring cuttings after new growth appears, and place the herb on a warm and bright place. Tarragon can be of various types, and the French one is best for culinary purposes while the Russian is better to be used for salads.
- Basil – This herb is quickly grown in water. Place the cuttings in water before they start flowering and place the container in a sunny place.
- Spearmint –Peppermint is a natural hybrid of spearmint, and it is quickly grown in this way.
- Thyme – Take some newly grown, green cuttings, in the mid-spring or early summer before the thyme starts flowering, place them in water, and spray the parts which are under the water to avoid its drying. As soon as it is grown, cut the stems to boost branching.
- Oregano – Place the fresh cuttings of oregano in water and pinch the growing tips as the herb grows.
- Lemon balm – You should pick several cuttings in spring or fall, and place them in water in a bright spot. After 3-4 weeks, the cuttings will develop roots. Change the water often, or you can keep the plant outdoor if the weather is warm. You can prepare tea from the leaves.
- Stevia – You can add stevia to some beverages and teas. Just place some stevia cuttings from actively growing branches in a container full of water, and keep it in a sunny and warm place.
As you can see there are plenty of varieties to choose from and get you going in your indoor garden.
Did you know that we have lost 70% of our soils to chemical-heavy farming, deforestation which increases erosion and global warming?
We need healthy soils to grow food. But the American scientist says if we keep going at the current rate, we will only have 60 years of farming left until the soils are completely dead.
Additionally, it takes 1000 years to make 3 centimeters of topsoil.
This is my challenge for you today. Make yourself a little indoor herb garden and enjoy the beauty of growing your own food.