How to grow herbs in pots
Herbs are easy to grow in pots. Heat-loving herb basil is delicious picked fresh and mixed into pasta sauces, it’s happiest indoors on a warm, sunny windowsill. Hardier Mediterranean herbs like rosemary, mint and oregano do well in pots on the patio outdoors.
Choose a heavy bottomed pot and fill with a multi purpose compost with added grit for drainage. Alternatively, sow herb seeds in spring in a heated propagator or on a sunny windowsill into a multi-purpose compost to germinate and pot on later in summer. Keep your pots damp but not waterlogged during the summer months.
Can I plant different herbs in the same pot?
Plant different herbs in the same pot for an attractive display. Group herbs by use, keeping oregano, thyme and rosemary together with more tropical herbs like basil in a warmer spot in the greenhouse. Potted tender herbs like basil are better moved indoors over the winter months. Mix heights and textures together for interest, pairing tall chives and low growing oregano to make your pot a focal point on the patio.
Use water retaining crystals to keep the potting compost moist during warm weather. Multiple plants in a single pot may exhaust the nutrients in the potted compost more quickly, so add a slow release fertiliser to the potting mix, and make sure you refresh the compost in the pot each year.
Can potted herbs survive the winter?
Potted herbs can survive the winter. Tender herbs like basil are best moved into a warm spot like a windowsill indoors or a greenhouse during the winter months to keep them away from the worst of the winter cold, alternatively treat your basil like an annual and buy new plants or sow basil seeds in spring.
Tender perennials like mint die back in winter. Simply stop watering and keep your tender perennials in a sheltered spot until spring when they’ll show new, fresh green growth. Woody perennials like rosemary keep their foliage over winter however they don’t like being waterlogged so raise your pots onto pot feet or bricks to improve drainage or put them under a simple shelter. Give the pots a light compost refresh in spring.