How to choose herbs to grow in your garden

Home-grown herbs are a wonderful addition to your garden. It’s much more enjoyable to eat herbs you’ve grown yourself. How can you make sure herbs succeed in your garden?

Pick your herb types

First, create a list of the types of herbs you want to grow in your garden. Don’t worry too much about the climate and soil conditions just yet, just come up with a list of herbs you’d like to have.

Herbs typically fall into three different categories: culinary, medicinal and ornamental herbs. Think whether you are looking for herbs to use in cooking or are you after something to use in your teas and potions?

If you want to enjoy your herb garden for the whole year, make sure you mix perennial and annual herbs in your garden display!


Check your garden conditions

Look at your garden for the best possible spots for your herbs. Almost all herbs require plenty of sunlight, so you want to make sure you place your herbs in a sunny location. Some herbs, such as parsley, mint, chives and chervil can survive and thrive in more shady conditions.

You should also find herbs that are suitable for your soil, although you can also change the conditions so they are more favourable for a variety of herbs. For instance, you can add some coarse grit and compost to a heavy clay soil and use lime in the planting area if your soil is very acidic.

You can even grow your herbs in containers, as long as you make sure there’s sufficient drainage.


Herbs for indoor or outdoor garden

If you feel like your garden plot might not be the most suitable place for herbs, you can grow them indoors as well. Herbs that grow well indoors are chives, coriander, parsley, dill, mint and basil.

If you are already growing flowers or vegetables in your garden, you don’t necessarily need a specific spot for herbs. You can plant herbs in between the flowers and the vegetables. This can add plenty of magnificent scents and colour to your garden and some herbs are suitable for keeping pests away!

Lavender and sage are great herbs for adding a bit of colour, and thyme and basil have a very distinctive green colour, adding lovely colour combinations to your flowerbeds.

You can also line your flowerbeds or even patios with chives and thyme, as these can withstand light foot traffic. If you are looking for something to grow amongst vegetables, go with parsley, coriander, and dill.

Chives are especially good for repelling aphids, carrot flies and cabbageworms.


Choose between seeds and plants

You should also think whether you’d like to grow your herbs from scratch and pick seeds, or opt for using herbs that have already grown. Growing from seeds is often cheaper and you can buy some great herb growing kits from retailers. These packets often contain instructions for when and how to start growing the seeds.

You can also try to grow herbs from existing plants. Supermarket herb pots can be re-potted to your garden and they will continue to grow.